Diversifying Checkout for Your Travel Business

 May 23rd, 2019

The travel industry is continuously growing and evolving. Businesses face immense competition and must adapt in the face of digitalization and technological disruption. To do so, optimizing their checkout processes and offering more ways to pay is an absolute must.

 

This is of course easier said than done.

 

In the paper The future of payments in the travel industry, written together with our partner Paysafe, we identified why providing multiple payment methods online is crucial and how it can be done effectively.

Accessibility of travel raises the bar


Travel has evolved from being something luxurious to something that almost everyone can experience. Comparison sites keep prices low and spoil customers with an abundance of offers. To keep up with rising customer expectations, businesses must continually innovate to gain an edge.

 

During the mobile-first era, it’s crucial to allow users to purchase services on-the-go with a smooth customer experience. Uber is a great example of a travel service application that provides in-app payment methods for customers to pay with their preferred method. Such app-based services have become nearly ubiquitous, pressuring other travel companies to offer similar experiences.

 

On the top of that, the emergence of innovative payment players has motivated many customers to sway away from paying with credit cards and start using alternative payment methods (APMs). Some will even completely ignore the services of a company if they are unable to purchase with their favorite method.

How many payment methods are enough?


Offering the right payment methods does not only cater towards the convenience of the customer. It increases conversion and presents alternatives to credit card payments, attracting new customers in the process. However, this does not mean that a business should just jam every single payment method they can find into their checkout process. Travel companies should consider the preferred payment methods for each region and each customer group separately. This can present a daunting research task for a business to do on its own.

Future outlooks for the travel industry


Modern challenges require modern solutions. A great example of forward-thinking innovation is the usage of open APIs for the seamless integration of new payment methods. Open APIs play a crucial role when creating an ecosystem of travel-related partners, offering travelers a complete customer journey built around their trips. NextGen payment technologies, which are built on open APIs, allow such travel ecosystems to thrive by enabling an easy data exchange between partners. This creates a smooth checkout, letting customers purchase from different partners without having to leave the online shop. To make purchases in the ecosystem, the customer only needs to provide their information once to access a myriad of services from within the web of different merchants and providers.

 

As such, customer can enjoy an effortless way of paying, while partners get access to profitable cross- and up-selling opportunities. And with the help of tokenization technology, the partners of the ecosystem never have to handle the sensitive customer data directly.


To learn more about online payments in travel retail, its challenges and how you can overcome them, download The Future of Payments in Travel.  

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