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Evolution2, Tignes, Evolution 2 Tignes, Team, Ski School, Snowboard School, French Alps, Alps

Skipodium Announces Strategic Partnership with Ski School Evolution 2 Tignes

Evolution2, Tignes, Evolution 2 Tignes, Team, Ski School, Snowboard School, French Alps, Alps

Evolution 2 Tignes has a highly certified and passionate team of 60 ski and snowboard instructors. (Photo courtesy of Evolution 2 Tignes)

Tignes is starting to see some snowfall, and opening day is just around the corner!

With 300km of pistes and 10,000 hectares (24710.54 acres) of off-piste terrain contained in Tignes-Val d’Isère, the ski area shared by the two resorts, there is a spot for every type of skier on the mountain.

Now you can book in advance a ski lesson with Evolution 2 Tignes through Skipodium.

Heavy snow, Tignes, Skipodium, Ski school, Ski fun

Tignes blanketed by heavy snow. (Ian A Gratton / Flickr)

Evolution 2 Tignes Ski and Snowboard School was founded in 1989 and has since become one of the most prominent ski and adventure schools in the French Alps.

Through small group and private instruction held by high quality instructors, Evolution 2 focuses on providing a hands-on experience for students that is progressive, educational and fun.

Evolution 2 Tignes, Tognes, Ski Resort, Skipodium, French Alps, SKi, Snowboard

Evolution 2 Tignes offers ski and snowboard lessons for people of all ages and skill levels. (@Evolution2.OutdoorSpecialists / Facebook)

Evolution 2 operates in 14 ski resorts across France:

They also host lessons internationally at resorts in Chile, Portugal and Morocco.

According to their website, Evolution 2 Tignes is “constantly researching and developing new products and teaching methods to ensure [they] remain leaders in the skiing world.

When asked how technology is currently shaping the ski industry, Douglas Favre, director of Evolution 2 Tignes and neighboring partner Val d’Isère, said. “Like in every other field, I think technology is here to facilitate the way we work, giving us time to focus on our products and of course our clients.

That is one of the reasons why Evolution 2 decided to partner with Skipodium.

Their goals for the season are to increase efficiency while communicating with partners, while also enhancing their digital development. As a result, they hope to reach more clients across the globe, through an innovative multi-channel selling platform.We hope that Skipodium can help us provide an easy system for our clients to book our activities with a modern and intuitive interface to manage in the back office”, Favre explained.

So far, the partnership is off to a smooth start. Favre described the ease in implementation of Skipodium’s management software at Evolution 2 Tignes, attributing it to the Skipodium’s team proactive customer service.

Evolution 2 Tignes joins the expanding list of over 150 ski schools worldwide who use Skipodium, the industry’s leading booking and management platform.

Book a lesson with Evolution 2 Tignes today!

Partnerships, Partnership, Skipodium

Meet Wintersportschule Gerlos, Zillertal Arena, Austria

Skipodium continues its global expansion by announcing a new partner in Austria.

Reno, NV, USA (June 30 2018)

Skipodium announced a partnership today with Wintersportschule Gerlos to provide and service its innovative ski school booking and management platform from Winter 2018. This partnership marks the beginning of the Company’s expansion into the Austrian market.

Partnerships, Partnership, Skipodium

Wintersportschule Gerlos & Skipodium are partners from Winter 2018

Last week Giacomo Migliori, our CEO, interviewed with Melanie Wechselberger, manager of Wintersportschule Gerlos:

G: Hi Melanie, could you give us an overview of your Ski School?

M: Wintersportschule Gerlos was founded in 2016 and operates in the Zillertal Arena, one of the largest and most advanced ski areas in Austria with its 150 km of slopes. We provide unique on-piste and off-piste experiences in Gerlos, Mayrhofen, Zell am Ziller and Wald Königsleiten.

 

G: What is Wintersportschule Gerlos all about and what is your mission?

M: We are a young and innovative snow sports team. We always wanted to be more than a traditional ski school, by sharing our passion for outdoor activities with clients from all over the world. Wintersportschule Gerlos strives to make our guests’ dreams into reality by sharing breathtaking moments on top of the mountains and having fun in a safe environment. Our unique value proposition is the highly personalized service that our team brings to the table, thanks to many years of experience teaching ski and snowboard lessons as well as freeride tours.

 

Wintersportschule Gerlos, Skipodium,

The team of Wintersportschule Gerlos

G: Which system were you using prior to switching to Skipodium and what were the challenges you faced?

M: We previously used Waldhart Software, which couldn’t meet all our business needs besides being expensive. We wanted to find an easy-to-use and modern technology to streamline our back-office operations and cut administrative costs. We decided to use Skipodium’s platform because it turned out to be the only provider that meets our business requirements at a fair price.

 

G: What are your business objectives for the upcoming seasons?

M: Our goals are to increase online sales through a one-stop-shop and streamline our ski school operations. We believe that a modern and mobile-first booking system will make our guests’ booking experience as simple and intuitive as it should be. Our team is also focused on a number of digital marketing techniques to enhance Wintersportschule Gerlos’ online presence.

 

Wintersportschule Gerlos, SKipodium

Wintersportschule Gerlos on top of the mountain

G: What issues did you solve by implementing Skipodium’s technology?

M: We solved nearly all headaches we had with the old system. Skipodium’s platform is easy-to-use, mobile-friendly and makes the communication between our administrative team and our instructors seamless. Their multilingual booking system will help us deliver an improved guest experience, besides giving us access to a multi-channel distribution network.

 

G: Please describe briefly your experience during the implementation and training phases. Anything worth sharing with other ski schools?

M: Skipodium is taking a lot of care with its customers. The team has spent a considerable amount of time to make the onboarding and training processes as smooth and easy as possible; I especially appreciate their responsiveness rate, unlike other customer service that several days to respond to our requests.

 

G: Any thoughts on how technology is shaping the ski industry?

M: The progress that technology has made in the past years has been massive. I think that the leisure industry has still untapped potential that technology can help exploit. Austria heavily relies on tourism, and it is our responsibility to keep up with latest trends in order to stay competitive in the market. Hence, our decision to partner with Skipodium to boost online sales and enhance our online presence.

 

Wintersportschule Gerlos, Team, Skipodium

The full team of Wintersportschule Gerlos from behind

#58, PSAA, ski expo, ISKI NY

ISKI NY-PSAA EXPO – Skipodium was there

Giacomo and Francesco, our 2 co-founders, have attended the 2017 PSAA Expo (aka Pennsylvania Ski Areas Association Expo) organized by ISKI NY – on September 18th – 20th. The show took place at Camelback Resort, in Tannersville, Pennsylvania.

Our set up: Booth #58

We set up Table #58 with 2 roll-ups and one spider wall covering the table.

#58, PSAA, ski expo, ISKI NY

Table set up for Skipodium at ISKI NY – PSAA Expo. Gadgets and handovers.

We handed over our promotional giveaways (aka pens, luggage tags and locks, beer openers) as well as some informative flyers about Skipodium.

Our booth was located in a pretty strategic position, which granted us great exposure and constant flow of visitors across the 2 expo days. In fact, we were between the best Waffle franchising business and the Expo bar and restaurant 🙂

Waffle cabin, franchising, wafles, ISKI NY, PSAA 2017

Waffle Cabin handing over free delicious waffles.

 

Skipodium Inc. was a silver sponsor of the Expo.

Our experience

Our trip to Tannersville was a great way to do business with regional players and to network with other industry players. We met key industry people without the usual trade show rush.

The overall atmosphere was welcoming and informal, and the event organization impeccable.

PSAA and I SKI NY

The Pennsylvania Ski Areas Association (PSAA) is a non-profit trade organization developed to promote and service the ski areas across Pennsylvania.  One of the associations PSAA collaborates with in order to encourage networking between suppliers and resorts as well as to support industry engagement is I SKI NY. I SKI NY, also known as Ski Areas of New York is a member-based, independent ski association representing over 40 ski areas and 100 suppliers to the ski industry.

Expo 2017, PSAA, ISKI NY

ISKI NY logo on roll-up. PSAA Expo 2017

Camelback Resort

Camelback Resort, in the heart of the Pocono Mountains, is one the best resorts in the Poconos. The resort includes many facilities for lodging, relaxation, family entertainment – as well as a super fun indoor waterpark!!

Pennsylvania, Tannersville, ISKINY 2017, PSAA, Camelback resort

Entrance of Camelback Lodge Resort, Tannersville, Pennsylvania

 

new features, skipodium, sales channels, ski, snowsports, snowboard, winter season

8 New Features for Your Next Winter Season with Skipodium

We have just released these 8 features to skipodium.com. Whether you are a snowsports school, a ski resort or an independent instructor, these upgrades can make a difference in your online presence!

Register your winter sports business here !

features, skipodium, next season

After 2016/17 winter season, we have developed several features to improve Skipodium. Check out these 8 new features.

monetization, distribution, ski website, websites, skipodium,

5 easy ways to monetize the traffic of your ski website

You have a ski website but don’t know yet how to monetize your traffic? Check out these free 5 affiliate programs!

Google AdSense displays advertising on your site.

Adsense, online tool, skipdium

AdSense is a free, simple way to make money online by placing ads on your website.

Google offers its affiliates the possibility to earn money by displaying ads on their own websites. Affiliates are categorized by topic and (more or less) Google-related ads will be shown on their sites. Being listed as Google distribution partner is as simple as this 3-step sign up process.

Adsense is a pretty popular way to monetize a website: it is quick and easy to join, and does not require much effort to manage. Though, profits for affiliates represent only a small fraction of the total earnings from the publishers, so unless your traffic volume is high, do not expect big incomes through this channel.

A common mistake with Adsense is to overload the affiliate site with ads, leading to disturbing navigation for core site users.

Sell accommodations from Booking.com

booking.com, hotel booking, distribution API

Booking.com is the world leader in booking accommodation online. Each day, over 1,200,000 room nights are reserved on Booking.com. The Booking.com website and apps attract visitors from both the leisure and business sectors worldwide.

Are there hotels or vacation rentals in your area of interest? If yes, Booking.com is your go-to! The site offers a wide range of APIs and white label solutions to affiliates who want to promote its offers. Most of their distribution integrations do not require technical skills to implement and can be a very good revenue stream for any ski business. Also, each of them can be easily customized according to the look and feel of your website.

Booking.com pays variable commission to its affiliates depending on the sales volumes delivered: the higher the amount of sales, the higher your margin. Therefore, your success depends directly on how well your traffic and conversion rate that your website delivers.

Sell flights or car rentals via Skyscanner

Skyscanner, distribution API, flights

Skyscanner is a travel metasearch and one of the most transparent ways of searching for travel and delivers just what consumers want – the ability to compare and contrast a huge range of products and purchasing options in a truly unbiased manner.

Skyscanner offers a number of affiliation programs to re-sell their flight and car rental offers. Similarly to B.com, also Skyscanner provides several integration possibilities, ranging from data APIs, to white labels and widgets.

If you decide on the API integration, Skyscanner lets you choose whether to use hard cached or live availability and price data, the trade-off being response time VS data accuracy. Many factors come into play here, but ultimately the choice varies based on the structure of your own site. If well implemented, it can definitely become a good revenue stream for your business.

Sell ski passes via Liftopia.

lift tickets, liftopia, distribution API

Liftopia sells discount lift tickets, ski rentals, and lessons at 250+ ski resorts and is the largest retailer of lift tickets on the web with discounts of up to 80% off at your favorite resorts.

Feel like adding lift tickets to your offer? Get in touch with Liftopia and join their affiliation program. Liftopia provides a free and easy-to-install widget to distribute their lift tickets. Affiliate commission are around 3% of the total booking value; it is flat and in most cases, not dependent on the volumes delivered.

Liftopia affiliation program is a great way to include in your portfolio a service that specifically targets skiers. It is still relatively unusual, but very useful if your audience is going skiing.

Sell winter sports activities via Skipodium

Skipodium, mountain activities, snowsports, ski lessons, snowboard lessons, distribution API, marketing API, resorts, sales ski solutions, management software

Skipodium is a global marketplace for winter sport activities. Skipodium provides management and sales software to snowsports schools and resorts as well as marketing solutions for third parties.

Fancy selling wintersports lessons from resorts nearby and make money with it? Join Skipodium affiliate program! Skipodium offers to its partners a good set of distribution solutions: availability and booking APIs, Iframes and link-outs. Most integrations do not require IT skills and affiliates can earn up to 6% of the total booking value depending on the amount of sales per month.

If your website’s audience includes outdoor enthusiasts, Skipodium is definitely a tool to include in your offer!

SKICOOL, Val Thorens, 3 Vallees

Meet SKICOOL – Val Thorens, France

val thorens, skicool, skiing, snowboarding, snowboard, ski

SKICOOL team in Val Thorens, Les Trois Vallées, France. Team building

A gifted skier, a charismatic leader and a big Led Zeppelin fan all at once: among others, Annie Breyton is the founder and director of SKICOOL – Val Thorens. Today she tells Skipodium a little more about herself and her school.

3 adjectives that best describe SKICOOL:

Friendly, professional and innovative.

When was your school born?

SKICOOL was born in the winter season 1981/82; we are the 2nd ski school in our resort right after ESF. As a young lady, I founded the school with 2 colleagues from the French National racing team. We were initially based in a local ski shop, and, as business took off, we opened our own office.

In which resorts do you operate?

We operate in Val Thorens in the 3 Vallées, France. Val Thorens has been awarded 3 times (respectively in 2013, 2014, and 2016) as World Best Ski Resort.

How many instructors does SKICOOL count?

As of today, our team includes 20 instructors: they are all experienced, and well-trained at teaching and customer-facing. Our instructors have been carefully selected through years in order to cover all types of ski and snowboard riding requests. I am very proud of our diverse mix of talents and abilities! In a period where diversity wasn’t as mainstream as it is today, we employed equal number of women and men, as well as a young and older instructors!

What languages can you accomodate?

We are a very international group! As today we cover all languages required by our clients: English, French, Russian, Spanish, German, Italian and… Sign language! We have specifically looked for instructors who can also teach less fortunate people because skiing should be for all!

What are your strengths?

It’s difficult to name one in particular: it’s about the whole atmosphere that our small yet united team creates to facilitate learning. We carefully listen to our clients’ needs and try hard to accomodate all of their requests. We always take time to understand our customers’ needs and whishes and often we customize our lessons for them. More than once, in fact, one single customer request turned into a recurrent offer of SKICOOL. Flexibility and customization are key!

What differentiates SKICOOL from others?

We are the only school in Val Thorens offering Monoski and Wingjump lessons.

We have a great quality/price ratio. Our conviviality is free of charge 🙂

What are your 3 best selling products?

  1. Ski Private lessons
  2. Children and adults ski group lessons
  3. Snowboard private lessons

Your first season using Skipodium: What did you like?

The whole dynamic just worked out very well: the booking process was easy and quick to pick up; the information that Skipodium was providing to the clients precise and accurate: the meeting points were well defined, the characteristics of the lessons in line with our offer and the logistics very straight forward for all parties.

What needs to be improved?

I would like Skipodium to build a solid bridge between our management software and theirs.

Alltogether, skicool, valthorens, val thorens, resort, ski, snowboard, team, ski school

business plan, skipodium, forecasts, results

Skipodium’s first winter season: how did we do?

It’s the end of our first winter season and our team can now look back and comment on the results. Overall, the newborn Skipodium has rocked the season!

While we have been developing our management software for the past 2 years, we only launched our e-commerce in October 2016. Unlike many might think, that was a smart choice.

Our achievements

Skipodium is a management software and reservation system for snow sports activities, and its ultimate clients are companies providing snow sports lessons. After 1 year working on the MVP, we gave our BETA software to few snowsports schools and spent another full year on feedbacks and corrections. After the official launch, we created a good provider base much faster than we thought.

We found 4 main reasons for that:

  • At the moment of the official launch, our software was actually ready and tested by schools with real day-to-day needs. That avoided us lots of troubles and discontent after launching.
  • Because of an end-to-end testing, we had a good idea of our strengths and weaknesses as well as the competitive arena we are playing into.
  • We spent a considerable amount of time with schools and instructors before opening the registration to all snow school and resorts. This helped us gain their trust and move faster with integrations.
  • Besides facilitating online sales, Skipodium is a tool to help snowsports schools with their business operations. Therefore we gave our software to several snowsports schools not (just) interested in selling online – giving us a larger audience.

What we need to improve

If we have done a good job with the software, we can’t say the same about Skipodium’s e-commerce. A 3 steps snow-commerce is not as straight-forward as it could seem, because of the following:

  • During our first season, we found pretty damn hard to get the complexity VS clarity ratio just right. It takes lots of effort and attention to build a site that really answers the questions that skiers are after. Assuming you have all data you need, it will surely take extra time to reasonably display it to the users.
  • Because winter sports fans demand customization and flexibility in the offline world, a website selling ski lessons has to offer the same possibilities. While we start with a fully regulated technical approach, moving forward, we loosened up the ends of our system and left more space to human-to-human interactions.
  • Building a community around our product has been and is crazy time consuming. No exact science here – just constant experiments (social, content marketing, PPC, etc).
  • Towards the end of the season we launched our website in German and Italian, and only then we experienced some success that localization can bring.

Check our results below!

Business results 2016/17 Skipodium.

Skipodium’s first winter season results: check out our first year of activity at a glance!

Yield management for ski schools and resorts: is it really a thing? Why and how.

Is yield management applicable to snowsports operators selling lessons or lift pass tickets? Yes, it is.

What is yield management?

Yield management uses the strategy of offering the right product, at the right time, to the right customer, at the right price, each of which involves specific tactics to be effective. When implemented well, yield management narrows the gap between the amount of revenue your business could bring in and the amount of revenue it actually brings in. The result is ‘yield efficiency’. Yield management has been successfully applied to several industries and it has completely revolutionized the way people perceive goods or services.

Look at flight tickets: there is a long list of factors contributing to the price of a single ticket; several are related to the available inventory.  Yield efficiency regulates exactly this: it defines price fluctuations based on the (expected) demand of a good so better meet the demand and increase margins. Essentially, this is why when you buy a flight ticket, its price is higher when purchased towards the date of the flight itself.

Can yield management be applied to snowsports lessons?

Yield management can be applied to any product or service that is impermanent and has limited inventory. Ski or snowboard lessons are limited by the number of instructors available for the lesson – also if they are not taking a lesson at a given point in time, the lesson decays and it would never be available anymore in the future. So – good news! – YES, yield management can be applied to snowsports lessons too.

Why the snowsports lesson industry needs yield management:

  • Up to 85% higher margin on each lesson sold (Industry leaders experienced that the consumer price of a good can almost double based on when the product / good is purchased).
  • Better know your clientele (How much your clients are willing to spend for a lesson? Some buy in advance some hold off. As long as you know their requirements you d also be able to pick the right price point for your lesson).
  • Improve conversion (Inventory is limited and communicating this is important. By communicating a limited supply of product at a particular price, the consumer is encouraged to buy now).

How?

Obviously more or less complex yield strategies can be applied to your business. Below 3 easy steps to approach and implement a basic yield model for your snowsports school or resort:

  • Question your clients (How much are they willing to spend for your lessons?).
  • Set up a tiered pricing (based on your availability for example: if someone books a lesson when all instructors are still available, price should be lower compared to when only few are available). At Skipodium we help schools and resorts around the world with pricing strategy and yield management. Check out our free software!
  • Stretch and play with the gap min price / max price (knowing the price extremes will help you redefine and improve your yield over time).

 

 

 

 

Logo Skipodium

Why a blog?

Hello world! And welcome to our first blog post, you peeps!

Today we have decided that it would be a good day to launch our brand new Skipodium blog! So we did 🙂 The first time we internally talked about it was sometime last year but we never really had the chance to get down to work because the ski season was approaching and we still had toooooons to do with the site. By that time we definitely did not have a clear vision on where the site would be and how things would develop through the season. We went through so many changes and had so many news on a daily basis, that we did not really have much time to step back and sort of organize the thoughts to actually be any usable by our audience.

What the hell is Skipodium?

Right. Here some needed introduction:

Skipodium.is.an.online.market.place.for.winter.sports.lessons.

Logo Skipodium

And this is our logo 🙂

…essentially Skipodium is the place to go to compare and purchase their winter sports lessons. We do not have our own school, neither have we our own ski lessons. What we do is to provide the technology to schools and independents around the world who want to sell their lessons online and help them vehicle their products to the Magic World of the Internet, hooking them up with people who need a snowsports lesson.

Why we are starting a blog?

  1. Should be fun?!
  2. It’s the easiest way to share news us and about our site.
  3. We want to stay in touch with you and know you better!
  4. We need a not-always-catchy-marketing  space where to share our passion for winter sports and technology.

Now sit back and relax.. We are gonna be back soon!