Travel agents don’t have it easy these days. They have to constantly compete with big players like Expedia, Tripadvisor, and others on a constant basis. More travelers are going online to book their vacations, landing travel agents in a soup.
Today, we will give you some helpful travel agent tips to increase sales and close more deals. Here’s what you need to do-
Sell More Than Vacation Packages
Most travel agents make the mistake of selling vacations as a product. Nothing could be more harmful to your sales!
You should aim to sell vacations as an experience- an experience that your clients want. So instead of pushing readymade packages, find out on what your clients are ready to spend their hard-earned money.
People want to escape their daily routines when they travel. You have to align your products according to their desires. Tell them what a destination offers, the activities he can do, and how the vacation can help him take a break.
Use your imagination and paint vivid pictures of the vacation for your clients. They have to know why the vacation makes sense for them.
Ask Open-Ended Questions
When coming up with itineraries, focus on what the client wants. This is one of the most valuable travel agent tips for success. Asking open-ended questions can help you make out client needs and preferences effectively. You can ask questions like-
- What is your idea of a great vacation?
- What is the most memorable part of your last trip?
- What are you looking forward to on this trip?
The questions will enable you to discover what your clients really want. Then you can make changes to your package, making sure it meets client preferences.
Upsell Like a Pro
Another vital travel agent tips are Upselling or Cross-selling, which is a common way to increase your revenues. But just asking your clients, “do you want an upgrade” doesn’t cut the ice anymore. You have to make it clear what the upgrade comes with.
For instance, if someone has opted for a standard room, ask them, would they like a room with the sunset view? (instead of asking to upgrade to a deluxe room)
If someone has chosen only lodging, ask them would they like to include lunch and dinner featuring local cuisines?
People mostly reject upgrades as they only think about the cost. But if you can clearly show how the upsell/upgrade benefits the client, he might just be ready for it.
People are excited about traveling. The excitement shows when they are researching destinations, reserving hotels, or just checking out prices. You have to have the same level of passion when you deal with your clients.
Don’t hold your enthusiasm back, and always put on a smile. Make it obvious that you, too, love traveling and really want your clients to have the best time of their lives.
Your enthusiasm will surely translate into more bookings and closed deals.
Join Travel Groups
This technique works for all industries. You join groups on social media on your niche and try to establish yourself as an expert on the subject. That way, people are ready to trust you and even consider your product or services.
You will find ample of travel groups on Facebook and other social media platforms. You can also create accounts on sites like Tripadvisor. Then you should answer questions left by others, provide your honest opinions, and help the group members as much as you can.
Over time, people will directly approach you with queries, which opens up a great opportunity to promote your services. You will also get more business once people recognize you as a thought leader and travel expert.
Don’t Try to Match Prices
Clients sometimes ask if you can match the price on popular booking sites. You may agree and say yes in fear of losing the business, as most of us do.
But the truth is, you don’t have to match prices for every client.
If someone asks for a price match, ask them why they chose the hotel or cruise. If they say it was the cheapest, it’s better to let go of the client. He might not have the right budget or be the right match for your product.
Now, if the client gives specific reasons, note them down! This gives you the perfect opportunity to suggest things your clients consider, even at a higher price!
Go for Niche Markets
You can pick up certain trends in the travel market and go for specific niches. You certainly can’t offer everything and should stick to things you know.
Choosing a niche is not difficult. You just have to aim for something unique. The more unique is your niche, the more business will be headed your way.
You can, for example, focus on organizing trips for older British couples. Or, you may offer hiking in offbeat locations that no one else does. You can also cash in on growing trends like biking trips, destination weddings, or corporate travel- whatever fits your bill!
Spend in Online Advertising
The global online travel market will reach $1,091 billion by 2022, growing at a CAGR of 11.1%.
Unless you target the online audience, your business will not increase.
Consider spending some money on various forms of online advertisements like pay-per-click to attract new customers. You can also invest in social media advertising to build a customer base.
Online advertising can have results beyond expectations. Luxx Vacations spent $1,200 on Facebook ads that brought them 800 customers and $1 million in sales. You can also expect similar results by going online and advertising your business and packages. You will require a sales execution platform and marketing automation to achieve similar results.
Travel agents need to align themselves with the evolving travel market to meet customer needs. You can increase your sales and close more business after that following the tips we discussed. Also, consider investing in a reliable travel CRM like LeadSquared (15-day free trial) to optimize your sales process and close more deals.