The growth and evolution of ecommerce has revolutionized booking and even made it even more faster and convenient as more and more Nigerians get online via their mobile phones to plan their trips, travel operators are hard-pressed to provide a seamless mobile booking experience.
With 61% of internet users accessing through mobile devices, Nigeria’s travel industry has become an increasingly blossoming ecommerce sector said Marek Zmyslowski, Managing Director of Jovago.com who made a presentation on the role and relevance of mobile and online in developing the travel sector at the on-going Mobile West Africa 2014 event.
“Travel is the largest and fastest growing ecommerce industry; anyone traveling abroad or even interstate first searches on Google to find out about Hotels,” said Zymyslowski adding that travel was the first engine of the e-commerce revolution.
“For many people, searching and buying travel online for great value fares was their first experience of e-commerce. With the increase in ‘human-shaped’ shopping, even more people are embracing the onliane travel sector,” he added.
With over 3000 local listings in Africa, Jovago is competing players like StayNow, SafariNow, SleepOut, Agoda and Booking.com which Marek says is not an issue as they have a more local-based focus as it results in significant growth and customer satisfaction over a short period of time.
Online travel demand is expanding rapidly at a 60% annual growth rate, and will continue to increase rapidly in the foreseeable future. Travel ecommerce is an increasingly booming industry especially in the sub Saharan Africa. In what many described as an insightful presentation. Sub-Saharan Africa receives 5% of all global travellers. In East Africa, tourism accounts for over 6% of GDP and 3% for Nigeria.
Last year alone, the number of search queries for Hotels and Tourism has grown astronomically, reinforcing the debate that travel ecommerce is booming at a fast-growing rate and as Zmyslowski says “Mobile access to e-commerce websites and companies alike will only continue to grow.”