Qunar has positioned itself for its entry in the O2O segment after making its biggest investment yet in tour operator Traveling Bestone last year to build its 020 presence on the strength of the latter’s 4,000-strong agency base.
Traveling Bestone’s recent announcement of launching a joint O2O flagship store with Qunar, to be uploaded on the Qunar app, marks the start of synergistic customer services between the two companies resulting from last year’s partnership deal.
Traveling Bestone’s CEO Li Zhang said: “Travel businesses have been vying to shift to the O2O model mainly because the O2O model provides a contextualized experience. Yet many of them have lost sight of how to reconstruct an organic chain and this has stymied their transition.”
For example, many traditional tour operators added e-commerce platforms based on their offline channels in the past two years, but the results were unimpressive.
This is because they have failed to properly match up offline and online in an O2O framework. Whereas OTAs have already built a strong pull for users, traditional tour operators can hardly match them by simply adding an online portal without restructuring or shortening their business chains.
Even before Qunar and Traveling Bestone have fired up their tie-up completely, they have started to tackle the new mode of information communication needed in the O2O segment. Jointly setting up an all-new flagship store and display platform helps enhance their visibility among users with their joint brand power and replace the complicated way of transforming channels.
This move will serve as a major catalyst for Traveling Bestone’s offline tour agencies.
The agencies that already have strong marketing capacity can take on the sales and service functions while the others can focus on refining service. Leveraging the reputation of Traveling Bestone and Qunar to bring in traffic, service quality for the O2O model is guaranteed to drive repeat business.(Translation by David)