Our team met on the road and specifically, in RVs, as we were traveling across the US. We all loved finding awesome campsites to stay in, but the process of actually booking those sites were a huge pain. With a collective background in software, OTA’s and payment processing, we decided to start Nomad Reservations to focus on improving the reservation experience in outdoor hospitality.
Solving the Problem
The original idea was to launch a hotels.com equivalent for campgrounds. However, in 2017 we visited over 100 campgrounds and we realized that many parks were not using any kind of online booking system at all. Building a site that brought together all the bookable campsites was only possible if there was a central API to tie into. We came to the conclusion that to solve this problem, we’d first need to focus on getting more campgrounds using online reservations, which required us to build our property management application that allowed parks to take online reservations.
A Fragmented Industry
As we spoke with other companies in outdoor hospitality, we began to see a theme of fragmentation. For instance, there were review sites to find parks, but nowhere could you find and book your site within one central experience. To help solve this, we built a white label version of our Campground Booking listings in which tourism associations and outdoor brands can use to turn their review sites into booking sites.
During January of 2018 our property management system went into beta with a few select parks. Over the course of the year we took more than 3,000 camper bookings and worked closely with campgrounds to improve our property management application. Our focus was not on expansion, but on first creating a product that truly supported campgrounds at the operational level.
Growing Our Product Offering
At the start of 2019, CampgroundBooking is now powering reservations to more than 30 campgrounds with over 50,000 monthly users viewing listings across our partner portals. We’re expanding our product offering to include a white label trip planner and guides for our partners, which will allow them to drive more visitors to campground listings.