From take off to landing page: optimisation drives commercial value at easyJet

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Personalising and testing the online customer experience can have lasting effects on customer engagement, conversion funnels and revenue. Moreover, in the competitive online travel sector, the effective marriage of a data-rich environment and powerful customer experience optimisation tools is helping travel companies provide customers with more personalised online journeys.

An impressive ascent

easyJet is the UK’s largest airline. Founded in 1995 with a call centre operation and just two routes, it now boasts over 200 aircraft travelling over 600 routes across 30 countries – and transports more than 60 million passengers a year. Its website, easyjet.com, was launched in 1997 and has since become the company’s biggest sales channel by far. easyJet is now the world’s third most searched-for airline, with its site enjoying over 370 million visits in 2012.

easyJet’s ethos is characterised by a ruthless focus on cost control and a commercial strategy - underpinned by a fundamental belief that small changes can make a huge difference to profitability. This is exemplified by its partnership with Maxymiser, the global experts in testing, personalisation and cross-channel optimisation, with whom it has developed an ongoing customer experience optimisation (CXO) strategy to improve customer engagement and increase sales conversion.

Taking off

easyJet’s partnership with Maxymiser began in September 2010 and set out to help the company move away from making adhoc design changes and, instead, develop its site based on quantitative customer data and real-world insights.

“Our goal is to make the customer experience better – and this, in turn, can only benefit our commercial performance,” says James Millett, Head of Digital at easyJet. “Optimisation is key. Our strategy is to test relentlessly – we know that small changes can make a big difference. We are using the digital channel to drive incremental revenue through the introduction of new products and services. Moreover, Maxymiser is enabling us to use data to understand our customers and deliver a personalised and relevant user experience.”

In-flight service

easyJet has used Maxymiser’s personalisation and targeting tool to ensure that the focus to be personal and relevant is reflected throughout the booking funnel. At present, the airline has conducted more than 70 tests on the sales funnel alone. “We’ve spread our campaigns to track business goals across the whole funnel – and combined testing to ensure that our messaging is intelligent and clear for customers,” says James.

Beyond this, easyJet has conducted a number of campaigns designed to improve commercial performance. For example, one campaign looked at rationalising the most effective method of launching their allocated seating initiative, with the clear aim being to increase the number or people buying a seat through the booking funnel. “This campaign focused on the creative design of the allocated seating banner,” says James. “We had more than 80 variants – dividing the banner into different titles, bullets, calls to action and imagery.”

The long-haul

The partnership with Maxymiser is really helping easyJet to meet its wider objective of driving sustainable and incremental growth. “Testing is a core part of what we do, and it’s a core part of the easyJet culture. Digital is playing a critical role in our marketing and brand strategy - and Maxymiser is really supporting us on that journey.”

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