What’s the big deal with travelling nowadays? How often should you do it and is it worth the experience to go to exotic places regularly? Well, did you know that a big part of happiness and health depends on moving around? I don’t simply mean exercise though, but actually going to new, exciting, and vibrant environments whether they be physical or social.
This idea makes more sense if you approach it from a comparative standpoint: the person who spends more time travelling, meeting new people, and being productive or relaxing in different environments usually has more to be happy about than a person who locks themselves in their room for the majority of the day and doesn’t keep a good sleep schedule.
Don’t just take my word for it though, any number of studies point out the benefits of exercise (really, any Google search will show this overwhelmingly), and the negative impact of social isolation on health is also a well-documented phenomenon described in several studies linked here and here.
Once you start thinking about this issue a bit more, you might realize that it’s really something that’s incredibly common. After all, just how many people spend their days cooped up in an office cubicle in the same position for eight hours? In reality, this need is exactly what a number of touring, activity, and rental companies are aiming to capitalize on.
But with so many people and groups each requiring and demanding unique itineraries for different types of trips, it’s no surprise that the logistical, organizational, and administrative processes related to the online booking mechanisms of these companies can easily get out of hand. That’s where Adventure Bucket List shines. In the realm of efficient, orderly, and intuitive online booking Adventure Bucket List and its proprietary software AGENDA grants businesses a seamless solution for coordinating reservations. The automation and clean design of digital booking solutions offered by Adventure Bucket List helps businesses save money, resources, time, and most of all creates marked increases in sales through the convenience it offers to customers.
Let’s delve into the particulars of online reservations and bookings, as well as explore how Adventure Bucket List’s automation capabilities truly embody the logistical backbone for any company relying on reservation-based delivery looking to scale their business.
The Current State of Online Booking
Taking a brief look at the recent playing field of online booking and reservations, you’ll find a number of solutions that use similar technologies and appear generic and pretty indistinct from similar competitors. It’s no stretch to say that companies specifically offering software or virtual infrastructure to handle online reservations are still in a relatively nascent and experimental phase. There is a decently sized gulf between publicly offered online reservation systems made available by a third party and a big company’s own internal, private online reservation systems such as the ones that prominent airline companies may use to efficiently book flights, calculate how much overbooking is appropriate, and to make smooth, last-minute adjustments to optimize seating. The more involved online reservations are for a business, the more competitively inclined the business will be towards creating and preserving proprietary and innovative breakthroughs that dramatically enhance that reservation process. Let’s consider some of the explicit differences in features, extensiveness, and quality with regards to public and private online reservation systems in order to scope out this market.
A superficial Google search will turn up at least ten different results of online reservation companies that offer a number of generic record and timekeeping features among other things. This sample dashboard view for administrators provided by SimplyBook.me demonstrates the formulaic and rather tired approach that many of these online reservation companies advertise.
Figure 1: Generic dashboard view, feature list, and administrator tools offered by online booking services.
It looks pretty well-made and sleek, but don’t be fooled by the design - this booking service doesn’t really offer any new advantages over other competitors. In fact, by visiting any number of other online reservation systems that advertise their services and software publicly like BookingBug, Capterra, Skedda, BookFresh, and so forth, you’ll quickly find that this set of companies really offers a rehashed and redesigned version of the features shown above.
The trend of companies promoting and focusing on design and the visual aesthetics of their software rather than its functionality and ability to create consistent, attributable increases in sales is one of the common problems to be wary of when navigating through this dense list of public online reservation services. As a straightforward example of how some of these companies play up their designs to compensate for functionality, consider that some softwares offer integration with and depend on the free Google Calendar, an easy-to-use but limited platform.
Interestingly, companies that are responsible for creating private versions and variants of online scheduling and reservation software usually produce an incredibly optimized and efficient system. The fiercely competitive nature of companies that rely on very minute advantages and distinctions when offering conveniences like online reservations fuels the invention of robust software. Hotels like those mentioned in the above study are prime examples of the relevant market under which private innovation in online booking services develops. Patents such as this one which offer greater assurance and security features when it comes to evaluating site visitors who are making those online reservations.
If we take a step back and think about the practical uses that companies like United Airlines need to account for, and the customer spending trends that they need to characterize through data, the need for a unique fitting and tailored booking system becomes more evident. For instance, the ability to sort through any number of possible flights within a given time range, or to keep track of customers participating in reward programs constitute two key reasons that an airline company like United might need to grapple with individually.
Figure 2: A screenshot of the Award Calendar arranged by United and integrated into their booking logistics.
While a color coded set of dates appears pretty basic, the continual need to update those options in real-time, and compensate for customers that have already selected for certain options, illustrates the level of sophistication that some online reservation and booking algorithms used by large private companies reach.
The Competitive Advantage: Adventure Bucket List
There’s a clear reason for the tremendous gap between the relatively developing and nascent features offered by third-party companies to help book and organize online reservations and the generally advanced, well-constructed, and tailored online booking systems of big companies. That reason is price, more accurately it relates to the costs necessary to research, develop, and implement a unique online reservation system. Those costs are usually outside the budgets of small businesses that want a robust reservation system to fit with their attempts to scale and grow, but at the same time are faced with the conundrum of not having the resources to dedicate to that upgrade in virtual infrastructure.
We’ve taken a look at the differences between the level of sophistication and reliability offered by public and private (internal) online reservation systems, as well as the reasons for why there is such a disparity. Imagine now that an online reservation system was developed that held the best of both worlds. A reservation system sophisticated enough to offer features such as customizability, flexibility, security, and adaptability but also not exclusive or guarded because it is publicly available to businesses. That’s where Adventure Bucket List comes into the limelight.
Adventure Bucket List technically belongs to the category of publicly available online reservation software. However, the complexity and coverage that its systems offer are objectively superior to the generic, functionally limited platforms that seem ubiquitous and that really only offer a quick, transient fix to the increasing lack of organization that expanding businesses must deal with as they cope with software or administrative inefficiencies.
When it comes to online reservation management, Adventure Bucket List’s AGENDA accomplishes a number of crucial results that set it in a definitively higher technological and administrative stratum than other public tools. It focus on tour and activity operations has resulted in these sharpened benefits:
While Adventure Bucket List offers a comprehensive set of features that grants companies a newfound level of functionality when it comes to tasks related to online reservation management, we still have yet to see some real-life examples and applications of those features to really prove how effective and impactful the software can be for businesses. Let’s take a look at some of the differences that AGENDA has made in lives of business owners and the specific types of logistical problems that AGENDA is geared towards addressing.
Solving Traditional Inefficiency: Windsure Water Sports
The idea of a traditional inefficiency stems from the disconnect between technology and businesses. This is to say that the public’s sense and expectations of communications technology is updated and renewed at a much faster rate than what is regularly available or affordable to small businesses. So it is often the case that you might have small businesses that never had a good chance to revamp their reservation systems and are still relying on past technologies such as phone booking in order to serve their clients.
This was the case for one Canadian company, Windsure Water Sports, and its owner Bernard Labrosse. Labrosse’s motivation for starting a company is one that most of us can relate to: he found something he was passionate about and discovered that he was able to create the same passion and enthusiasm for that thing by teaching others about it, eventually going on to make a business out of it. For Labrosse, this thing was windsurfing, and his location on the Burrard Inlet in British Columbia signified a prime spot to set-up shop because of its ideal wind conditions.
Initially founded in 1978, Windsure Water Sports steadily built up a reliable customer base and consistent clientele, but Labrosse noticed over the years that booking appointments over the phone for people became a task that was more and more laborious and inefficient. He remarks: “I used to spend hours on the phone with customers explaining all our different offerings and availability. People had to hang up the phone because they didn’t have time to listen.”
One huge thing that vindicates many of the points made about public and private online reservation systems and AGENDA’s unique place on the market is the fact that Adventure Bucket List was not the first reservation system Bernard came across. In reality, he had already tried a number of similar products, but found integration difficult, the solutions expensive, and customers turning away anyways because they couldn’t figure out the system.
The key distinguishing point that made an impact for Bernard and Windsure Water Sports is that customers actually responded positively to the new online reservation features introduced by AGENDA. And this impact is quantified through sales increases.
Solving Modern Logistical Inefficiencies: Dish Cooking Studio
Another common scenario businesses encounter when dealing with online reservation systems lies in modern logistical inefficiencies. While the results of a traditional inefficiency may result in logistical inefficiencies, the root cause is different. When it comes to modern logistical inefficiencies, the problems stem from software rather than the lack of an up-to-date reservation system.
Consider Pam’s cooking class business, Dish Cooking Studio. Arguably, Dish pursued the modern trend of online reservations by integrating bookings received by clients over email and phone through PayPal’s reservation system. One might think that a well-known and large company such as PayPal might offer an online reservation system or administrative service that could smoothly with the needs required of a modern, small business like Pam’s.
However, it was quickly revealed that PayPal’s record-keeping system was faulty, resulting in lost client information and unwanted overbooking situations. As Pam notes: "You have to know how many people are coming into a class to prepare the proper amount of food and we also staff based off the number of attendees. In the old system, we never really knew how many people were coming in and you can't do that in the food business, it made us look unprofessional.”
Once Dish began implementing Adventure Bucket List’s AGENDA, they were quickly able to determine and arrange the exact number of people coming to a class with a degree of automation, and even further were able to lock down a number of important details about clients such as food allergies. As a result, the company saw an increase in sales of close to 50% and 3-4 hours of work saved for workers who needed to attend to previous administrative duties.
In the technological field for online reservations, there exists a notable demarcation between the functionality of booking software’s available publicly and privately. Significantly, growing, small businesses attempting to acquire a level of virtual infrastructure suited to their specific scheduling needs are often faced with traditional or modern software-based inefficiencies. This leaves small businesses in an awkward spot as their expansion depends on the successful automation of part of the online reservation process. Adventure Bucket List’s AGENDA provides you with a robust way to bridge this gap through the security, customizability, and intuitiveness of its software’s architecture and integrability.