The mobile phone is probably not the first device that comes to mind when researching a holiday destination.
The screen size is small, there's less likelihood of there being a wifi connection and frame of mind while on the go might also be less than conducive to destination shopping.
That said, it's interesting to look at research from a Travel 2.0 report on how travellers are engaging with destination via mobile based on Google analytics data on how various tourism organisation websites do for mobile traffic.
First, a few statistics:
- 20% of destination marketing organisation website traffic comes from mobile, that compares with almost 11% in late 2011
- 42% of travellers who use a smartphone to access a DMO site are looking for things to do in destination, 34% event information, 11% contact information and 5% accommodation
- Nearly 70% of all mobile traffic to DMO sites comes from iOS devices
When you look at traveller behaviour via mobile on tourism organisation sites, the story seems fairly consistent with overall trends for mobile and travel.
For example, travellers on mobile phones are looking for what is happening now (within just over a day) while it it less time-sensitive for tablet users (more than 14 days).
They also plan about 1.7 days in advance on a phone compared to about 20 days in advance on a tablet and the majority of mobile visits to destination sites come from the destination itself.
They spend more time and look at more pages on a tablet, 2.45 minutes compared with 1.48 minutes, and are also looking at more generic content while via phone usage is, as you might expect, more around instant content such as events.
This is supported by the top search phrases in mobile search - things to do in ... and events in ... from phones compared to destination name and state followed by destination name from tablets.
It's hard to assess the impact of optimised mobile destination sites on users because 61% say they move on quickly if they don't find what they're looking for. However, if the information is relevant visit duration is increased by 78% for optimised sites.
The report also says DMOs can expect at least a 90% increase in mobile traffic this year and a 180% increase in tablet traffic.
The research is based on Google Analytics data for website visits from mobile devices for 42 tourism organisations.
NB: Woman on mobile image via Shutterstock