Why social proof is the gold standard for trustworthy travel

Monday, February 11, 2019
Trailfinders holiday

It’s 2019. The world has never been more connected; there have never been more travel offers floating through our inboxes and across our feeds. But does this make it any easier to confidently choose a trip provider?

The paradox of choice is alive and well on the internet, and for those seeking the perfect vacation, more choice can feel like more potential to be misled.

With two in five Brits (43%) reporting a very real fear of travel scams, and 23% of US consumers surviving a misleading experience with travel resellers, it’s safe to say that globetrotters everywhere are wary of making the wrong choice.

But is there anything travel companies can do to reassure potential customers? The team at Trailfinders, a UK-based travel company, says yes.

Reassurance is key for a high stakes purchasing decision

Here’s something we can all relate to: vacations are precious, both literally and figuratively. Despite our best efforts, few people can jet off whenever the mood strikes.

To put it in perspective, 74% of people cite vacations as their biggest personal expense each year, and 68% regard trips as an important investment in self care. With so much personal value tied up in vacations, it stands to reason that 66% of consumers say trips and vacations are the purchasing decision they spend the most time researching.

But what exactly are they looking for?

Our research shows that they’re on the lookout for “trust symbols”, or any form of reassurance that clicking BUY will lead to a live action version of their day dreams.

Travel brands can easily signal trust with simple actions that carry big effects — offering a phone line for customer service, clarifying the nature of any associated fees, or displaying social proof in the form of reviews, to name a few.

According to our survey results, here are the ones that mean the most to scrutinizing vacationers:

trust symbols for travel

Of all these signals, displaying social proof through online reviews gives travel companies the most mileage — in other words, collecting and showcasing a diverse range of customer feedback can tick all ten items from the list with a single tactical move.

For Trailfinders, that tactical move took the form of a TrustBox on their site:

Trailfinders Trustbox

When you focus on improving customer experience, word travels fast

According to Trailfinders, “Trustpilot helps us reduce consumer doubt and increase trust and confidence through third-party validation. Leveraging our verified reviews through the TrustBox widget also proves to new and existing travellers that our customer's voice matters to us. We recommend Trustpilot as a great and easy way to power your business forward."

And while we can’t thank them enough for the kind words, we believe their success is less to do with what review widget they use, and everything to do with their 48-year commitment to exceptional client service.

If your travel company is ready to grow brand trust and show brand trust, schedule a demo today.

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