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February 2014 - The focus of the year ahead

2013 was a busy year for TourCMS with a major increase in suppliers using us to run their websites, their daily operations and their distribution to travel agents, hotel concierges and web affiliates. Collectively we did around 100 million USD through the system (and 2014 is looking like a 200 million USD year)

People always ask us what is our focus going forwards? It is actually quite a hard question to answer in public but here goes

Day tours & transfers

  • Continue to build great distribution partnerships with some of the leading travel websites in the world - making it easy for suppliers to work with great demand driving companies
  • Continue working on our incoming API - so that companies who are not using TourCMS as a reservation system (and why not!) are still able to access the distribution opportunities we are creating.
  • Redesign the main backoffice to make it more suitable for smaller tour operators. Right now we have put in a lot of advanced, fairly complex to learn, functionality due to working with the largest day tour suppliers. We need to make that power more controllable.
  • Announce the cross industry voucher redemption service we have been building up....  that enables the larger online travel agents to really start delivering mobile bookings at a few hours notice (rather than days / weeks before travel)
  • More functionality around yield management / combo tours (tours that share same availability - e.g. a bus)

Multi-day tours

  • Multi-day is much more focused on CRM (for multiple bookings from the same customer, over time). Hence we need to work on improved customer duplication tools and newsletter tool integration.
  • Better itinerary document creation so you can really impress your clients with wonderful pre-sale documentation
  • Continuing to build up distribution relationships with the multi-day partners that are out there. They are not as numerous as the day tour distributors, but the ones that are out there, do a great job at driving high margin bookings

We are also focusing again on our "software as a service" concept that does mean support via methods that scale for us. For example I worked out that if I personally had a 1 hour phone call with every supplier, once a year, it would take me all of January, February, March, on 8 phone calls a day, 5 days a week, to talk to everyone. That doesn't scale so well :)

Best wishes and see you at ITB Berlin (if you are there)

Alex Bainbridge

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