News for the Hospitality Executive
Online Lodging Website Study Ranks Marriott #1 Followed
by Expedia and
Hotels.com for Online Customer Experience and Service Levels
|Keynote Reveals Results of Three Studies of Online Travel
Sites: Airline, Lodging, Rental Car
* Customer Support is the Primary Driver of Web User
SAN MATEO, Calif. - June 10, 2008 - Keynote Competitive Research, the industry analysis group of Keynote Systems (Nasdaq:KEYN), today announced the topline results of a series of competitive research studies examining the online travel industry, including studies of airline, lodging and rental car Web sites. Collectively, the studies provide an in-depth examination of the online customer experience and service levels (responsiveness and reliability) of leading travel sites.
Customer Experience Rankings® for Online Travel Web Sites
There was no single leader that spanned the different travel markets this year. Each travel type had their own unique group of top performers as denoted by the 250+ customer experience metrics measured in each study.
In the Airline Travel study, among the 11 online travel and airline Web sites examined, Expedia ranked #1 in customer experience followed by Southwest Airlines and Travelocity.
In the Online Lodging study, Marriott ranked #1 followed by Expedia and Hotels.com. In past studies, Marriott has been the highest ranked site operated by a lodging supplier, however the latest study marks the first time a direct supplier has out-performed any travel service aggregator.
Travelocity took the #1 ranking in the Rental Car Reservation study, with Budget following close behind as the highest ranked direct rental car supplier.
Keynote Customer Experience Rankings for Travel Web Sites“Keynote continues to see travel service aggregators compete with price & selection against suppliers who have increasingly effective customer support and booking features,” states Stephen Foster, director, competitive research at Keynote. “The lodging market is especially notable for the rise of Marriott and Hotels.com as leaders in customer experience.”
Each of the Keynote Customer Experience Rankings studies examine the online experience of more than 1,800 to 2,000 consumers as they interacted with leading Web sites in the airline, lodging and rental car industries. The studies detail how each site performs versus competitors across key business objectives, including customer satisfaction and customer acquisition, and captures more than 250+ metrics for each site. The study provides competitive rankings in dozens of categories, as well as specific and actionable steps sites can take to improve their online performance, customer satisfaction, brand appeal and customer acquisition.
As a part of the customer experience findings, Keynote’s Competitive Research group conducts an analysis of the drivers behind the users’ decisions. This driver analysis utilizes qualitative, quantitative and behavioral data to identify which aspects of the site experience have the most significant impact on site success. The top success driver for both Lodging and Rental Car sites was Customer Service, while Airline sites were resoundingly driven by Price Satisfaction.
Keynote Driver Analysis Rankings for Travel Web Sites
Service Level Rankings for Online Travel Web Sites
The Keynote Service Level Rankings studies examine the technical performance of leading online travel sites, including site responsiveness and reliability. The studies provide insight into the technical performance of the sites relative to their competitors, as well as detailed data on each site’s performance across seven key measures critical to operational health of an online travel site.
This study series has highlighted varying degrees of service performance problems. “High error and outage rates, major load handling issues and the poorest and most variable overall performance plague the travel segment more than any other vertical Keynote studies,” states Ben Rushlo, senior manager, competitive research at Keynote. In the Rental Car study, there was a very wide variation in search results between sites, with the fastest sites bringing back rental car results within 1.2 seconds and the slowest taking over 20 seconds to return results. Although Expedia and Travelocity routinely exhibit less downtime, and faster responses, they did take a back seat in responsiveness measurements to Jet Blue, Alamo and Marriott in the Airline, Rental Car and Lodging studies respectively.
Keynote Service Level Rankings for Travel Web Sites
The data and insights provided by Keynote Competitive Research are arrived at through the use of Keynote’s company’s commercially available test and measurement products: Transaction Perspective® for Web site performance measurements and WebEffective™ for customer experience testing. Transaction Perspective mimics the actions of consumers and measures performance from multiple geographic locations, collecting more than 6,500 data points for each site to detail online technical performance. Keynote WebEffective is an on-demand software platform for conducting in-depth user experience research which integrates the best aspects of usability, behavior and attitudinal research.
Keynote Systems, Inc.
|Also See:||Hotel Websites Have Much to Do to Increase User Satisfaction and Customer Loyalty; New Report Tracking User Satisfaction and Web Site Performance Now Available / April 2004|
|New Survey Reveals How Sales and Revenue Managers Handle Internet Marketing and Distribution; 10% of Hotels Still Do Not Have a Dedicated Web Site / February 2006|