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The Importance of Mobile Testing within the Travel Sector

Posted by Rachel.Wilson on Tuesday 12 July 2016

Due to consumer demand and major advances in travel-tech, travellers are steering away from the traditional model of using travel agents, favouring websites and apps to organise their adventures. Consider these stats:

  • 85% of travellers are now using mobile devices to book travel activities.1
  • 55% of consumers using mobile to research want to purchase within the hour.2
  • Mobile will represent 31% of digital travel sales in 2016. That number will climb to 46% by 2019.3
  • Airbnb saw its mobile app’s monthly active users double from Q1 2014 to Q1 2016.4

Your customers expect to be able to make plans quickly and with ease. Today’s digital travel activity ranges from purchasing tickets, reserving accommodation, accessing timetables and booking information, checking in online, catching a taxi, making travel itineraries, checking the weather or a map, researching restaurants or destinations to social networking – the list is extensive. And what’s more, a lot of the activity is done en-route! So this means making sure your customers can access your applications wherever they are in the world, in whatever situation.

But there are a number of significant barriers to overcome before mobile can develop into a key channel for travel research and purchases:

  • Poor user design and thus poor user experience
  • Functional issues that stop users from completing purchases
  • Ensuring your apps work on all the devices your customers use
  • Making sure your site or app is localised for all the locations it will be used in
  • Network connectivity, lack of Wi-Fi and 4G coverage.

Just as companies like Airbnb, TripAdvisor and Expedia are actively working on, players in the travel industry need to highlight mobile as a core component of their business strategies, and work to make their websites and apps mobile-friendly, easy to use and functionally sound.

With the shift among travellers to mobile and the dramatic increase in the number of unique mobile devices being used by consumers, it is more vital than ever that Travel & Leisure companies have their software professionally tested. Without a site that functions correctly and is intuitive for your customers, your user and conversion rates are going to decline. However, maintaining a traditional in-house test team is not only extremely expensive, but also only feasible for travel giants who can afford to employ big teams of full-time professional testers. We are finding that as a result, software regularly goes to market having received little or no professional testing! Often, the frustration that this causes customers (as well as the corresponding lost sales) may not become evident, as those customers are more likely to head straight for one of your competitors than to highlight an issue.

Until relatively recently, there hadn’t been a solution to this problem. However, the innovation of the Crowdsourced Testing model means that companies like BugFinders can deliver a flexible, powerful testing service in a cost-contained, fast and effective way for Travel & Leisure organisations.

Here’s just a few ways BugFinders helps travel companies, such as Hilton, Neilson and GLH with their challenges:

Effortless usability for rushed customers

BugFinders usability experts and a global crowd measures your target customer’s behaviour and provides qualitative feedback that you can implement to improve your user design and user experience.

Smooth functionality around the globe

BugFinders have the ability to recreate real-word travel scenarios, enabling you to find issues that you might never find in-house. Utilising our crowd, we can deploy testers to any global location and setting to test your apps and websites.

Decrease bounce rates and increase conversion rates

Our crowd of professional testers will identify issues that harm your user and conversion rates by conducting rigorous and in-depth Functional and Usability Testing – specifically around purchasing scenarios and the checkout.

Broad device coverage

BugFinders’ crowd of over 55,000 testers can rapidly test a single piece of software on hundreds of unique devices, browsers and operating systems simultaneously. So you can be confident that your software will work correctly on a large majority of devices used by your customers.

Partnering with a Crowdsourced Testing partner enables companies to fix the most important issues well ahead of a new release or update going live, ensuring that barriers to research and purchase are removed and conversions maximised.

Travel is going mobile, and providing an exceptional user experience to customers, whatever Smartphone or tablet they happen to be using, is crucial to your business in an intensely competitive environment. Having your sites and apps professionally tested is an indispensable part of providing that experience and ensuring that your company continues to grow and thrive in the digital world.