Agents who have the ability to sell a wide range of product types including Cruise, River Cruise, Luxury, Coach Tours, South Pacific, Australia, Asia and Africa have a much higher likelihood to be successful in the home based environment, according to the 3rd annual National Travel Agent Survey.
These agents have the ability to earn up to 50 per cent more than their call centre or store front agency counterparts once they go home based. Which makes sense, given that these products generally have a higher price tag.
The findings suggest that if you are currently in an office, call centre or store front and you have a diverse product and destination expertise, you will make a lot more money if you go home based!
And the study showed that of all types of agents – store front, call centre, corporate and home based – the home based agents showed considerably more expertise across many product types than any of the other agents surveyed.
Here’s what the survey found among full time, home based agents when it comes to their percentage of sales of non-mainstream product types:
- Groups - 7.0%
- Ocean Cruise - 8.9%
- Coach Tour 5.4%
- Weddings - 3.4%
- River Cruise - 4.8%
- European Package / Tour - 6.6%
- Sun and Beach - 14.5%
Some of the data also suggests that some home based agents are in an older age bracket and have more years of experience than the non-home based agents and this may explain that they have gathered a broader product expertise over the years in more diverse products beyond such mainstream products as Sun, Beach, Air only and car rental.
Home based agents selling more long haul
Home based agents reported sales to the lucrative but less traditional destinations such as:
- Australia and New Zealand - 4.0%
- South America - 4.0%
- Asia - 3.4%
Home based agents also scored themselves high in their confidence and expertise in selling higher margin destinations:
- Luxury - 28.6% Said they either 'Rocked' or were 'An All Star'
- River Cruise - 39.7% Said they either 'Rocked' or were 'An All Star'
- Europe - 37.4 % said their either 'Rocked' or were 'An All Star'
Happiness is selling what you want
Product expertise and diversity was mentioned as a key component in response to questions about what makes them happy and successful home based agents. The ability to sell whatever they want, rather than what their agency wants them to sell, was also a positive factor about being home based.
The 3rd annual National Travel Agent Survey, an independent nationwide survey of close to 700 Canadian travel agents, was expanded for the first time to include non-hosted agents on commission and/or salary with close to 700 travel agents from all across Canada taking part, representing a wide variety of chains, consortiums, host agencies, call centers and independents.
The Travel Agent Next Door has access to the results of the survey and will be sharing it with industry partners and suppliers in the coming weeks, as well as releasing interesting findings from the survey in its marketing and communications over the next few months.