Rethinking Accommodation & Tours

A fresh Accomodation section for Flight Centre

Flight Centre was about to grow its Accommodation & Tours catalogue from 3000 to 300,000 products, so we kicked off a project to improve the UX & customer journey first.

The project started by engaging key stakeholders throughout the business; representatives from marketing, product, design, UX, development & content, were included in the earliest discussions about how to tackle this massive overhaul of one of our most neglected sections.


Defining the problem

As a UX & Design team, we knew the accomodation & tours section were not only a complete eye-sore, but if they were given just a little bit of care, they could start to reach their huge potential.

It’s hard to get a budget to ‘improve everything for the sake of improvement’, so we needed to define some concrete problems that were worth solving, and clear success metrics to ensure we had hit the mark.

We started by analysing the performance of the current pages, and found more than just visual shortcomings. The content of the product pages was unorganised & most of the useful data for customers to make purchase decisions was incomplete or missing.

Discovering that there was an 80% bounce rate on mobile devices was just one of these. With mobile traffic making up approx 70% of all traffic on the Flight Centre website, finding such huge issues with the mobile accomodation section gave us just the beach head we needed to redesign the whole section.

This is what we were starting with:




Diving into our customers wants & needs

The next step was for us to discover more about what our customers are looking for in an Accommodation website:

  • What features do they find helpful?
  • What influences their decisions to buy now vs later
  • What types of products do they like researching, and how can we surface these better?

We ran a number of focus groups centred around how people search, dream, compare & buy accommodation online.


What we discovered:

40 %
Had a destination already in mind

of customers had a destination already in mind, and wanted to check out their travel options.

15 %
Looking for inspiration

Customers hadn’t committed to one destination yet, and were on the site to be inspired

45 %
Looking for travel style

Customers didn’t have a destination in mind, but knew what 'style' of holiday they wanted.

The majority of customers in focus groups were less interested in hotel stays, and wanted to know how they could 'live like a local', or access more authentic experiences.

Designing & prototyping a solution

Armed with solid GoogleAnalytics, VWO & heatmap data along with recent focus group feedback, we ran a number of collaborative design & wireframing workshops. The workshop formats started with a presentation of the key problems customers found around the accommodation section, along with the additional data & customer research to fill in the gaps.

As a result, we decided to scope our new Accommodation and Tours sections around not only finding the best value hotel deals, but to include sections based around more explorative search styles.

Along with prototyping new data structures and page templates, we were also exploring a new ways to tackle the search experience, moving away from static fields like “Destination”, “Check in / Check out”, and taking a step towards using experience types “Family friendly”, “Authentic Stays”, “River Cruising” to increase engagement.

A sneak peek of the new experience ...

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