Routehappy by ATPCO has announced a new partnership with Fareportal to introduce Universal Product Attribute (UPA) rich-content.
A statement says that the integration is "a first for a consumer travel brand".
Customers on Fareportal's CheapOair.com and OneTravel.com websites will now be able to take a peak at the cabin they’ve selected from a seat map of the plane, including product features and an image of the seat, before booking.
The Routehappy Hub content management solution will be able to target seat images across airline sub-fleets, cabins and specific seat locations so that consumers get accurate UPAs for the flight they are considering. The UPA content will first be available for 19 of Fareportal’s airline partners.
tnooz spoke with Seth Anagnostis, director for business development at Routehappy, to learn more about this project to tie-in UPAs directly to the customer’s personal seat choice.
“Content varies [in terms of] where different distributors choose to put it in the booking flow. Some do it earlier and some choose to do it later, for their own strategic reasons. In Fareportal's case, they've really rolled out an industry-leading solution, when it comes to being able to show the customer a real map of the airplane at the end of the booking flow. It's a differentiator for them. A lot of other OTAs don't have that.“They [Fareportal] always intended to show some kind of a visual on that page but we provided them with the ability to source that from one place rather than have to do it manually with dozens of different airlines. You give them the ability to get all ads in one place. Our pride in everything that we do is that we have the ability to give that to them on a more targeted basis. They had the skeleton in place, and then we were able to work together to figure out how to make it easier for them and more robust for the customer.“From our perspective, it was trying to enhance that capability and use that as a way to improve their success. It increases the likelihood that you will purchase the ancillary product if you are better able to visualize it. They had already built out something so robust that they wanted to really use our content to take that to the next level.”
Routehappy’s content team in New York works on an on-going basis to ensure that product details are up-to-date and even suggests when the airline may want to collect new rich content for the fleet. This becomes particularly useful for airlines with large fleets and complex sub-fleet configurations. Anagostis gives us the example of United, which is among the airlines featured on Fareportal with the new UPA-enhanced seat maps.
“United has such a wide variety of sub-fleets with different products on them and we're all particularly happy with how that integration is working because United's seats are quite different, depending on the product. By working on that, it was a way for us to show the difference, compared to an airline that maybe only has a couple of sub-fleets with product that looks similar.”
Routehappy is also extending the range of content available for greater merchandising capabilities. For example, including video, 360-degree cabin tours or hyper-targetted images that reflect the time of day for the flight. The company hopes to inspire airlines to explore new rich-content applications on their direct and indirect sales channels. Routehappy maintains a list of use cases on its website that airlines can explore to get ideas.
“Since the acquisition by ATPCO, one of our roles in the industry is not to just fulfill the integration of the individual distributors that we are signing as customers, but also to make sure that the industry is inspired and is able to think of ways to use rich content that they hadn't previously. I think this is one of the great examples of that."[Currently] this is seat selection and seat map, but over time it could very easily be used for a cabin upgrade on installations where you select economy and they will show you what the seats and what the product would look like in premium economy."So the more use cases that we have around that, the more inspired that airlines and the industry at large are to really think through how rich content can be used, in the myriad ways that it can be used.”