Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Travolution@WTM–Happy Birthday to Travolution

Most people attending today's Travolution conference at World Travel Market correctly guessed that Travolution is one year old today.

Some people thought we were slightly older, which is good for a magazine, but bad for a woman.

But I digress.

It just so happens that Travolution was able to commemorate the occasion with some interesting facts about the online travel market, courtesy of Travolution’s publishing director, Simon Ferguson, and Guy Phillipson, CEO, Internet Advertising Bureau, both of whom addressed conference delegates.

Here are just a few of the factoids that emerged during Wednesday's opening session:

There was £917 million spent on internet advertising in the first half of 2006, representing a 40% increase year-on-year.

Put another way, £500,000 million pounds are spent on online advertising per quarter.

There are 30 million people online in the UK, representing 63% of the population.

Five years ago we would not have seen 45-54 year olds online, let alone the 55-plus demographic, but today this group makes up a significant proportion of the online population.

Fifty-four per cent of Brits visit a travel site every month and spend an average of 40 minutes per month viewing 70 pages of content.

Eighty-six per cent of people over aged 50 who are online have visited travel websites.

The average online spend per person is £642.

Twenty per cent of domestic holidays are booked online and 37% of foreign holidays are booked online.

Since 2003, UK domestic bookings have grown by nearly 50%, while foreign bookings have more than doubled.

Sixty per cent of internet users log online to seek information about travel, compared with 19% who seek travel information from newspapers; 17% from teletext and 14% from TV.

The percentage of male and female internet user are pretty evenly divided (though I do strongly suspect the types of sites men and women visit are drastically different, but that’s another blog).

Perhaps the most fascinating factoid of all is that90,000 new travel blogs will be created over the course of the four-day WTM event, according to Ferguson.

“Now imagine how that change in the media landscape will affect travel.”

Tricia Holly Davis
Freelance Journalist

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