Choice is the buzzword in travel merchandising. Give travellers choice of where to sit on the plane, whether to check a bag, how much flexibility they have to change their flight, and so on. But, with choice has come considerable new complexity.
Perhaps rather than presenting the menu of choices in a generic way for all – annoying basically everyone with too much choice, with too cumbersome a purchase process, with new levels of anxiety and stress (!) – the presentation of choice needs to be more personalised. This is not personalised pricing; it is personalised choice!
the presentation of choice needs to be more personalised
There are many possible approaches to ‘personalised presentation of choice’. In a sense, it is easier than the conventional vision of personalisation since it doesn’t actually require selection of one best alternative. In fact, choosing one alternative runs counter to best practices in e-merchandising. Presenting one alternative, even if it is targeted to the individual traveller needs, takes control back from the customer. Offering multiple alternatives, on the other hand, gives even more control to the customer than too many choices since it can be both targeted (displaying the ‘right’ alternatives for any individual customer) and transparent (fewer choices, each with clear differences and benefits).
There are, nevertheless, many different ways to pare down the options and display less ‘choice’.
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