Results! Travel reports the initial findings from its “2013 Results! Travel Census.” Similar to the United States Census conducted every 10 years, the goal was to compile a highly-composite picture of today’s Results! Travel agencies, the group said. This is the first Census that Results! Travel has conducted since 2008 – immediately prior to the onset of the Great Recession – and it was completed between June 10 and July 5, 2013, by 33 percent of the network’s agency owners, Results! said.
“A tremendous cross-section of our network provided detailed feedback in our 2013 Census. Member agency owners participating represent locations in 40 states plus the District of Columbia,” stated Results! Travel Vice President and General Manager John Risner.
“While what we are providing today is a really ‘nuts-and-bolts’ look at agencies in our network, I can’t help but be incredibly gratified that nearly 90 percent of surveyed members indicated they are satisfied with their Results! Travel membership and over 97 percent would recommend joining Results! Travel to another agency owner. This validates that the tools and resources we are continually adding to assist our members in making more money are having a positive impact,” Risner said.
The following data is based on responses from 217 Results! Travel Member agency owners across America:
· Agency Type: Nearly 81 percent (80.7%) own a retail, brick-and-mortar travel agency location.
· Number of Full-time Employees: Over 69 percent (69.1%) of Census participants indicated they have 1-3 full-time employees, including the owner(s), and the single largest percentage response was “2 full-time employees” (24.4%). In 2008, 60.8 percent indicated they had 1-3 full-time employees and the single largest response was “3 full-time employees” (26.4%).
· Salary or Commission: When asked, “How are most of your employees paid?” the responses included: In 2013 50.8 percent offered 100 percent salary vs 48.9 percent in 2008; Combination of salary and commission - 33.9 percent in 2013 vs 37.0 percent in 2008; 100 percent commission in 2013 -15.3 percent and 14.1 percent in 2008.
Independent Contractors (ICs): When asked, “Do you currently host any independent contractors?” over half (51.2%) of Census participants responded “Yes.”
· Of those who indicated they have ICs, the vast majority (88.5%) stated they have 1-5 ICs working for them, which is nearly identical to the responses in 2008.
· When asked, “What is your typical commission split with independent contractors?” the responses included:
Independent contractors received 61.85 percent in 2013 and 58.5 percent in 2008. The agency received 38.15 percent in 2013 and 41.5 percent in 2008.
Longevity & Satisfaction with Results! Travel: When asked, “In what year did your agency join Results Travel?” the single most-selected answer (23.5%) by this cross-section of Results! Travel agency owners was “In the year 2000.” (That was the year the franchise organization began.) Looking at additional responses, 61.8 percent indicated they joined Results! Travel between 2000 and 2005, which shows longevity and satisfaction with the franchise organization which allows them to do business under their own travel agency name.
· When asked, “How satisfied are you with your Results! Travel Membership?” nearly 90 percent (89.4%) indicated they are either “Very Satisfied” or “Somewhat Satisfied.” (An additional 7.4% indicated they are “Neither satisfied nor unsatisfied.”)
· When asked, “Would you recommend membership in Results Travel to another agency?” 97.2 percent said yes in 2013.
Sales & Service Fees: When asked, “What are your company’s annual gross dollar bookings?” a full 70 percent indicated that their sales are between $1 million and $9.99 million. In 2008, that percentage was merely 42 percent.
· When asked, “In what year did you start charging service fees?” a third of survey participants (33.6%) indicated they started charging service fees for their expertise and knowledge “prior to 2000” and over 75 percent (75.5%) started charging services prior to 2005.
· When asked what Results! Travel agency owners charge service fees for, the responses were: “Only for air tickets” (51.7%), “A flat fee” (47.9%), “On all travel planning” (18.2%). Respondents were allowed to choose more than one option.
· While understanding that service fees may vary depending on the type of travel or complexity of work Results! Travel agencies handle on behalf of each client, survey participants were asked to give an estimated average service fee charged per client:
Under $10 - 0.0%
$10-24 - 10.2%
$50-74 - 11.7%
$100 or more - 2.4%
Use of Preferred Suppliers & Exclusive Results! Travel Programs: When asked to break down their usage of Results! Travel preferred suppliers versus non-preferred suppliers,agency owners indicated they use Results! Travel preferred suppliers 70.4 percent of the time. In the 2007 Census, fewer agency owners indicated use of the network’s preferred suppliers (64.3%).
· When asked, “Which products do you most frequently sell through Results! Travel’s preferred suppliers?” the top responses members provided were air, all-inclusive resorts, cruises and escorted tours. Results! Travel says it has enjoyed significant preferred supplier relationships with all four continuously since its founding in 2000.
· When asked, “What Results! Travel programs and services do you take advantage of?” the top responses were: Preferred Supplier Programs (86.6%), Override Programs (75.1%), “On Your Behalf” Marketing (37.8%), Results! Travel Help Desk (37.3%), and Exclusive Cruise Values (26.3%).
A record number of Results! Travel owners, agents and ICs are registered for the 2013 Results! Travel National Meeting which will take place September 12-14 in Bloomington, MN, Results! reports.
The “Over the Top”-themed conference will feature stage and screen star David Cassidy as the keynote speaker and entertainer for the closing reception, a full supplier trade show, exclusive training and workshops on topics such as luxury travel ICs, plus a closing reception hosted by the Mall of America.