Worlds apart: Three different approaches to abandonment emails in the travel industry Published July 11, 2017 Making travel plans can take hours. With multiple booking options, reviews to read and prices to compare, we’ve become obsessed with finding the best deal possible. With this in mind, it’s no wonder that the travel industry suffers from one of the highest abandonment rates online with 81% of people leaving a site without making a booking (Salescycle, 2016). Travel providers regularly send automated abandonment emails using technology such as PureTargeting but even once you’ve got a sophisticated campaign set up, the work doesn’t stop there. We always recommend brands regularly review and update their abandonment emails to keep things fresh and make sure they’re taking advantage of the latest thinking. A well-optimised abandonment programme will become another important sales channel with these campaigns converting nearly a third (29.9%) of potential customers who click on them (eConsultancy, 2015). We take a look at three travel providers that use different tactics when it comes to travel abandonment emails and review the variety of approaches to recapturing the customer’s attention. Airbnb – tempting them to take another look Airbnb do a great job of following-up recent search behaviour on their site by triggering automated emails to prompt users to come back and review their options again. They tempt them with photos and new information about the properties – all aimed at convincing them to follow through and book. And if the accommodation wasn’t quite right they present them with a whole host of alternatives based on their search requirements. Virgin Trains – promoting a sense of urgency For a browser to take a second look you need to grab their attention. Virgin Trains target previous visitors with their quirky abandonment email that makes browsers take a double-take. They’re not afraid to put the pressure on either by promoting a sense of urgency with their ‘book now or miss out message’. And they give potential bookers a gentle nudge in the right direction by pointing out there are no booking fees and telling you about the bonus Nectar points you’ll receive. Thomas Cook – making booking easier Thomas Cook know that sometimes browsers just need a little more help and sometimes that help can be best found in-person. They direct abandoned browsers to their phone lines and stores reassuring them that a helpful member of their team will be able to answer their questions directly. And knowing that the browser may have just paused their research temporarily, they helpfully save the person’s search results meaning the potential customer can come back and pick-up where they left off. These are just a handful of the options available to you and using PureTargeting you can optimise the effectiveness of your abandonment campaigns by integrating real-time availability, price updates, personalised suggestions and saved searches. Travellers are confused – they need ideas, gentle reassurance and direction. They’re all browsing and price shopping, waiting for the right deal or right location to jump out at them. And of course, travel providers can make this happen just a little bit quicker by using PureTargeting to tempt them back to book.