Surf the online booking wave to greater profits

30 Sep 2015

This year, a long predicted internet event finally took place, when the number of mobile users overtook desktop users. The passing of this milestone has major implications for business aviation, and Avinode is excited to be helping various companies capitalize on the associated opportunities using our Avinode Marketplace API.

The explosive growth of mobile technology has been a defining feature of the past decade. In 2015, several events showed that we have finally reached the tipping point in mobile internet usage.

In May, Google reported that more Google searches were taking place on mobile devices than on desktop computers in ten countries, including the US and Japan. In June, mobile digital media time in the US was revealed as significantly higher than desktop, at 51% compared to 42%, according to top venture capitalist and ‘Queen of the Net’ Mary Meeker. In July, Facebook’s second quarter earnings showed mobile as representing over 85% of its daily usage, which the following month hit one billion people for the first time ever.

The trend towards mobile internet use has had a significant impact on how information is presented and consumed. ‘Responsive’ website design, which automatically optimises layouts for mobile or desktop users, is now essential for any business using the internet to market and sell its output.

Some business aviation companies have gone a step further to attract mobile users by launching their own mobile apps. In part, these app proponents are seeking to attract customers who are new to business air charter. By offering more of a ‘consumer online experience’, these companies hope to make booking a more intuitive, transparent and attractive process for the newcomer.

However, whether you favour a mobile-friendly website or mobile app, success really depends on offering content and functionality that customers want. For many business aviation brokers and operators, this requirement means offering users a sophisticated and robust online quoting/booking tool. At Avinode, we are excited to be working with market-leading innovators, such as Victor and Blue Star Jets, to deliver this functionality to their apps and websites via our Marketplace API.

The Avinode API, or ‘Application Program Interface’, is effectively a channel that enables us to deliver our aircraft, operator and empty leg search functionality and data directly to your clients or internal users through your own web, mobile or desktop application, with seamless integration.

By subscribing to Avinode’s API, a range of opportunities opens up to you. You can organise and style Avinode’s content to suit your business, enjoying full control over the features, design and architecture of your application. You can decide whether to use Avinode to enhance a web, mobile or desktop application – our API is compatible with all. We enable you to combine content from a variety of sources, brand the content as your own and optimise your website for SEO purposes. Lastly, we have developed the API using industry standards (REST web services delivering JSON-formatted content) to ensure it is easy for your development team to work with.

The customer appeal of online search is clear from the relentless upward trend in the number of searches performed using our API. In August 2015 alone, more than 48,000 searches were made through Avinode-powered mobile apps and web applications.

Avinode’s leadership in market technology gives us a unique vantage point on what these developments may mean for business aviation and its customers. We believe that business aviation is approaching a technology shift that will see many more transactions move online, in a similar way to how the mainstream travel industry has been transformed by online bookings over the past 15 years. Whether the proportion of online bookings will be as great remains to be seen, but it is clear to us that tomorrow’s market leaders will be those addressing the mobile challenge today.

Clive Jackson Founder and CEO of VICTOR, one of the top 100 fastest growing technology companies, agrees, “Today’s customer wants and expects a seamless customer experience where the supply of timely and relevant information can be delivered and recalled via any channel or device with the minimum of effort. This customer experience requires a sophisticated level of data integration.”

He continues, “Having introduced Victor’s end-to-end online quote, comparison, booking and settlement platform in 2011, I am convinced that Avinode’s commitment to providing a truly independent range of API services will help many more charter brokers feel confident about developing their own online and mobile customer channels. Our experience working with the team at Avinode has been nothing but exemplary.”

The future of your business is linked to the future of online commerce.Find out more about how our APIs and off-the-shelf apps can save you both time and money.

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