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Spring Cleaning: 11 Ways To Clean Up Your Web Presence

Next week, we’ll officially say goodbye to winter with the arrival of the Spring Equinox. To get you in the spirit, we’ve put together a digital spring cleaning list. From your website to your confirmation emails, we promise you’ll get you that deep-clean feeling by the end. Let’s get started:

Website

green-https-lock

1. Add SSL certification to your site. If your site doesn’t already have the green HTTPS lock, it’s time to make the switch. Not only are consumers learning to look for the lock, but Google Chrome has started marking non-SSL sites (HTTP only) that collect passwords or credit cards as non-secure.

2. Check your Call-to-Actions. Make sure your ‘Book Now’ button is visible from the homepage of your website. You should always have at least one CTA above-the-fold (visible without scrolling), typically in the header or center of the page.

Make sure it’s a button, not just a line of text, and that it is designed with some visual contrast.

Booking Form

booking-form

3. Evaluate your mandatory custom fields. When it comes to the checkout, the rule of thumb is keep it simple. Revisit your booking form and see if there are any required forms that you can cut out. Remember, the true purpose of the checkout is to convert, not to collect information for marketing.

4. Reduce your booking cutoff times. The beautiful thing about real-time availability is that you can capture those seriously last-minute bookings (that happen all the time).

If you offer any tours or rentals that have the flexibility to accept walk-ups, make sure your calendar allows those bookings to come through. This allows the customer to both check and book last-minute availability, where seeing a ‘Call to Book’ option might sway them the other way.

5. Consolidate dynamic pricing. If you’re currently offering dynamic pricing options for weekdays, weekends or groups, consider establishing a uniform price for your activities. Dynamic pricing can affect abandon rates, as it prompts the customer to re-evaluate their decision in an effort to get a better price.

Emails

6. Clean up your email subscriber lists. You’ve been collecting emails from customers past (and future!), but when’s the last time you actually looked those over? In just a few minutes, you can audit the subscriber list in your preferred email marketing platform for inactive email addresses or typos.

If you are a FareHarbor client and don’t use an email marketing service, you can check your email marketing list by pulling a Contacts report from your Dashboard.

7. Review your confirmation, reminder and follow-up emails. Haven’t checked these in a while? Now is a good time to review them for any outdated information, broken links or opportunities to improve.
Update confirmation emails in FareHarbor >

Social Media

social media edits

8. Update your descriptions and header images. This is all about fresh content. If you haven’t updated your pages lately, take a minute to swap in your latest photography or highlight that new 2017 offering.

FareHarbor Backend

9. Try a new Bookings view. Even if you’ve already customized your Bookings calendar, you may want to try out the new Grid view, which lets you organize and group information exactly how you want it, and even choose the number of days you see at a time.

10. Add new seasonal employees. Gear up for your spring season by adding new users and removing old ones.

11. Perfect your Manifest. Remove unused columns, add a summary row, or clean up your custom manifests to ensure you’re getting exactly what you need. Read all about these options and more on our help page.

Best Practices For Managing Online Reviews

Last week, the Phocuswright report taught us that 57% of tour and activity operators consider online reviews to be their most effective marketing source. We’ll be the first to say – we’re not surprised. The landscape of travel marketing has dramatically shifted. Today the customer journey almost always starts with an internet search. While your website, photos, videos and social media accounts are all on the radar of potential customers, nothing forms an opinion like an online review.

In fact, more than 90% of consumers depend on online, local reviews to help form their decision about a business. Much like getting a recommendation from a friend or co-worker, potential customers trust online reviews to provide an honest, first-hand account of your tour or activity. Their end goal – feeling secure that your business brings the value and experience they’re looking for. In other words, reviews are just as important to the customer as they are to your business.

Here’s a few simple actions you can take to make sure both you and your customers get the most out of them.

1. Respond to every review, positive or negative.

When customers share their experience via an online review it serves two purposes; to inform others customers and to communicate with the business owner. In not responding, you’re missing out on both a valuable touch point and an opportunity to lead the conversation.

Whether the review brings praise or criticism, it’s direct feedback from your customers – and that’s always a powerful tool for improving your business. Show them you’re listening by crafting a personalized response that touches on each individual point made in the review, rather than sending a canned message.

If you encounter a negative review, respond objectively. Be kind, professional and accepting of their perspective. The worst thing you can do is respond in a way that will discourage potential customers from wanting to do business with you. Yes, negative reviews are difficult and can be hurtful to a business, but they’re also an opportunity to improve.

When the review warrants more than your acknowledgement, try offering a small discount as an invitation for a better experience. This can be as simple as, “We apologize for your poor experience, that’s uncommon for us to hear. We’d love to make it up to you with 20% off your next booking. Please contact us privately for specific details.”

Take the same approach for positive reviews. Use the feedback to figure out what’s working. It’s just as important to know what you’re doing right as it is to know what you can improve on.

Create a document where you log both positive and negative feedback coming in from reviews. When it comes time to build a new marketing plan, update website copy or train new employees, you’ll have a clear list of customer-perceived strengths and weaknesses, suggestions and improvements.

2. Set aside time to manage reviews. Every. Single. Day.

To keep review sites from becoming a one-way conversation, you need to make yourself available. Let people know that they can rely on a timely response from you by making time to manage reviews, every single day.

Remember that almost every customer searching for your business will first look to online reviews. This is a valuable first impression. In terms of establishing trust and credibility, your odds go way up when they see that you’re involved in the reputation of your business and that you care about your customers’ opinions. Plus, when you’re hit with the occasional negative review, you’ll have the chance to respond and repair any damage before it even starts.

Many review sites give the option of sending email notifications when a new review comes in. Enabling notifications makes it that much easier to make sure you never miss a review, no matter how many review sites you use.

3. Follow-up every tour with a review request.

From adding review widgets to your website to passing out “Review Us!” stickers or business cards, there’s a way to turn almost any customer interaction into a review request. But we find that the most effective ways to encourage reviews are also some of the most simple.

As a general rule, the more often you can add a personal touch to your tour or activity, the better. This makes the classic in-person request hard to beat. It’s a natural sign-off and easy to work into your final goodbye. Plus, it’s personal enough that the customer will be more likely to log-on and leave a review.

No matter what approach you decide is right for your business, we suggest that you always send a follow-up email requesting customer feedback on your preferred review site. This email should be straightforward with a direct call-to-action. You can also use this email to link to your social media pages, to offer a return discount or to simply say thank you.

Send your follow-up email a few days after the customer’s tour to maximize engagement. You’ll already have an edge as the customer will be on their desktop or device when they open the email, making their five-star review just a few clicks away.

As a FareHarbor client, this can all be done directly through your Dashboard. You can automate custom follow-up emails to be sent out directly after the tour or even a few days later.

If TripAdvisor is your top performing review site, we suggest adding TripAdvisor Review Express to your lineup as well. Review Express is another email automation tool that sends a review request directly from TripAdvisor.


Of course, your five-star tours mostly speak for themselves. These tips are just here to help you make the most of the awesome reviews you’re already receiving.

5 Statistics That Are Defining The Tour And Activity Industry

Back in November, Phocuswright, the travel industry’s leading research firm, conducted an in-depth survey covering key trends of the tours & activity industry. We’ve been anxiously awaiting their analysis, as Phocuswright is the global authority when it comes to travel industry research. In fact, their work has been covered in major news outlets like Forbes, CNN and The New York Times. And now, they’re giving us a comprehensive look at the industry we love the most.

As many of you donated your time to helping Phocuswright get the data right (you’re the best!), we wanted to share a few can’t-miss-highlights from the report:

  • Online tour & attraction gross bookings will more than double from 2015 to 2020, growing from 11% in 2016 to 21% in 2020.

Key takeaway: We love this! Customers are using desktops and mobile devices to research and book more than ever. So what can you do to capture these bookings? Make sure you’re prepared by adding SSL to your site, optimizing for both desktop and mobile and having a conversion-minded checkout flow.

  • Travel activities account for 9% of global travel revenue, are the third-largest travel segment and are growing faster than the total travel market.

Key takeaway: The shift from poolside margaritas to surfing, snorkeling and banana-boating your way through vacation is real. Travelers are seeking experiential travel – active adventures, educational tours and adrenaline-packed experiences are now an essential part of the getaway. Play into this by building up the full experience of your tour or activity by sharing beautiful Instagram posts, adding customer stories to your Facebook page, and interacting with customers on Twitter.

  • 57% of businesses consider traveler review websites as their most effective marketing channel.

Key takeaway: It’s hard to dispute this one. Reviews matter. In fact, 92% of consumers read online reviews. The good news is that an awesome tour and great customer service usually do the trick. If you’re looking for a little more advice, check out our interview with TripAdvisor’s 2015, #2 tour in the country, Real New York Tours. Or, if you’re with the 40% of tour operators that find SEM (search engine marketing) to be a highly effective marketing channel, take a minute to read over these essential AdWords tips.

  • In the US, an average of 40% of customers are domestic travelers, 31% are international travelers and 28% are local residents.

Key takeaway: When it comes to local travelers, US-based tour operators receive an average of about 20% more traffic than the rest of the world. Put that data to work by shifting some of your marketing focus to people looking to explore their own backyard. Register with local business directories, add neighborhood discounts to your site and target locals with digital ad spend and copy.

  • Only 13% of reservations from distribution partners are made via real-time connectivity.

Key takeaway: If you’re already partnering with FareHarbor, you should love this statistic – it means you’re ahead of the curve. With FareHarbor Connect, you’re already able to accept real-time bookings from our network of third-party distributors. Bookings from Viator and Expedia Local Expert flow directly into your Dashboard, no manual work needed. (And if you’re not already taking full advantage of our partner network, just get in touch.)


Although we’ve only covered a fraction of the data covered by the Phocuswright report, it’s clear that the future of tours & activities is bright. Of course, we’ve always believed that, but we’re excited to finally have trusted data to prove it.

Now that we have had an inside look at the industry – past, present and future – let’s put the data to work.

All data sourced from Phocuswright’s Global Travel Activities 2014-2020: Tours & Attractions Come of Age

Tour and Activity Businesses: Make 2017 Your Best Year Yet

The New Year is officially in full swing, meaning there’s no better time to put your 2017 goals into action. To help you decide exactly what those goals should be, we asked a few people from our team to weigh in on how business owners can ensure this year is one of their strongest years yet. Here’s what they came up with.

Get your site the green HTTPS lock.

green lock Especially on websites where a transaction is being made, customers are learning to look for the green HTTPS lock at the top of their browser. This lock is enabled by a form of security technology called SSL (Secure Sockets Layer). While the FareHarbor booking process is 100% secure without the addition of SSL to your site, it acts as a visual indicator that your business is a trusted online merchant.

On top of building trust, adding SSL to your site can help boost your search engine optimization efforts. Much like your customers, Google has learned to trust sites that have added SSL and tends to rank them more highly.

Is your site missing the green lock? Adding SSL to your website is a simple process that can be easily be done with the help of your web developer or through your hosting management. If you are a FareHarbor client, you can read up on website security and adding SSL here.

Collect more reviews.

review express

Research shows that 92% of consumers read online reviews, and 90% say their buying decisions are influenced by what they read. By these numbers, nearly your entire online customer base depends on reviews of your business to help them decide to book.

Ready for the best part? Review sites are free for your business and the customer. That’s an incredibly powerful marketing tool that can increase site traffic and sales with nothing more than a little elbow grease. While offering an epic tour and remarkable customer service is always the best way to encourage reviews, there’s also a few tricks to the trade.

Here at FareHarbor, our favorite way to collect reviews is by connecting to TripAdvisor Automated Review Express. Once you’ve connected your business to the program, your customers will receive an email at the conclusion of their activity that comes directly from TripAdvisor. The automated email will encourage customers to leave a review about their experience – and it’s quite good at getting results.

As a FareHarbor client, adding Automated Review Express couldn’t be easier. You can simply email us at support@fareharbor.com, and we’ll take care of the process for you. Otherwise, you can sign your business up for the program via TripAdvisor.


If you choose not to use this service, we still suggest sending a follow-up email that encourages customers to review their recent experience. This can be done manually, through an email automation service, or through your FareHarbor Dashboard.

Get organized.

custom calendars fareharbor

Every interaction with your customer should be considered a valuable touchpoint on their end-to-end journey. So while checking-in guests or fielding questions about meeting locations may seem like a routine process to you, it’s much more than that to the customer.

In fact, 84% of customers report getting frustrated when their guide or agent doesn’t have the necessary information. And 13% of those frustrated guests claim to tell 15 or more people when they’re unhappy, while 72% will tell 6 or more people when the experience was positive.

So the question is, how to get organized? For FareHarbor clients, we suggest setting up custom calendars and manifests to ensure that the information you need is quickly and easily accessible.

With a custom calendar, you can save a set of filters and display options to create a Bookings view personalized for you. This allows you to drill down by activity, get a quick view of all tours with available seats, or see tours that a certain staff member is assigned to. Spend less time searching through bookings and more time focusing on your customers.

Custom manifests work in a similar way, allowing you to add columns, filter information, and summarize data to create a daily snapshot of your activities. With a custom manifest, you can quickly see which guests have not been checked-in or who still have a balance due, check email statuses, create a summary of custom field answers, and much more.


Use one or both tools to ensure that all the details that matter are just one click away.

Bottom line

All of these tips are designed to improve a different piece of the customer journey. Whether it’s the first impression or the last, they all present an opportunity to make the experience great. Put them into effect, and watch customer satisfaction and revenue rise.


PBN’s Best Workplaces: #1 in Small Business

Last night, our Hawaii office joined Pacific Business News for their annual ‘Hawaii’s Best Workplaces’ award ceremony. The food and company made it a five-star event early on, but the highlight of our night came when FareHarbor was awarded the #1 Best Workplace in the Small Business category.

best workplaces 2

The award was granted based on employee surveys and a review of office culture. Our close knit team was a natural fit, as they’re experts when it comes to balancing hard work and a good time. Hours of head-down productivity are always paired with sunset beers, ‘family’ dinners or midday ocean swims. Of course, being in tourism also helps, as its one of Hawaii’s most vibrant industries, and we get to work with incredible people and businesses on the daily.

“Hawaii is our headquarters, our home and where we got our start, and the hundreds of tour operators we serve in this market have become our staunchest supporters and our friends. I’m very proud of what our Honolulu office has accomplished and I’m delighted to see our business, our employees and their work ethic recognized by this important award.”

-Lawrence

We’re incredibly proud of our Oahu team for creating an culture of dedication, growth and best of all, family. Now to celebrate!

A special thanks to our teammates for making FareHarbor all that it is. And also to Pacific Business News for the fantastic event and great honor.

50 Miles of #DWIFT

It’s no secret that we’re all about the #DWIFT (Do Whatever It Takes) at FareHarbor. In fact, it’s become more than just an acronym for our team – it’s something of a lifestyle.

So naturally, when Davis Cutter, one of our awesome Account Executives in the Needham office, decided to run a 50-mile race and come in first place? We couldn’t help but brag a little. Here’s the inspirational story from the man himself:


“Why?!” It’s the main question I’m asked when I tell people that I willingly signed up to suffer. Admittedly, it’s a fair question. There’s a million reasons to not run 50 miles, and I think about them everyday. You can probably guess the usual suspects: the time, the heat, the cold, the sheer distance, social sacrifices, solitude, discomfort, and work/training balance. Even the simple prospect of defeat is daunting enough to say, “maybe next time.” Yet, in the end, they’re all merely excuses – just reasons never to toe that starting line.

So, let’s not dwell on the reasons one can’t or shouldn’t. Instead, let me tell you why I did.

There comes a moment in every endurance race that looks something like this: My hands are on my knees, chin to my chest, and I’m exhaling in exhaustion, frustration, and fatigue. No matter where my mind wanders—to the beach or even my desk at work—I always return as the same, stagnant puddle. Something grabs my attention, perhaps the blister on my heel or a scratch on my knee.

It’s the quintessential pose of failure, a brief moment between steps where there’s a clear choice: move forward, or quit. But, there’s a silver lining. You see, I’ve already made up my mind long ago, and I’ve been preparing for this moment since I decided to sign up for the race. Before I know it, I’m running again.

While some see this as a “breaking point,” it’s really the heart of discovery.

To give some background, I decided I was going to run a 50 mile race about a year ago, when I ran the world’s highest marathon in the Himalayas. Since the race was in such a remote location, the majority of runners were local children from Ladakh, a mountainous region of Northern India. As I ran with my GPS watch, electrolyte drink, and pen-scribbled pacing goals on my forearm, the local kids were blazing past me, smiling, wearing their only pair of run-down sneakers. This wasn’t a race for them, it was a social event! So, when I saw a massive banana fight among a group of runners at mile 23’s aid station, I hissed with disappointment. This wasn’t what a marathon “should” look like. Are people actually enjoying this?

I realized two things during that race: 1. Challenging things can actually be fun, and 2. The majority of physical hardships are won mentally. Even though the race was difficult and at high altitude, I survived. It was time to go bigger, and longer. From that point on, I prepared to my mind and body, (mostly my mind) to run 50 miles.

And then before I knew it, I achieved my goal. It took me 10 hours and 23 minutes on slippery roots and rocks, mostly in the dark, but I ended up coming in first place. More importantly, I had fun.

One of my best friends paced me the last 25 miles, and now we have a great memory to share over a beer (particularly the moment where I broke down from dehydration and yelled at him that we were lost running in circles). My parents were even at the finish line at 1am — cheering in the rain. And my colleagues at FareHarbor have been overwhelmingly supportive, motivating me to achieve even more — both professionally and athletically.

So, when you arrive at that moment, staring at the ground, watching sweat drip from your nose to your feet — you’re faced with a decision. Either you quit, or you keep moving forward.

I’ve always been a firm believer that challenge breeds excellence. Whether it’s an emotional, physical, or all-encompassing wall, you always end up better on the other side. For me, running is a therapeutic challenge, a means to push to the limit, keep pushing, and then push some more.

Running isn’t for everyone, and that’s okay. We’re not all runners here at FareHarbor, and the team ranges from surfers to mountain bikers to cross-fit heroes. We’re all just trying to be better in our own ways.

The Key To Room Escape Success? Know When The Experience Starts.

Every room escape company knows that great products equal great games. They design, build, test, iterate, and maintain their rooms, because that’s where the money comes from. Right?

It’s true: room escape companies live and die based on the quality of their games. However, far too many companies forget that in order to play that brilliant game, players first need to find the company, purchase a ticket, and then get to the facility.

To make sure you don’t cause friction in these pre-game and pre-purchase steps, focus on creating an easy, positive experience for the customer long before they step through your door.

Remember that the customer experience begins as soon as their interest is sparked. A poor booking experience or a weak website can either sour a player’s experience before the game begins or dissuade a player from even booking in the first place.

Sound all too familiar? Here’s a few easy tips to make sure your players are already loving your business before you say ‘Go.’

Website Must-Haves

Your company’s website is the primary customer touchpoint before the game begins. It should inform and comfort potential players and always encourage them to purchase tickets.

Your physical address

This should go without saying, but every single room escape company website needs to have their physical address in a large, readable font on their homepage and contact page. If a player can’t find your facility, that’s the first red flag.

Game details

There’s a certain amount of intrigue that comes with hiding details from players before the game begins, but it’s more important to effectively manage expectations.

Is your game scary, sexual (there are a few of them!), or too challenging for players with mobility, hearing, or vision impairments? Make it clear who the game both is and is not for. Define your audience early to help people self-select into the right game.

Tips, comfort, and encouragement

Those of us who spend a lot of time around room escapes aren’t weirded out by the concept of paying strangers to lock us up in a giant puzzle. We’re a bit desensitized to the fact that the basic description of an escape room sounds like what Batman villains create to stop the Caped Crusader.

Understand that people might be afraid of the concept behind your business. Some don’t like the idea of being locked up; others are worried about claustrophobia; still others might be nervous they won’t be smart enough to contribute.

Your website provides a great opportunity to kill some myths about your game. Use it to:

  • Explain how your emergency releases and exits work.
  • Give players a sense of how open your game is.
  • Provide tips and help your players realize that communication and teamwork are far more valuable than math, logic, and booksmarts. (For some ideas, check out Room Escape Artist’s Player Tips.)

“Buy now” buttons

Make purchasing tickets easy and clear. Nothing is more frustrating than having players that want to give you their money, but are too confused by your website to figure out how to pay you.

Every single page on your website should have a “Buy Now” button on it that links directly to the page where players make purchasing decisions.

The Who, What, Where & When

Different customers will always prefer different communication channels. Make sure you’re available for open and easy communication, no matter what their preference. At minimum, you should be easily contacted via email, phone, webpage submission, Facebook, Twitter.

You should check and respond to each of these daily, if not more regularly. After all, you might only have one shot to help your customers with their purchase decision before they turn to another room escape or an entirely different activity.

Map & review sites

Although it might feel like there’s too many to count, it’s important that your business is properly listed on all – yes, all – of the big mapping and review sites. This includes:

  • Google Maps
  • Apple Maps
  • Bing Maps
  • Yelp
  • TripAdvisor

You should also send your company’s information to the Escape Room Submitter, which will get your company listed on a number of different room escape maps and lists.

Once you’re listed on these sites, verify that the pins are in the correct place. The first puzzle of your game should not be finding your facility.

Create enthusiasts

As teams of players come and go from your facility, it’s easy to forget how much effort it takes to get a group of adults in the same place, at the same time. Do your part to make it as easy as possible for your players to find, book and arrive at your game.

Once they’re there, all the hard work you’ve put into creating an awesome room escape experience will speak for itself. Between a seamless booking experience and exciting room escape, you’ll create a group of passionate repeat players that’ll support long term success.

Make it easy to love booking with your company; then focus on the fun part – the games – and watch your business grow.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: This post was written by our friends over at Room Escape Artist, experts in all things room escape, including reviews, products, design and players tips. Visit their site, www.roomescapeartist.com, for helpful posts, recommendations and industry news.

You can also find them on Twitter, @RoomEscapeArt, or Facebook. Give them a follow!

The Aloha Tour

When two of our team members decided they wanted to travel the country in a renovated Sportsmobile, we saw an opportunity to connect with our clients and get back to our roots. Here’s the story behind the Aloha Tour:

The past year has been quite the whirlwind. We added dozens of new features, introduced the FareHarbor app, and have been growing nonstop. In fact, as of today, our team is over 100 people strong, and we’re working with almost 3,000 of the nation’s tour & activity providers.

It’s crazy to think it was hardly over three years ago that we were a modest five-person team. Back then we worked intimately with our first and only client, spending long days on the deck of their catamaran, learning their business inside and out. Their office was our office, their clients were our clients, their success was our success. It was a true partnership.

Fast forward to today and we’re still working closely with that very first client, although now we do so from our own offices (a bummer for us, since you really can’t beat an ocean front desk). We’ve gone from face-to-face meetings to phone calls and email threads. It’s safe to say that some things have changed.

But then again, some haven’t.

We’re still a family-run business, built from the ground up on the North Shore of Oahu. And we still aim to make all of our clients feel as our first one did – like they’re the only one.

While it’s exciting to be growing, there’s a part of us that misses the old days. With today’s culture of tech, software and instant communication, so many of our client relationships end up being entirely virtual.

As a Hawaiian-born company, that’s not what we’re used to. Meetings in Hawaii are almost always in-person, and it’s common for us to know the business owners personally. It makes the people we work with feel less like clients, and more like our friends.

It’s time we bring that personal touch to the mainland. We want to shake more hands, talk more story, and put a face to a few more of the awesome people we work with.

When two members of our team decided to move into a Sportsmobile, we saw the chance to do just that. World, say hello to the Aloha Tour.

Over the next couple of months, two of our own will be touring the Northwest in their renovated camper van. After months of outfitting their rig with all the adventure necessities – solar power, mobile wifi, gear racks and storage – they’re ready to hit the highway.

Colton (Account Executive, West Coast) and Becca (Brand Marketing Manager) will be stopping in with FareHarbor clients as they go, getting us a step closer to the days when we had the privilege of meeting all our partners face-to-face.

If you’re in the Northwest and interested in saying hello, getting an in-person training, scoring some FareHarbor swag, or just sharing a beer with two people traveling in a van, we’d love to add you to our route.

In the meantime, you can see where we are and who we’re visiting by checking back here, or on our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

We’ll see you soon!

3 Simple Ways To Use FareHarbor To Communicate With Customers

Travelers today are used to instant gratification – they like the power to book from anywhere, at anytime – and they’ve come to expect the same when it comes to customer service. When a problem or question arises, they want proactive help and instant answers.

We designed the FareHarbor system to help you seamlessly communicate with customers, delivering answers to potential problems before they even arise. Here are the three easy ways you can use FareHarbor to take both your customer service and customer communication to a whole new level.

Send Text Reminders to Groups & Individuals

Take the stress out of last minute changes, shifting weather conditions or day-of reminders by sending text messages to individual customers or entire availabilities, directly from your dashboard.

Using your daily manifest, you can contact every customer on any one availability with just a few simple clicks. Your manifest includes a list of customers broken down by day, by tour and even by guide. Use it to shoot off a reminder to that one late arriver, or let the whole group know you’re excited for their tour.

This feature is especially helpful when sending important information – like updates on weather or meeting location – since the messages go directly to the customers cell phone.

Send Automated Confirmation Emails

Using email addresses collected from the checkout flow, the system can automatically send confirmation emails after a customer completes their booking.

If you offer multiple activities, you can design each individual email flow to have its own content and send timing. This means you can easily change the meeting time or location to match the tour, or add relevant information like a reminder to wear comfortable shoes or bring their own snorkel gear.

Send Follow-Up Emails With Automated Review Express

Meet your new favorite time saver. Our partnership with TripAdvisor enables FareHarbor users to automate their follow-up emails through a service called Automated Review Express.

Amp up your standard follow-up ‘Thank You’ with a fully customized, automated email sent directly from TripAdivsor. The service connects to your FareHarbor dashboard to access your daily manifest and delivers follow-up emails after each tours’ completion. Your email template can be endlessly customized with your copy, your branding and your logo.

In addition to whatever content you add to the body of the message, the email will encourage the customer to leave a TripAdvisor review on their recent experience.

On average, businesses using the service observe a 33% increase in reviews on TripAdvisor (data was for hotels). Meaning, you can collect more reviews, and polish up your customer service all at once.

Friday Features: Permissions, Manifest Filters, Campaign Blackout Dates, & More

Happy spring! Check out what’s new at FareHarbor these last few months with the return of Friday Features.

Fine-grained control over what your users can do

Custom user permissions In March we released custom user permission groups, which allow you to control what your users can see and do in the Dashboard.

Permission groups can control both what your company staff can do, as well as your affiliates who might also be using FareHarbor. This means that different users will only have access to what’s relevant to them, keeping your information more secure and your company more efficient and accurate.

Groups are customizable to fit your needs; just let us know if you need a new group added or an existing one changed.

Filter manifests and calendars

https://fh-sites.imgix.net/sites/278/2016/04/15180436/filter-manifests.jpg You can now filter manifests, making it easy to narrow down the list of bookings to only the ones you need. Filter by contact name, check-in status, number of customers, amount due, even custom fields.

We also added a new filter menu to the Bookings calendar. In addition to all the old options, there’s now the option to filter your view to only availabilities with a certain number of spaces left. It’s great for quickly finding open availabilities for larger groups: New filter menu Plus, all of these new filter options can be saved with your custom manifest or calendar, so you can come back to them any time.

Campaign blackout and valid dates

campaign blackout and valid dates We also added options to include valid or blackout dates for promotional and discount codes. This is especially helpful if you only want codes to be redeemable within a certain date range, or if you want to exclude certain dates like holidays. You can even make a code valid or invalid dynamically based on a number of days before a tour starts.

Check out the help page to learn more about how valid and blackout dates work.

And more

As always, we’ve made a lot of smaller fixes and improvements, as well as ongoing work on some big new projects. (More info on those coming soon.) Here are some of the smaller things we added lately:

  • A new item embed so you can put a grid of any of your FareHarbor items directly on your website. Let us know if you’d like to use it on your site and we’ll help you with the integration. New item embed

  • See a preview of what you can book from the flyout on the Bookings calendar. The numbers on the right (“12” in this example) show the maximum number of each customer type that you could book directly. flyout preview

  • Easily upload images or files when sending email

  • Large photos are now automatically resized in emails
  • Faster month, day, and agenda views if you have a lot of items
  • Faster access to your Affiliates list in Settings
  • Better messaging about overusing using campaign codes when signed in
  • Filter by availabilities with a certain headline when using the mass availability updater
  • Much more