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comScore research for Expedia: Advertising has biggest impact during the initial stages of travel booking [REPORT]
21 November 2016
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We're looking here at just one section of the comScore Traveler's Path to Purchase report commissioned by Expedia. Section is entitled:

Impact of Advertising on Travel Booking Decisions

Key findings:

  • 30% of Britons, 27% of Americans and 38% of Canadians said they were influenced by advertising when considering more than one destination.
  • 59% of Britons, 47% of Americans and 64% of Canadians who booked travel recalled seeing a travel ad while shopping or booking.
  • In response to the question "When did you notice advertising related to each travel service (that is: Hotel, Air, Package, Car rental, Cruise)?" Britons, Americans and Canadians in aggregate replied:
    • When I first started: 49% (Car rental) to 66% (Air, Cruise)
    • Right before booking: 19% (Air, Cruise) to 30% (Car rental)
  • Travel bookers said they recalled fewer ads as ad impressions increased:
    • Britons had average recall rates of 54% when they first started shopping, 32% when they were narrowing options, 18% right before booking.
    • Comparable figures for Americans were: 66%, 54%, 34%.
    • For Canadians: 73%, 51%, 29%.

Key insights from these findings:

  • About one third or more of online travel bookers were influenced by advertising when considering more than one destination.
  • Advertising recall is the highest in the initial stages of the purchase journey, when exposure is the lowest.

To which I would add:

  • In terms of both influence and recall, it seems that Canadians and Britons are somewhat more susceptible to advertising than are Americans. (Americans more cynical?)

Advertising works better for those selling air travel and cruises than it does for those selling car rental; hotels and tours fall in between.

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