ForeSee Study: Southwest Airlines, Choice Hotels, Marriott Top Mobile Travel Satisfaction Index ForeSee study ranks top mobile travel sites and apps; Bookers happier than Lookers; Mobile users not so "mobile" PR Newswire ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 26, 2013 ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 26, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Customers give high marks to Southwest Airlines for providing the best mobile experience, making the airline the one to beat on mobile devices as well as in the air, according to new research from customer experience analytics firm ForeSee. The ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index: Travel Edition is a study of the mobile experiences of 25 major airlines, hotels, online travel agencies, and car rental companies. Customers gave Southwest a score of 82 on the 100-point scale, while Choice Hotels (80) and Marriott (79) rounded out the top three in terms of mobile satisfaction. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110819/DE54780LOGO) Of all the measured travel categories, hotel mobile sites and apps provide the best mobile experience, with an average score of 78. Airlines and car rental companies tie at 77, while online travel agencies score lowest at 76. "Simple is the rule. Customers are attracted to the convenience of the mobile platform and do not want a complicated experience," said Larry Freed, president and CEO of ForeSee. "That's much easier for a hotel company to do because they have fewer moving parts and a predictable inventory. Airlines introduce more variables like seat selection and variable pricing. Online travel agencies have the most difficult challenges because they're dealing with all of these factors. Making matters worse, some travel properties are trying to assert more control over their own customers by withholding inventory from the travel aggregators." Hotels: Choice Hotels and Marriott International lead the industry, while Best Western trails in terms of customer satisfaction with the mobile experience. Mobile Satisfaction with Hotel Sites and Apps Hotels Satisfaction Hotels: Average 78 Choice Hotels International 80 Marriott International 79 Hyatt Corp 78 Intercontinental Hotels & Resorts 78 Wyndham Hotels & Resorts 78 Hilton Worldwide 77 Starwood Hotels & Resorts Intl 77 Best Western International 76 Online Travel Agencies: Individual companies within the lowest performing category are closely grouped, with only three points separating category leaders Kayak and Travelocity at 78 and Hotels.com and Orbitz.com at 75. Competition is tight, and there is opportunity for differentiation and innovation. A disproportionately large percentage of leisure travelers (84%) visit the mobile sites and apps of online travel agencies. "Leisure travelers are more demanding than we thought," said Eric Feinberg, ForeSee senior director of mobile. "It is clear that travel aggregators need to do a better job of understanding what the leisure traveler needs." Mobile Satisfaction with Online Travel Agency Sites and Apps Online Travel Agencies (OTA) Satisfaction OTA: Average 76 Kayak.com 78 Travelocity.com 78 Expedia.com 76 Priceline.com 76 Hotels.com 75 Orbitz.com 75 Airlines: While Southwest is the undisputed king of satisfaction, the rest of the airline industry trails far behind, with no company within 5 points of the leader in mobile satisfaction. "Southwest's simple, friendly, and no-frills approach to doing business translates well in the air as well as online. No assigned seats and no fees for baggage help to simplify the process for the consumer, which no doubt contributes to a more satisfying mobile experience," added Feinberg. Mobile Satisfaction of Airline Sites and Apps Airlines Satisfaction Airlines: Average 77 Southwest Airlines 82 American Airlines 77 Delta Airlines 77 United Airlines 75 US Airways 74 Car Rentals: Avis and Enterprise share the podium at 78; Budget and Hertz tie for second with a 77. Dollar trails everyone at 75. Mobile Satisfaction with Car Rental Company Sites and Apps Car Rental Satisfaction Car Rental: Average 77 Avis Rent-a-Car 78 Enterprise Rent-a-Car 78 Budget 77 Hertz 77 Dollar 75 Other findings: oApps vs. Mobile Sites: Customers using mobile apps (78) are more satisfied with their mobile travel experience than those using mobile sites (77). Apps may benefit from a slightly higher score because their platform, unlike mobile sites, is tailored specifically to a mobile device. oNot-So-Mobile Users: More than 70% of mobile users book with various travel sites from home, while only 12% of app and site users combined claim to be on-the-go when booking similar services. oLookers vs. Bookers: More people access mobile travel sites and apps to research (43%) than book a service or flight (23%). And those who use the sites to simply research (77) are less satisfied than those who book (79). oSteer Clear of the Stars: Despite what customers may think, star ratings in app stores reveal very little when it comes to truly tracking the mobile experience. While a stars rating may be helpful from customer to customer, executives should be tuned in to satisfaction as a key performance indicator for any travel-related mobile investments. The ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index: Travel Edition is based on more than 6,000 survey responses collected in February 2013. The full index is available at www.foresee.com. FOR MORE INFORMATION: Chaat Butsunturn, Kearns & West 415-391-7900 x1214 firstname.lastname@example.org Amanda Piasecki, Kearns & West 202-535-7800 x1114 email@example.com About ForeSee As a pioneer in customer experience analytics, ForeSee continuously measures satisfaction across customer touchpoints and delivers critical insights on where to prioritize improvements for maximum impact. Because ForeSee's superior technology and proven methodology connect the customer experience to the bottom line, executives and managers are able to drive future success by confidently optimizing the efforts that will achieve business and brand objectives. The result is better business for companies and a better experience for consumers. ForeSee is headquartered in Ann Arbor, MI and can be found online at www.foresee.com. SOURCE ForeSee Website: http://www.foresee.com
ForeSee Study: Southwest Airlines, Choice Hotels, Marriott Top Mobile Travel Satisfaction Index
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