3 Must-Have Features of a Great Internet Booking Engine

With airlines looking increasingly like e-commerce businesses that also happen to fly planes, the internet booking engine (IBE) takes center stage in any airline’s IT strategy.

As many carriers have come to realize, using an average IBE that just “does the job” is no longer an option.

Does your Internet Booking Engine have what it takes to stand out in today’s ultra-competitive airline industry?

Let’s have a look…

1. Are you able to offer a differentiated experience based on who your customers are?

If you are looking for the hottest areas in the airline industry right now, it is not about low cost business models anymore, or even about ancillaries - both are now taken as a given - innovative airlines are, instead, looking for ways to personalize the booking experience.

In the midst of the customization mania that is gripping the whole air travel industry, it becomes imperative that your IBE is able to manage dynamic flows.

What do we understand by “dynamic flows”? Basically, the ability of an internet booking engine to adapt its content and offerings to match specific user profiles.

Many airlines give, of course, the chance to its customers to sign in onto their websites and provide personal information. But the really clever trick is to be able to match the customer’s preferences without having access to this sort of personal information, just on the basis of the user behaviour while using the booking engine.

3 Must-Have Features of a Great Internet Booking Engine

2. Do not marry your Passenger Service System!

While the Passenger Service System (PSS) remains the core of any airline’s IT systems - and easily the largest technology expense too - its role as an element of differentiation is increasingly limited, some may even say that it is becoming commoditized.

Therefore, do not let your PSS hold you up. Make sure, instead, that you have a flexible IBE that can easily integrate with any platform.

In short, a PSS-agnostic IBE, and one that is also able to connect with the myriad of third party software suppliers and partner companies that contribute to the success of the most commercially-savvy airlines.

As the customer-facing bit of your IT infrastructure, it is actually the IBE that has the largest potential to make or break your digital sales efforts. It is the interaction with the IBE that determines, to a very large degree whether a customer ends up booking or not. It is, therefore, one of the main factors to determine the success, or not, of your airline.

3. Make it fool-proof

The fast-moving airline business requires commercial agility, whether it is testing new services and offerings, designing campaigns to target specific customer groups or doing the corresponding A/B tests to fine-tune your marketing, you need your marketing team to be able to react fast.

Bottlenecks are inevitable if even the smallest changes affecting your internet booking engine need to go through the IT team.

A winning IBE is that that combines superb performance with ease of use. So that the different departments at your airline that are involved in distribution, marketing and sales can make the most out of the IBE’s capabilities without being dependent on the, often overstretched, IT department.

How does your IBE score on all these counts?

We, at Newshore, can help you with to get a World-class IBE up and running in record time.

The design and implementation of Internet Booking Engines is one of our core areas of expertise. Years of experience in the development of technological solutions for some of the World’s most innovative airlines have been condensated into our new IBE generation: newshore_booking

Contact us for a consultation. We will be delighted to help!