Sykes Cottages, the UK’s leading independent agency for cottage holidays, spotted a gap in their customer journey - a lack of interaction after bookings. They decided to address this by creating an app. Sykes Cottages approached Degree 53 to bring in a fresh perspective into how they could improve their customer engagement, as well as building that solution.
Sykes Cottages Travel App
Product Design Sprint
Sykes Cottages wanted to explore different ideas to help them bridge the gap between their brand and customers. The Degree 53 team took them through several product design sprints to find the most suitable solution. Each workshop started with looking at the various ways this app could add value for holidaymakers and help them connect with the company. Once the team found the best option, the designers created a prototype and carried out user testing to ensure it met the requirements of both Sykes Cottages and their customers. Once the team received positive feedback, the project was ready for development and design.
App Development and Design
Degree 53 provided digital expertise in creating a solution to meet Sykes Cottages’ and their customers’ needs. The team provided bespoke design, development and integrations with third party systems for the app.
The project requirements involved creating a tailored experience for each user, depending on where they have chosen to stay. Developers designed the solution with the capability to adapt to different scenarios and display relevant information to the customer. The designers put together a selection of icons to use alongside this data.
Degree 53 created a mobile app for Sykes Cottages, which offers a personalised post-booking experience to help customers make the most of their stay. The app enables users to make plans in the area of their cottage, find various leisure and entertainment activities, book pubs and restaurants, as well as learning more about the surrounding areas.
The travel companion app is aimed at holidaymakers that have already booked accommodation and want to start planning their holiday in more detail. Customers can benefit from personalised deals, receive local recommendations and learn tips from the property owners. Users can also manage their bookings, pay outstanding balance and re-book the property for another holiday. This way, Sykes Cottages can stay in touch with their customers and make their holiday more enjoyable.
The app has been downloaded by around 8,540 iOS users and 3,455 Android users.
We’re very excited about our new holiday app. It enables us to grow our relationship with our customers, offer them useful advice for their breaks, as well as encouraging them to make another booking. The team at Degree 53 were very knowledgeable about how this app could help our business and what customers look for in travel products. They’ve helped us create a more personalised approach to our bookings. We were also impressed how valuable the Product Design Sprint workshops and user testing can be at the beginning of creating an app.