Case Study: GraphCMS and Tropo

Tackling tomorrow’s traveller needs with a Headless CMS for Travel and Tourism.

Case Study: GraphCMS and Tropo

GraphCMS was an easy-choice for our engineering team: small learning curve, rapid development, future-proofness, and that it works perfectly with our frontend frameworks React and Redux.

Gunther Stolbrink
Gunther StolbrinkProduct Owner at Tropo

Tropo is an online travel agency (OTA) focused on both affordable, and premium all-inclusive package tours, last minute trips, and hotel-only deals. More than 200 million holiday offers are available daily. In addition to its own consumer-facing travel portal, Tropo also has a business-to-business arm for powering the online presence of other companies in travel. Customers like Eurowings Holidays have enjoyed Tropo’s services.

The project

In a major rebranding and re-platforming initiative, Tropo is revamping their online presence and building a completely new travel portal - using GraphCMS as a Headless CMS for Travel.

Deciding to transition away from a tech stack including Typo3, “a lot of PHP”, and AngularJS, Tropo has chosen a more contemporary approach with React, Redux, and GraphQL as their stack, and GraphCMS to power the content for their new website. External databases like TravelTainment and Amadeus provide the company with pricing and service data about hotels and flights, empowering their booking engine to help thousands of travelers fulfill their trips. Additionally, each trip is enriched with location information, distance, and weather data from other services. All this information is dynamically packaged and cached in a CDN for quick delivery to users.

GraphCMS powers all editorial and marketing content, including SEO-optimized landing pages, promotional campaigns, destination information, corporate information, FAQs, menus, and programmatically generated content. Using a headless CMS enhances the editorial team’s output and efficiency, ensuring an accelerated ROI on Tropo’s SEO and performance marketing efforts.

Uniting dynamic holiday offers content from multiple APIs with the marketing content served via GraphCMS, is not only a state-of-the-art product architecture, but more importantly, it ensures a powerfully integrated user experience.

According to Gunther Stolbrink, Product Owner, the three major trends in the travel and hospitality industry that motivated the re-platforming and the architectural choices of Tropo are:

  • Increased competition for organic search traffic requiring better technical SEO;
  • Need for better user analytics;
  • “Not simply mobile-first but mobile-only focus”.

Attracting users with the best content that is served fast on any channel is an effective marketing strategy that keeps Customer Acquisition Costs (CAC) down. Understanding the user’s buying behavior determines crucial marketing and product development decisions: where do users discover a trip, where do they prefer to buy, are they buying alone or for a group of people.

Where should marketing budgets be spent? What type of content should be created? What platforms should be optimized? These are all valid concerns that Tropo seeks to tackle with their transition.

The new stack enables Tropo to address these key challenges effectively. Opting for frameworks like React and Redux, the company is able to offer an uplifted frontend design bundled with new features to both the end consumer, and business customers. Using GraphCMS to delivers content via a GraphQL API ensures the best performance on mobile – even when network connections are bad.

The editorial team has complete independence when creating pages, campaigns, and promotions, with the websites’ build doing the heavy-lifting to ensure that content is correctly optimized and delivered rapidly and correctly, with the highest performance benchmarks in mind.

The company’s product team has ensured that new customers and digital channels are set up incredibly fast by making graphic containers, content schemas and business-logic reusable across all digital channels for all customers. Designing for modularity and reusability are the cornerstone principles in Tropo’s clean, and modern architecture.


Why GraphCMS?

Typo3 is a monolithic system that despite its virtues in the previous decades, is not optimized for a mobile-first applications, multiple channels and modern frontend frameworks. Choosing against staying with the legacy system was mainly provoked by its very steep learning curve, the high maintenance costs and the big challenge to find developers with experience with the system or willingness to work with it.

What Mattered most to Tropo when choosing GraphCMS?

  • GraphCMS's incredible compatibility with React.
  • The ability to embrace agile methodologies by building fast and editing easily.
  • The ability to deliver content to any platform.

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