BusRates.com Steps Up Marketing Efforts
BusRates.com Inc., the national portal that connects luxury coach and transportation services directly to consumers, has announced a partnership with On Your Mark Transportation LLC to increase marketing efforts. The Nashville consulting firm specializes in the ground passenger transportation industries.
“It is truly an honor to be chosen by BusRates.com Inc. to increase awareness among consumers and the industry itself,” said Mark L. Szyperski, President and CEO of On Your Mark Transportation. “This single portal is so important for connecting businesses to consumers in the United States and Canada. “
The portal was launched in 2004 and was placed under the United Coach Association banner in 2011. The website has been developed to allow consumers looking for qualified ground transport to obtain quotes directly for the service of the supplier itself, which allows them to avoid a middleman, such as ‘a bus broker.
A ground transportation provider can place their information in a profile on the BusRates.com portal so that when a customer, for example, in California, searches for a coach company in Nashville or Chicago, they are directly connected with that. company for quotes and information. Then, if they choose that company, they can contact them directly for pickup, payment, and other important information, without going through a third party.
Similar to hotels.com
Larry Killingsworth, former president / CEO of WBU, described BusRates.com as a sort of hotels.com for ground transportation.
“If you want to move a school group of some sort to Alabama for a day trip, for example, we would be a great site to come,” he said. “You could put in your trip specifications and the site would provide the choices for your coach company. The consumer can inquire about each company and choose to get quotes from one of them. These companies, in turn, will respond to the consumer with a quote. “
The problem with working through a third party, he said, is that the consumer does not get information directly from the company they hire. If you are looking for bus rentals in a particular city, websites may appear. But when those links take you to a broker, that third party just takes your information, passes it on to the bus companies, and takes a share for themselves.
“They act like a useless intermediary person and sometimes some are unsavory,” he added.
Not only does BusRates.com benefit the consumer, it also benefits bus operators, Killingsworth said.
“Coach operators can use the site to reach consumers in new ways and attract new customers that they might not otherwise have,” he said.
Much of the coach and ground transportation industry consists of small private operators with a small number of buses or limousines, for example. Advertising and acquiring new customers can be particularly difficult for these businesses.
“As a non-profit organization, our role at UMA is to help these businesses be successful, and one way to do that is through BusRates.com, where we can provide them with useful quote requests through the Marketplace.” , did he declare.
BusRates best practices
One thing these companies should remember, Killingsworth said, is responding to quote requests in a timely manner. Customers expect near instant responses, and small businesses should know that even reaching out to the customer to let them know you’re going to quote is important.
“And don’t answer in industry jargon,” he said. “The customer just wants a safe and reliable trip.”
Roxana Melgar, chief executive of BusRates, said companies should reach out to potential customers to make sure they understand their needs and then provide clear proposals.
Any ground passenger transport company can register on BusRates.com by going to the portal and filling out the information form on the website. This profile page is what the consumer will see directly when performing a local or national search for ground passenger transport services. A business can list information such as the number of pieces of equipment, types (coach, school bus, mini-coach, limousine) and other items that it deems important to the customer. The client then indicates their research needs (location, type of equipment, etc.) and the site lists the companies that meet these criteria. Then the consumer can contact the supplier directly for further information.
“This system is so important to our industry,” Szyperski said. “This allows every ground passenger transportation provider to have international marketing capabilities through web research. My team’s goal will be to get this message out to suppliers and consumers through various marketing programs including social media, videos, and news media, to name a few.
BusRates.com partners with Web FX for search engine optimization and United Bus Technology for website optimization. The site is up-to-date and user-friendly, and they have seen requests for quotes more than double in 2021, as the market has recovered from the COVID pandemic, Killingsworth says.
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