|Orlando, Fla. (May 27, 2011) - Consumers
autonomous - both by choice and necessity. They have become more
insular with a
closely-knit sphere of influence and, as revealed in the
Group 2011 Portrait of the American Travelers(SM), this is affecting
both arrive at and make purchase decisions.
Within the funnel of information sources that drive
purchases, new insights from the survey reveal that initial ideas and
are obtained through personal relationships and trusted media.
Internet sources dominate as travelers move
closer toward purchasing decisions. Specifically, the key drivers for
phase of the travel decision-making process include:
- Step #1: Ideas
and inspiration: In this first stage, the role of family and friends is
essentially tied with traditional media as the trusted source of
The American traveler casts a wide net when seeking ideas and
travel-related decisions. Just over half look to family and friends (52
percent), alongside television (48 percent), and a variety of printed
including magazines (49 percent), professional guide books (46 percent)
brochures (43 percent).
- Step #2: Advice
and insight: The range of sources narrows in this next phase, as
closer to making an actual purchase decision. The personal
family and friends still top the list (54 percent), followed by travel
books (44 percent) and travel experts (38 percent). The Internet grows
influence, with search websites such as Google and Bing.com utilized by
one in four travelers (38 percent), as well as destination websites (37
percent). Interestingly, the impact of brochures and television drops,
revealing their role primarily as awareness-building, not
- Step #3: Pricing
and comparing: The Internet moves to the forefront, as travelers
variety of online resources. Online travel agencies such as Expedia or
Travelocity are utilized by more than half of travelers for gathering
information (56 percent) and impartial comparisons (51 percent). Travel
suppliers’ websites (such as airline or hotel pages) are also sources
pricing (51 percent), but less so for comparisons (35 percent). Roughly
one-third turn to online search engines (37 percent) or multi-brand
platforms like Amazon and Hotels.com (35 percent), and destination
percent) for pricing. However, only one out of four travelers uses
websites for comparison shopping.
The Ypartnership/Harrison Group 2011 Portrait of American
Travelers(SM) is national survey of 2,539 U.S. households that was
February 2011. The nationally-representative results provide an
examination of the impact of the current economic environment, social
and media habits on the travel habits of Americans with an annual
income of $50,000 or more. For more information, please visit the
section of http://www.ypartnership.com.
- Step #4:
Purchasing: When it comes to purchasing the best deal, the funnel
two main options – booking through an online travel agency (41 percent)
directly via a travel supplier’s own web site (38 percent). Less than
four travelers uses traditional travel agents (23 percent) when
followed distantly by multi-brand websites (18 percent) and destination
websites (17 percent).
Ypartnership is America's leading marketing
services company serving travel, leisure and entertainment clients. The
agency's Insights group is widely acknowledged as the preeminent source
market intelligence on emerging business and leisure travel trends. The
also co-authors the quarterly travelhorizons(TM) survey with the U.S.
Association. For more information, visit http://www.ypartnership.com.