Travel Sector Insights

Introduction and Sector Overview

Like other sectors the travel industry was dominated by speculation about the effect of the EU Referendum in the run up to the vote in June. The subsequent decision to leave had an immediate impact on the industry with sterling dropping in value and the likes of Thomas Cook, EasyJet, On the Beach and Tui Group all suffering slumps in their share prices after the result. Prior to the result some UK travellers had sought to pre-empt the impact by panic-buying foreign currency in anticipation of an exit decision and many exchange retailers saw a spike in sales because of this. While the dramatic fall in the value of sterling against foreign currencies is expected to slow demand for holidays abroad this summer, inbound tourism from other countries (which was already strong) is expected to rise with the weak pound offering visitors to the UK better value for money. Many travel comparison sites are already reporting huge surges in holiday searches for the UK from global traffic.

In other travel news away from the Brexit vote, the UNWTO revealed that the global international travel industry had grown by 3.6% year-on-year to $1.4tn with the biggest rise coming from Chinese tourists whose spend rose by 25% alone. The organisation claimed that this was in line with their current forecast and predicted that the outlook for world travel for the rest of 2016 was positive with Asia (+6%) leading the way followed by North America (+5%) and then Europe (+2.8%).

Affiliate Sector Insights Snapshot – June 2016

In the following interactive Tableau Public report we’ve included insights across the various travel subsectors since 2013 including airlines, travel agencies, airport parking and hotels & accommodation to name a few. Across the whole travel sector for 2016 we’ve seen 138 active advertisers so far this year, driving sales from nearly 1,800 sale active affiliates. Across all publisher types and subsectors we’ve seen around 321,000 average daily clicks, driving a total conversion rate of nearly 4%. The AOV across the travel sector is £180, with affiliates earning on average £0.21 per click and £5.33 per sale. This year we saw strongest performance in January and February, however AOV was slightly lower than average at £177 with advertisers typically running sales and offers during this period.

  • Hotels & Accommodation: for 2016 year to date we’ve seen an AOV of £169. Conversion rate is currently at 3.99% across the sector, with an average commission of £4.57. We see around 40% of total traffic from content sites, which also convert 36% of bookings, with discount code sites converting 29% of total bookings. Around 22% of bookings are completed on mobile devices with smartphones outpacing tablets by 4%

  • Airlines: by contrast this subsector sees a higher AOV than the travel sector average at £300 for year to date, with affiliates earning £8.14 per sale on average. The conversion rate is lower at 2.33%, with nearly 3,400 clicks driven in the sector per day. 28% of traffic is driven from mobile devices, whilst only 12% of bookings are made on them, showing dominance of desktop still for this subsector for conversion

  • Travel Agencies: including OTAs, this subsector is comprised of 32 advertisers driving on average 52,000 daily clicks from 652 sale active affiliates. The conversion rate is slightly higher at 3.57%, with an AOV of £249 for 2016 year to date. The sector also drives a higher than average EPC of £0.34, earning affiliates £9.57 per sale. Almost half of all bookings are converted on mobile devices with smartphones completing 19% of bookings (vs. 22% for tablets). January is definitively the booking peak for this year, equalling 22% of total bookings between January and June

  • Airport Parking: differently from other subsectors, Airport Parking saw peak bookings in May this year so far. Year to date we’ve seen an AOV of £50, and a high conversion rate of 10.11%. This earns affiliates £0.29 per click and £2.91 per booking. 39% of traffic and 24% of bookings are from mobile devices. Unlike other subsectors cashback sites dominate bookings, accounting for 51% of total transactions, followed by discount code sites accounting for 27% of bookings

  • Tickets, Tourism & Attractions this subsector sees around 48,000 clicks on average from over 460 sale active affiliates. The sector AOV is currently at £121 for 2016 year to date, with conversion rate at 2.67% and an average commission of £2.68. More than half of all traffic was driven from mobile devices, with smartphones accounting for 30% of traffic and 22% of transactions

  • Local Holidays the local holidays sectors has the second highest subsector AOVs at £366 for 2016 year to date. The sector EPC is a lucrative £0.39, with conversion rate at 2.34% and average commission at a high £16.76. 58% of traffic was from mobile devices with tablets driving 27% of bookings vs. 16% for smartphones. Cashback sites convert 29% of bookings, closely followed by discount code sites closing 26% of bookings

  • Travel Insurance across this subsector we’ve seen a high AOV this year to date at £491, with conversion rate equally high at 10.57%. This has resulted in an EPC of £0.60 and average commission of £5.72 for publishers. June 2016 saw the highest percentage of transactions this year, with an AOV of £593. Across the year 37% of traffic was from mobile devices with 8% of transactions from smartphones and 20% from tablets. Content sites convert the highest percentage of sales at 45% with cashback accounting for 34%

The following Tableau Public report is an interactive report with our sector data. Play around with the filters in the report below to see how the data changes by sub sector and look at various metrics such as transactions and AOV. 

Tags: travel, tableau public, holidays, hotels

AWIN Strategy Team
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