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Macroeconomic trends impacting the industry, consumer sentiment, purchasing behaviour and in-market trends in travel

With extensive oversight of the car rental and mobility industries, CarTrawler shared insights on changes in consumer sentiment and purchasing behaviour, and some of the most impactful macroeconomic trends impacting the travel industry at its recent Winter Conference.


As CarTrawler operates at the intersection between partners, suppliers and customers, they act as a central node within the car rental industry.  Speaking at CarTrawler’s annual Winter Conference at Powerscourt Hotel, Gavin Sweeney, Head of Business Performance at CarTrawler, brought the audience through key industry developments and insights.


Changes in purchasing behaviour was one of the most insightful takeaways. With 21% of CarTrawler’s current car rental reservations coming through mobile, it was found that desktop reservations were flat or declining across the board in all markets. While the shift to mobile is an exciting prospect, it presents a number of distinct challenges for the industry as a whole. The average Click Through Rate for travel goods is +1.4pp and ranks as the highest CTR across all industries, but conversion is the lowest when compared with other industries.


CarTrawler is working closely with its travel partners to unlock demand across key touchpoints on their platforms. This is complemented by CarTrawler’s ongoing simplification of the user experience, with consistent UI and UX iterations, testing and deploying to drive value through the mobile funnel.


Ronan Smyth, CarTrawler’s Head of Car Supply also took to the stage to highlight the headwinds that were seen across the industry. Ronan spoke of how CarTrawler is well-placed to react to these industry-wide changes. In particular, CarTrawler’s’ diversified partner mix has the ability to counteract certain negative market trends. CarTrawler’s strong relationships with global car rental suppliers also mean that they can be collaborative in their approach and work together to drive business performance that delivers results, despite challenging market conditions.