We at AxisRooms have always been helping hotels in every possible way - from adding new features to our products to organizing industry events with other globally renowned solutions providers. Our ultimate aim is to educate and empower hotels like yours to stay competitive in today's rapidly evolving business environment.
And in our quest to do so, we recently organized a series of hospitality industry events across multiple cities in India - Hotel Revenue Summit in association with Booking.com. We kicked off the first edition in Kochi, Kerala, on 23 March 2023. Over hundreds of hoteliers and experts from OTAs attended it. This blog summarizes the panel discussion about Changing Landscape of Online Travel.
So, let's roll.
The state of travel and online booking
Domestic travel picked up its pace right after the pandemic, which worked well for the Indian hotel industry. Things are now looking even better with international travel resuming. In this context, online booking plays a significant role as most accommodation reservations happen over Online Travel Agencies (OTAs), hotel websites, and social media pages. Now this offers plenty of opportunities for you to get more online bookings. While you can work with several leading OTAs for indirect bookings, you can also adopt a booking engine to generate incremental direct bookings.
How to sell more online
While selling online, the trick lies in selling your property's USP. How is your property different from your competition, offering more or less the same services at around the same price point? To get ahead, you need to concentrate on what you are showing your audience.
Here are a few valuable tips:
- Regularly update your property's OTA profile with high-resolution images and top-notch content.
- Closely work with your OTA marketing manager.
- Promote special facilities that nobody else offers.
- Pay attention to the surrounding attractions.
- Make sure to highlight positive guest feedback and ratings.
Similarly, you can follow the tips mentioned below to generate more direct bookings:
- Integrate a booking into your hotel website and social media pages.
- Here, too, pay attention to your hotel images and descriptions.
- Highlight USPs and the uniqueness you offer.
- Run promotions and offers
- Highlight your industry recognitions
Most importantly, you need to showcase the unique experience that your guests will witness if they stay with you. Remember this - they are also looking for value for their money.
What about revenue management?
It should be only about selling more rooms. Instead, it should be about selling the right room at the best rate to the right guest at the right time. Your objective here should be to increase occupancy and revenue.
Yes, this is all about revenue management. A revenue management tool is one of the most operationally imperative hotel solutions. You can achieve this with a smart revenue management solution that can dynamically optimize your room rates based on occupancy and demand at your hotel. Today's intelligent solutions can help you with automated rate recommendations considering the local area demand and supply and your competition's rates.
How does technology help?
We have seen a spike in technology adoption among hotels after the pandemic. It happened as focus shifted towards gaining operational automation with a reduced workforce.
For example, a channel manager solution can automatically update your rates and availability across OTAs in real-time. This automation helps you save time and improves productivity. It also eliminates errors and double bookings that could have led to losing business opportunities. Technology is also a key element when it comes to marketing your hotel. It helps you to segment your audience and run targeted marketing campaigns to reach out to them.
The road to success lies in implementing the right technology across all stages of your hotel operations - covering front office to back office and everything in between. However, while doing so, educate your staff about how technology will help them work smarter and better.