Continuing our travel-themed series this week, today we look at the favored channels of product research for Vacation Buyers.

As with most groups, Vacation Buyers are part of a trend which sees younger users turn to social, while older users still stick with search engines. 81% of Vacation Buyers aged 16-24 are on Instagram, showing how important the visual element can be for social research. Social also helps tap into peer-to-peer referrals, though Vacation Buyers do visit dedicated consumer review sites for recommendations, with it taking third spot among all age groups, rising to 52% for 55-64s.

Along with consumer review sites, product/brand sites are more important to older users as well. In both cases, the website element is important. With older internet users generally more wedded to desktops, resources found through web browsers are more relevant. The equivalent for younger internet users is researching more through mobile apps. This shift in vacation research to mobile-optimized resources is borne out in our data for online activities, where 56% of Vacation Buyers of all ages visit travel websites on mobile, compared to 42% on PC/laptop.

It’d be easy to assume that the research needed for a major purchase would be carried out more on PC than mobile, with the need to compare transport, accommodation, local attractions, and anything else that might be included on a vacation. But it appears that the convenience of using the device closest to hand, and the device most connected to social media apps, could be the deciding factor.

Vacation Buyers are defined as internet users aged 16-64 who are planning to buy a vacation abroad or at home in the next 6 months.

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Chris is a Senior Trends Analyst at GlobalWebIndex. Moving to the company in 2017 after working in publishing, he produces blogs, infographics and reports on the most pressing topics in the worlds of technology, marketing, and many others.

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