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Trends Q: Does the ability to email a resort guest impact the likelihood they’ll return?

photo of the author Gregg Blanchard

 Mar 10, 2020

For the last few weeks we’ve been on a mission to find some of the most important traits and behaviors that impact the likelihood a guest will return to a resort. Among the factors we looked at, one of the most straightforward was whether or not a guest had a valid email address on file. The results were surprising.

The Goods
First, let’s specify what we mean by emailability in this analysis. Rather than analyze the people who received emails or opened emails, we took a wide view and defined it as anyone that has a valid, non-opted-out email in a resort’s database.

To find our answer we looked at over 100,000 guests who lodged at mountain resorts during either the 2010/11 or 2011/12 winter seasons, grouped them by their “emailable” status, and found the return rate (booked lodging again the next season) of each group. Here’s how it shook out.

Even just glancing at the chart, it’s easy to see that the difference is significant. To put exact numbers to the data points, 22.7% of emailable guests from the sample returned the following year opposed to 13.1% of non-emailable guests.

What This Means
With a fairly consistent correlation between age and emailability, we don’t think plays a role. But how specific behavior within the emailable group impacts return rates (e.g., provided email organically vs. during transaction) is something we’ll have to dig deeper on in a future Stash.

What seems to be clear is the value of having an email address on file. Even lumping in everyone – regardless of how many emails they received or opened or clicked – shows that people who you can reach via email are much more likely to return to your resort than those who do not.

Come on Down
Another Stash insight like this one is dropping in less than a week. If you don’t want to miss it, stick your email below and we’ll give you a heads up when it’s published.

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