Session persistence streamlines usability for millions of customers
Whitbread PLC is the owner of the U.K.’s leading hotel chain, Premier Inn, serving over five million customers each month at 800 hotel and restaurant locations. Already the largest hotel chain in the country, Premier Inn continues to grow at an astonishing rate, currently opening one new hotel every ten days on average. Whitbread built and sustains this level of success by ensuring that customers always have a great experience when they turn to Premier Inn.
“People know if they go through Premier Inn they get the cheapest rates,” says Danny Goodwin, digital delivery manager, Whitbread. “If you compare us with other branded hotel chains, we know we come out on top every time with surveys and Trivago, Trip Advisor, and other hospitality ratings websites.”
Authentication plays a major role in creating a positive customer experience. Whitbread manages eight different brands across multiple domains, so enabling customers to move seamlessly from one to the next is critical. For the Premier Inn brand, working with Auth0 represented an opportunity to provide added value to both the company and its customers.
“[When] people come to the website direct, we ask them to enter their registration or their details,” says Goodwin. “Obviously, everybody’s on different social media platforms. The ability to opt in and do progressive profiling, all those kind of things that Auth0 is already offering us is something that we want. We’ve found that the more people that we have sign up to accounts, their average booking value increases.”
Goodwin explains that streamlining authentication allows customers to get the most out of Premier Inn with minimal effort. With just one click, customers can authenticate into the system and enjoy the personalized benefits of a Premier Inn account.
“It’s that one-click process,” says Goodwin. “You shouldn’t have to write War and Peace every time you want to register an account. It stops people doing it… I want to book a room, press one click, booked, done, and I can get on with the rest of my day. Once we’ve got people logged in and in the system, we can then speed up their journey and make sure it’s the best journey for them.”
It took just three months to onboard Auth0 into the Premier Inn platform, and Whitbread has expanded their use of the Auth0 platform over time.
“When we initially started with our relationship with Auth0, we just used the bare minimum of functionality,” says Goodwin. “The use of Auth0 gave us that session persistence so our customers didn’t have to log in each time they jumped through the domain. I think it was very straightforward, we had some [initial] support from the service team to make sure it was there. And even when we moved to our domain, it was quite a seamless process to make sure that it was done smoothly without any break in service.”
“I started to find out how [Auth0] was being used, and I thought, there’s a lot more we could be doing with it,” adds Andrew Howes, lead enterprise architect, Whitbread. “And that’s kind of where we’re leading… There’s a lot more opportunity that something like Auth0 can offer us.”
Even as the relationship grows and Premier Inn adds new functionality to its identity solution, the reliability of Auth0 has not wavered. Premier Inn has experienced zero service outages since signing on with Auth0.
“When I arrived [at Whitbread] and I heard that Auth0 was in place already, I breathed a sigh of relief,” says Howes. “When you’re running a £1.2 billion website, to not have to worry about whether your authentication platform’s operating, that’s a load off a CIO’s mind.”
Auth0, a global leader in Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS), provides thousands of customers in every market sector with the only identity solution they need for their web, mobile, IoT, and internal applications. Its extensible platform seamlessly authenticates and secures more than 2.5 billion logins per month, making it loved by developers and trusted by global enterprises. The company’s U.S. headquarters in Bellevue, WA, and additional offices in Buenos Aires, London, Tokyo, and Sydney, support its global customers that are located in 70+ countries.