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Online travel agents and the growing quest for personalisation

I think the ultimate question is: How do we make consistently relevant recommendations without limiting choice? Consumers are drawn to OTA’s and user review websites because of the breadth of choice, and personalization paradoxically takes choices away from them. As consumers begin to encounter personalized solutions, it may be that at first they are uncomfortable with having their choices limited, but over time become trusting of the algorithms, if indeed the algorithms work well for them. Personalization also currently favors mobile, where discovery of the perfect travel app is more dependent on a great user experience than on the web where thousands of landing pages provide Google fodder.

Personalization in travel: Privacy, transparency and the reality of the consumer landscape

There will be many opportunities for companies to make major strides in personalizing the online travel search and planning process over the next few years as the amount of publicly available data continues to explode and people provide more and more access to their information, especially via 1-click mobile app updates, even if it is at the expense of privacy… Privacy will always be one of the biggest challenges in accessing the information necessary to truly make accurate and relevant proactive recommendations that will consistently resonate with people as their individual tastes change from day to day or year to year. The only ones who can get close enough to the customer to do this at scale seem to be Google, Facebook etc who have permission to access to emails, chats, calendars and other daily-use products, as well as checkins and other public data. The rest of us will have our best chances to address personalization well in our chosen niches.