In all types of industries worldwide, handling customer data safely is of utmost priority. After all, with such information, businesses can easily make data-driven decisions as well. In fact, many famous travel organizations are already accessing their database to create personalized ads and products. But before using this data as an asset, it’s important that we learn about how to handle customer database in travel agency.
Even in today’s interconnected world, a cybersecurity team isn’t a mandatory requirement for any travel agency. Moreover, proper handling of such databases is crucial to ensure that your company doesn’t fall for any data breach issues. As a result, most organizations rely on encrypted networks and cloud servers to keep their customer data secured. But, what other possible ways are there to manage a customer database in travel agency? Let’s have a look at some of them:
Secured Network and Data Servers
With an encrypted and secured network, any travel company can make sure that their data is safe from any third-party interception. Undoubtedly, the amount of data travel agencies can carry is quite massive. And sometimes, despite putting in passwords or two-factor authentication, hackers can still find access. Hence, first and foremost, make sure that all the data on your website is SSL encrypted and it follows HTTPS protocol as well.
Similarly, having a virtual private network (VPN) can also secure your customer database in travel agency. With such VPNs, organizations can hide their IP addresses and encrypt their entire servers. On the other hand, choosing a reputed CRM system and training your employees in customer-data protection can keep your customer database safe.
Regularly Back Up Your Data
In most business industries, the risk of losing customer data is usually quite high due to regular breaches. As a result, having regular data backups and a strategic recovery plan is essential for any travel company. While building such recovery plans to secure your customer database in travel agency, you must have answers to questions like:
- What’s the maximum data backup budget that can be invested?
- How will you store and maintain your backup datasets?
- And, what type of backup plan will fit right with your agency?
Once you have found the answer to all such questions, it’ll be much easier for you to create a recovery plan. Apart from regular data backups, make sure to test your backup systems and check if everything is functioning properly.
In any travel agency, handling invoices is usually a headache due to various included parameters. For instance, every company has to include various charges such as ticket booking fees, hotel booking fees, transportation fees, convenience fees, additional charges, etc. With so many factors involved, any type of miscalculation in the final invoice is quite common. However, with the help of the right tools and software, such calculation mistakes can be avoided easily.
Such platforms and application not only allow you to automate the process but also ensures that you can download invoices anytime. For any accounting needs in the future, organizations can access them easily and ensure the safety of their customer database in travel agency.
Securing the Online Payment Processes
As a modern travel agency, your business is likely using various online payment methods for customer convenience. While it’s necessary to offer a hassle-free payment experience, it’s equally important to have only secured online payment gateways. After all, while paying for such charges, your customers are entering their personal as well as financial details.
To keep such things safe while handling customer database in travel agency, it’s recommended to partner with a third-party payment processor. In such a case, you will not have to worry about having a secured payment environment.
However, if you are planning to use your payment processor, then make sure all the data is encrypted with SSL and TLS protocols. Further, you can also match your customers’ IP addresses to make sure that the recent transaction isn’t fraudulent activity.
Investing in Customer Database Software
In case your travel agency is still using spreadsheets for keeping the records of customers, then it’s time to invest in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Tool. Famous CRM tools not only offer secured databases but also offer detailed insights. By having such insights, any travel agency can work on the area that requires improvement. Moreover, such tools can also track your customer’s interactions and allow you to use them for further growth.
With such CRMs, not only your data is safely placed in one place but also helps in scaling your business. Further, you can get detailed insights and a unified view of such customer database in travel agency. Lastly, many other CRMs allow the user to customize or sort data as per their needs and get only accurate information.
Collecting Data Ethically
Before learning about handling customer database in travel agency, it’s important to make sure you’re collecting data ethically. In the past few years, many major companies have faced backlash due to selling customer data to other organizations.
For any industry, customer trust is one of the biggest components to building long-term relationships and generating leads. Hence, it becomes crucial for your travel agency to not only collect data in the right ways but also ensure the safety of the customer database in travel agency.
To collect customer data in non-ethical ways, every travel agency can rely on simple and direct surveys. Moreover, if you are collecting data on your website visitors, then make sure to showcase your privacy policies on the website. Once you have made sure that there’s enough transparency, it will become much easier for your customers to trust your services.
Offer Essential Training to your Employees
Travel industry has always been the biggest victim of fraudulent activities such as phishing, malware, ransomware, etc. However, such data breaches can also arise from the company’s internal network. As a result, it becomes necessary for travel agencies to offer essential training to their employees and educate them about handling customer database in travel agency.
Apart from this, all employees should be taught about keeping their important details such as usernames and passwords entirely safe. And as an employer, it becomes your responsibility to ensure that every employee is following these guidelines strictly.
Maintain Clean Payment Cycles
As a travel agency, it’s quite common that you offer additional services by partnering with some other companies. In such cases, it’s important to maintain clean payment cycles with genuine records and bills. For instance, a travel agency can partner with another organization that offers car rental services. Here, ideally, the travel agency should fix a specific date of the month to clear all the dues and keep the records updated.
With such clean payment cycles, you can improve your agency’s relationship with other businesses. Moreover, it allows you to focus on getting more customers rather than spending your time managing old accounts and records.
Summarizing on Customer Database in Travel Agency
All in all, it’s safe to say that customer data is one of the most crucial responsibilities of any business. And, travel agencies usually have to handle such data sets on a much larger scale. Regardless of your company size, it’s necessary to follow the best practices for handling customer database in travel agency.
Many popular CRM tools can ease your work by automating various processes and offering secured networks. At the same time, every travel company must educate their employees about data privacy and security. And during this process, make sure you are always collecting data in ethical and professional ways only.
Remember, that all such data are your responsibility. And when such information is handled well, it can lead your business to new heights of success. So, make sure to keep such data safe and let your customers know that their information is in safe hands.
Platforms such as Pathfndr help you to simplify your business operations and deal with large sets of data easily. You can also take advantage of the various tools offered by pathfndr including user management, automated invoices, order management, vouchers, and more.