The most successful online businesses (Booking.com, Amazon, Google etc) have demonstrated that reducing friction points from a user’s shopping journey, reduces churn and increases sales.
It seems rather obvious, right? Well, while some companies seem to be “obsessed” with minimizing the friction in their UX (user experience) to grow their sales, many other companies, even well know ones, seem to ignore rather obvious friction points in their websites.
The Case Study
The talented UX team from Growth.Design did a great job at depicting the journey of a user booking an accommodation on Airbnb. They came up with an ingenious “psych-level” meter that shows the user experience “satisfaction level” going up, or down, at each step of the “shopping journey”.
While the “shopping journey” for accommodation consists of several steps, location is one of the most important factors:
People travel for a number of reasons, but mostly to visit new places and take part in activities. Nobody travels to another country or city just to stay inside an apartment or hotel (unless forced into quarantine). Therefore, making it easier for travelers to choose wisely the location of their accommodation is very important.
Just A Map Is Not Enough
Does the majority of people traveling to a new city know where are the best areas to stay there? No.
Does every user that aborts the booking process to go find more information (pushed to do research on other sites), comes back to finish their booking process? No.
However, many online accommodation companies do not provide sufficient location insights to their users. By doing so, they are essentially pushing their users away, leaving them no other option but to make a “guesstimate”, or hop to other sites to find more info, often to their competitors.
Oh… and let’s not forget that Google Maps is nowadays a competitor too, as it also offers bookable accommodations, with enhanced location context.
Taking The Friction Away… Is Costly
The world largest companies can afford to dedicate entire teams with a product manager, geo-data specialists, data scientists, developers and designers to work on location insights for their service. At their level of transaction volumes, it can eventually pay off.
However, building an in-house solution is an unviable option for a modestly sized company. There’s the talent resources on one side, the learning curve and development time on the other side. It takes months of work to produce a usable MVP. Add up the hassle of choosing and licensing the location data API’s, curating the points of interest, generating scores and map layers, doing the translations… equaling more months of work. Finally, documenting everything and dedicating a team to supervise and maintain the services and data.
An Easier Solution
At AVUXI we have been advocating about the importance of location context for years. That’s why we created TopPlace™ – a very easy to integrate suite of location products that provides instant location context for accommodation seekers. It is an advanced and inexpensive SaaS solution.
TopPlace™ includes key location context elements tailored for travel, bundled into a ready product including maps, map layers of best areas, location scores, top rated POIs and more. It has worldwide coverage and readily localized versions, and it has been proven for years to perform very well with high volumes of traffic.