TUI UK & Ireland, part of TUI Group, is the business behind the TUI, First Choice and Marella Cruises brands, as well as Crystal Ski Holidays and TUI Lakes & Mountains. Sub brands include TUI Sensatori, TUI Family Life, TUI Seminar, First Choice Holiday Villages and SplashWorld Resorts.
Its airline, TUI Airways has 64 aircraft operating to over 70 destinations in 30 countries. It was the first airline in the UK to take delivery of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner and in 2018 welcomed new 737 MAXs to its fleet.
TUI UK and Ireland has a team of more than 10,000 employees and serves over six million customers each year.
Key KPIs delivered by Taggstar
messages forecast for 2018
messages delivered in January 2017
The challenge for TUI is to give its online customers confidence in its destinations and venues by adopting sophisticated digital tools – including social proof messaging – to optimize website conversion and overall spend.
It’s normal for travellers to take their time making a decision. Annual vacations are a big ticket item and no one wants to make a mistake with the most important fortnight of the year and, for some, their only overseas break.
Insight shows that browsers can visit a holiday site as many as nine or more times before choosing. This can create a gulf of days or weeks between vacation research and the moment that they finally click ‘buy.’
An early adopter in the online travel industry, and already using a number of software tools to boost sales, TUI was considering using the wisdom of the crowd – specifically social proof messaging – to help drive conversion rate increases.
TUI wanted to work with a social proof specialist which could deliver in time for the annual vacation industry January rush.
TUI’s web product team tuned to Taggstar to supply real-time social proof messaging across the three brands in November 2015. By December, the software was live and influencing an upward sales trend by mid-month.
Taggstar messages initially launched on all-inclusive package vacation provider First Choice, showing detail important to the product on every single vacation package over the peak holiday booking period. The site showed popularity and scarcity messages such as “100 people have looked at this hotel in the last hour” and “70+ people booked this in the last seven days” to reassure customers that they were choosing a popular destination that would meet their expectations.
TUI has complete control of the look and feel of the messages, with the ability to choose placement on page, color and font. Taggstar supports the deployment with five years social proof messaging expertize, a message experimentation with new message types, and professional services to further extend the messaging through the online customer journey.
“We’ve measured a major increase in eCommerce conversions directly linked to Taggstar.”
Anthony Hopwood, Senior Web Product Owner
The First Choice trial ran for three months, and delivered eight million messages about destinations and venues, across all devices. First results were outstanding.
The success of the initial Taggstar trial convinced TUI to extend the product across the Thomson.co.uk and Falcon Holiday sites – both now TUI – in early 2016. Results showed extra sales linked directly to using Taggstar, with a peak conversion rate uplift during January 2016, again attached to using real-time social proof messages.
TUI has now used Taggstar constantly for more than four years.
In January 2018 alone, Taggstar delivered over 29 million messages – up over 200% from December 2017 – showing the software’s ability to scale in line with customer demand.
TUI and Taggstar continue to A/B test new messages, and have a roadmap in place to further increase eCommerce conversions.