Build or Buy? How a Platform like YouLi for your Group or Destination Events Company is the Answer
"I always felt like I had to build my own custom solution, and then I found YouLi group travel software!"
As a travel professional focused on creating unique group experiences, you might have started your business with a spreadsheet. You then discovered that scaling your group trips requires optimizing workflows and therefore, unique group travel software that supports your operations, including:
- Marketing the trips
- Processing group, split and individual payments
- Keeping all trip documents in one place
- Building professional custom itineraries fast
- Sharing itineraries, communicating updates and requirements
- Selling add-ons and optional activities
- Securely storing and sharing travelers' information with vendors and destination managers
Custom building the software for a travel business is expensive, time-consuming, and not guaranteed to achieve the desired results. Here is how you can save time, money, and your sanity.
- Build your tech stack over time (start from the booking platform and trip CRM instead of a website).
- Use webhook platforms like Zapier to connect multiple software you already have in place.
- Take time to evaluate the booking software (consider current features, development roadmap, and support).
Build YourTech Stack Over Time
It is common for adventure entrepreneurs to rush investing in a professional website and then find themselves struggling with the amount of manual labor and repetitive work on the back-end. The best practice in the adventure travel industry is to delegate to the software the processes that don't require the human touch and focus planners' attention on building relationships with the partners and clients.
Automations, like task reminder emails and room inventory management, are the life-savers for group trip planners and their assistants.
Trip CRM (Customer Relationships Management) platform means onboarding clients is becoming an automated process: clients can access their personalized travel portal, pay for the booking, upload travel documents, purchase insurance and share personal information securely from their phone. The group travel software, like YouLi, will automatically send out confirmation emails to both, the guest, and the planner. It will also notify the guest of the upcoming payment or task due.
Connect Existing Software - No Platform Does it All
If you haven't of Zapier yet, look into it. This software allows you to integrate the web applications you already use and automate workflows.
For example, if you use Google Form to collect travelers' data, you can connect it to your marketing email funnel, like Mailchimp or Active Campaign, to automatically copy that information and activate the nurturing email sequence. The same is valid for connecting your payments, registration forms, and even accounting data.
YouLi travel management software provides open API, so you can easily integrate your existing processes without investing in a custom solution that does it all.
Choose Booking Software that works with Multiple Gateways
There are several criteria you can not miss when choosing the best group travel software:
- Define your key business challenges and find the software that solves those first. For example, YouLi platform allows you to bring the external payment gateway and your own website
- Look over past software releases and future roadmap. Platforms that publish regular software releases are much more likely to serve your business well in the long run as they continuously improve, find new solutions, and add features you will be benefiting from. New releases should be published every 2-4 weeks.
- Community and support. It is extremely important what kind of support you can get from the software provider if the feature is unclear or you discover a bug. The best practice is to join the community of users who freely share tips and knowledge about the product. Join the YouLi travel professional community for more insights about the product.