Improving Your Airport’s Conversion Rate Through Ecommerce
Traditionally airport revenues were based on passenger fees and landing charges, with some airports almost totally dependent on aeronautical sources. Revenue was enhanced through car parking, food and beverage sales and retail, with foreign exchange, banking services, vending machines, property leasing, hotels and passenger lounges all giving the opportunity for increased passenger spend.
Now as airports find their competitive place alongside other retailers, integrating data capture and customer profiles into their retail strategies, increasingly the trend is towards ecommerce, passenger engagement and a retail-centred in-airport experience.
Outside the airport, studies show that only 22% of businesses are satisfied with their current ecommerce conversion rate (the number of site visitors and online shop browsers who actually complete a purchase). While no online retailer can expect to achieve a 100% conversion rate, 67% of all dropped sales happen right at checkout stage.
As retailers look to build strategies to make those customers count, airports can learn from that experience, improving their own conversion rates and increasing revenue.
Align Your CRM and Conversion Plan
With integrated parking and travel systems such as those offered by Rezcomm, it is easy for airports to gather information about customers and prospects. This data can be stored, analysed and segmented in the CRM system.
Segmentation is important in the targeting of ecommerce marketing, allowing the airport to discover the most converting type of traffic, and making it possible to display the right message to the right person at the right time.
Segmentation can be used to promote products based on the current season, passenger destination, weather, and personal shopping habits of returning customers, prompting targeted, timely marketing of different products.
CRM reports can also be used to analyse website data: What site visitors are searching for and where they enter and exit the airport website. This information can be used to optimise the site, for example, by ensuring visitors can easily find information and products, and by populating the homepage with things visitors are looking for.
Reducing the perceived conversion path is a simple way to increase conversion.
Similarly, analysis of pages that have the highest exit rate can be a key to conversion. Those pages can be updated with a call-to-action such as an overlay, ‘Are you sure,’ linking to popular content and offers.
Compete With Free Shipping
Surveys have shown that shipping charges are a major contributing factor when a customer abandons a purchase at checkout. In 2012, Milo found that 74% of people had left a purchase due to high delivery charges, and increasingly ecommerce retailers such as Amazon are leading customer expectation for free delivery.
Amazon has gone one step further. In 2015 the company rolled out lockers where customers could pick up their online luxury purchases, in direct competition with airport retail. The lockers, which are available at airports including Birmingham and Amsterdam Schiphol allow customers to make a purchase online and pick it up on their way to or from their destination.
With this facility in place, and with Amazon competing on price on many luxury products, there is nothing to stop someone from using the free airport WiFi to price-check the product they want in duty free, then ordering it online to collect from the airport locker on the way home.
The airport has an advantage in that it has the space to and resources to offer its own pick-up options. Customers who buy flights or parking online can be directed to special offers within the airport retail. Purchases made upfront can be collected at the airport at either end of the journey. Flexible pick-up options are the key to beating the dampener that shipping charges put on conversion rates.
Reduce Cart Abandonment With an Exit Offer
Yes, exit offers can be annoying, but if a customer is about to click away without completing a purchase, they can also be the difference between a sale and no sale. There is nothing lost if a pop-up offer irritates a customer who was not planning to return to the website anyway.
Offer an incentive such as a voucher or discount before the customer leaves the site, reminding them of promotions or relevant products. Use scarcity to persuade visitors in the most important phase of their shopping journey. By offering a discount that is only valid today, the customer gets a sense of exclusivity that will drive them to place an order at the special price.
Use WiFi Signup to Connect
Customers who have bought flights and parking from outside companies can be engaged using WiFi sign up. With the vast majority of passengers carrying a mobile device, most people will want to sign up to a free WiFi network at the airport, and once they’ve done so, the first thing they do is check their email.
Use the signup to trigger an automated, personalised ‘welcome’ email, giving the chance to sign up for special offers, up/cross sells and useful on-site information.
Make Important Buttons and Forms Stand Out
Things that may seem like small details can make a big difference. Visual triggers such as coloured buttons and easy-to-read forms are more likely to ensure customer engagement. For example, if you want your customer to fill out a form, hiding a horizontal design under the scrolling fold of your page will result in far fewer engagements than a form that is immediately accessible.
Optimise for Omnichannel Shoppers
54% of shoppers abandon a purchase because of ‘technical problems,’ according to Econsultancy and TolunaQuick
If a customer’s conversion path and checkout experience is flawed on a particular browser or device, that customer is more likely to drop their attempt to purchase.
Make sure your ecommerce path is optimised for mobile, and regularly run your website through a browser testing programme that checks mobile and desktop function, especially after making changes or updates.
Convey Trust With A Secure Network
It’s been more than 15 years since the first ecommerce website launched, but people are still not always confident to give credit card information over the Internet. Remove those insecurities, giving customers assurance that the checkout system is secure.
HTTPS (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure) is the secure version of HTTP, the standard protocol over which data is sent between your airport’s website and the customer’s browser. A customer can see at a glance when an online store checkout switches to HTTPS, and can continue in the knowledge that all checkout information is encrypted, keeping details such as their credit card information safe.
In a competitive online retail environment, increased conversion rates will result in increased revenue. Take time to implement these simple steps and watch your airport’s e-commerce sales rise.
If you would like to speak to Rezcomm about how our eMarketing support and CRM systems can help with ecommerce revenue growth, contact us today.