Have you ever built a custom home? I certainly haven’t. It seems so foreign to me to have to pick out what color grout will best match my tile and which side of my door the door handle should go on. Where do I want my light fixtures or electrical outlets? I’m not sure—I just want to know they are there and are usable. In my experience, I prefer to buy and move into a home that has a cozy, “lived-in” feel, but with all of the upgrades and perks of a newer house. Somewhere that I can feel at home and enjoy time with my family and friends, but without having to think about all of the little details that went into making it that way.
In my day-to-day at Southwest, I actually sit on the opposite side of the fence from my home-buying preferences. For the past two years, our Online Customer Experience Team has been diligently working towards designing a new web “home” for Southwest, while still maintaining our existing—and affectionately loved—web site, southwest.com. This has been a daunting exercise at times, but also very exciting, as we have been able to make key decisions to the newest designs of our site navigation, booking paths, Customer Service features, and frequently used Travel Tools. We actively pursue feedback on how Customers prefer to book travel, how they choose to engage with us online or on their personal devices, and what features they wish we would have in the future. It’s all about the details for us, and we LUV knowing that our page designs might make it easier for thousands of Customers to book their trips or find exactly what they’re looking for.
Recently, southwest.com earned a first place ranking for having the best possible Customer Experience for air travel web sites. Keynote Competitive Research conducted the survey by observing and conducting online interviews with 2,000 prospective air travel Customers across ten leading air travel web sites. The Customers were asked to evaluate a variety of features, including the home page, flight search, booking path, and Customer Service tools. We are proud to report that Southwest Airlines was the clear winner for overall Customer Experience and received such comments from participants as “friendly,” “fun,” and, a “good value,” as they related their experience on southwest.com.
This is a fantastic honor for us, and we are so pleased that this study showed the fruits of all the hard work that has gone into the continued redesign of our web site. Though to us, our work is never done! It will continue to be our Team’s goal to get these details just right so that when you are browsing the site to plan your next trip, you will find it so easy that you’ll feel right at home.