There’s no single channel that will allow your business to survive and thrive. Rather than relying on only one channel, you should create a distribution strategy that allows you to maximize the best channels for tour and activity business.
What is a Distribution Channel?
A distribution channel is a portal in which a tour and activity operator can receive a diverse range of bookings. A distribution channel can be another business or a chain of businesses through which the tour operator can access prospective travelers.
The Best Channels for Tour Operators
- Your Website — Your tour and activity website is perhaps your most vital distribution channel, as it allows you to receive direct bookings that generate significant revenue. Integrate your online booking system with your website in order to accept bookings from both desktop and mobile devices.
- Social Networking Platforms — This is another way for you to reach a high volume of prospective travelers without paying commission fees to agents. You should develop a presence on social networking sites like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. Be sure to add direct booking buttons to these profiles so that users can quickly make reservations for your tours and activities.
- Online Review Sites — Online review sites, like TripAdvisor, are a necessary distribution channel for tour operators. An increasing number of travelers rely on these sites for honest feedback about the businesses they are considering for their trips. On TripAdvisor, you can add a booking button to your profile and also use TripAdvisor widgets on your tour and activity website.
- Daily Deal Sites — Voucher sites like Groupon and LivingSocial can help you reach travelers abroad as well as locals who may not normally consider booking a tour or activity with you.
- Destination Management Organizations — Your local government likely has a destination tourism website in which it promotes activities and things to do in the area. Partner with your DMO to help drive more tourism business in your region.
- Hotel Concierges — With the right online booking system, you can allow hotel concierges to book your tours and activities directly. They can easily earn a commission while providing their guests with useful and helpful information about what they can do during their stay.
- Visitor Information Centres — Most destinations have a Visitor Information Centre, or VIC, in a central location. The agents who work at these centres provide guests with information on activities to do in the area, and you can allow them to resell your tours for a commission. This is an easy way to drive last-minute bookings and generate buzz about your business in the community.
Of course, the only way to connect all of your channels is through the use of a Channel Manager. In addition to being the top online booking system for tour and activity providers, Rezdy also offers a Channel Manager tool that allows you to execute your distribution strategy and provide all of your agents with your live availability and current rates.
To learn more about how Rezdy can help your tour and activity business thrive, begin your free demo today.