The Niesen is a distinctive excursion mountain in the Bernese Oberland. In two sections, the longest funicular in the world leads up from Mülenen, 693m to 2,336m above sea level. In addition to the historic railroad, the Berghaus Niesen Kulm is the showpiece. Furthermore, the event and seminar offers are important business fields: In addition to sports and cultural activities, the Niesen is a mountain for parties and special occasions.
With the Pricenow webshop, the entire value chain of the Niesenbahn is covered: guests of the Niesenbahn can book their train ticket as well as mountain experiences, accommodation or restaurant reservations online. Thus, the comprehensive and diverse offer of the Niesenbahn for guests is completely united in one booking platform - an absolute added value for guests and the company. A modern design and high user-friendliness significantly improve the online booking experience for guests. Thanks to the responsive design of the webshop, booking for the mountain experience is possible at any time - whether on the computer, smartphone or tablet.
«During the development of the webshop, the focus was always on user-friendliness for customers: With the help of a clever shopping cart function, guests can always edit their selected products. The most important interfaces, such as the SwissPass, are also integrated in the webshop - so the guest can load his ticket with discount directly onto the SwissPass.» Jonas Meuli, CO-Founder Pricenow
With the Pricenow webshop it is possible that the SwissPass is also validated, so that the guests of the Niesenbahn can buy the reduced tickets with the GA or Half-Fare Card directly online. In addition, other relevant systems are directly connected: With E-GUMA, an important voucher system of the tourism industry is integrated and guests can easily redeem their vouchers in the webshop. The valuable customer data generated in the web store is imported directly and fully automatically into the CRM system "Wilken". The collected data offers considerable benefits to the Niesenbahn: Based on guest behavior, the Wilken system individualizes the content to be communicated for each recipient. As a result, the guest only receives relevant information and feels directly addressed.
The web store for the summer season was already ready to go online in April 2020; however, due to the COVID19 pandemic, this has been further developed at short notice.
«We are looking forward to welcoming the guests again! Fortunately, with Pricenow's innovative capacity management system, this is well possible despite limitations.» Urs Wohler, CEO Niesenbahn AG
In the future, the webshop will give guests the opportunity to reserve their excursion with specific times. The aim is to ensure that as few guests as possible arrive without a reservation and have to leave disappointed because there is no more room. It also helps to avoid congestion at the bottom station. The capacities can be flexibly adjusted at any time by the management of the Niesenbahn and are automatically adjusted in the webshop. Thus, a simple and flexible revision in the current dynamic environment is always guaranteed. But not only the train rides can be offered with limited seats: Events, offers and table reservations can be limited with capacities in the webshop. Current reports provide an overview of the current capacity utilization as well as reservations for the management or the Berghaus team of the Niesenbahn.
For the different products of the Niesenbahn, different pricing strategies are implemented in the webshop. While fixed prices are offered for the train rides of the Niesenbahn, the overnight stays in the Berghaus are based on a rule-based and thus more dynamic pricing strategy. The Pricenow webshop is specifically designed to optimally implement different pricing strategies. Through the connection to the Pricenow pricing engine, a wide variety of pricing forms can be implemented, from fixed prices to simple price rules (rule-based pricing) to fully automated and daily adjusted prices (dynamic pricing). This allows the Niesenbahn maximum flexibility to price its products and offers optimally.
The modern web store for the Niesenbahn with a coverage of the entire value chain as well as the innovative capacity management system is novel in the mountain cable cars and tourism industry. Not only the current situation and limitations due to COVID-19 can be handled by this, but also the need for digital customer solutions for the successful distribution of tourism services.