Don’t you think the hospitality industry has come a long way in the last two decades? The way hotels do business has dramatically evolved due to technological advances and shifting customer behavior. From small independent hotels to big global chains, businesses are actively promoting themselves online to attract the attention of a large number of digital-savvy travelers. As a result, if hotels want to boost their visibility and expand their reach, they must stay on top of technology. That’s when it becomes important to optimize OTA distribution.
When it comes to making vacation plans, most people today use online travel agencies (OTA). If they want to compare prices or read reviews, OTA in the hospitality industry has a stronghold.
That doesn’t indicate you can sit back and wait for the commissions to reflect on your credit card! You can increase direct bookings and develop relationships with your industry partners by identifying those travelers and how to optimize your OTA distribution.
What are some strategies to improve your OTA distribution, and why should you partner with OTA booking?
It’s becoming more challenging to be where the guest is as hotel distribution impacts more stages of the guest journey, such as researching, booking, reviewing, and sharing data of a hotel stay as the channels and technologies that guests use at each stage continue to grow.
Not only is it challenging to discover all of the accessible channels, but maintaining your pricing and inventory across all of them becomes increasingly difficult.
With these tips, you can optimize OTA distribution while generating more revenue.
1. Expand Visibility
Hotels should target the outlets that will provide the latest and largest sources of visibility. Hoteliers may establish a successful distribution strategy by focusing on the channels favored by consumers, such as OTAs preferred for hotel booking by most passengers around the world, and implementing a practical approach that leverages their extensive worldwide visibility.
2. Reach New Market
Identifying the right OTAs can help hotels target market segments and discover new sectors they weren’t reaching before, whether fresh feeder markets, business or tourists, or new demographics. Ensure to design suitable packages and experiences to advertise to these new segments and personas.
Try out new OTAs to see if they can help you break into new markets. Try out those new markets to see if you can find any hidden gems. When targeting worldwide guests, the OTAs’ language support is extremely crucial.
3. Dynamic Packages
Many OTAs don’t simply sell hotel rooms overnight; they also offer guests a chance to opt for dynamic packages, which combine a hotel stay with a flight or vehicle hire for a single fee. This packaged pricing allows hotels to choose to offer different prices without compromising solo pricing strategies or rate parity for room-only stays.
4. Group Canceling
Hotels with OTA connections can respond rapidly to unforeseen events like large group cancellations by boosting distribution to large groups of customers and participating in promotions across various OTAs.
- Personalize it by using the customization features of OTAs to target specific guests. Instead, you can use specialized OTAs to offer specific visitor types personalized services such as beach vacations, golf packages, cycling trips, yoga retreats, and many more.
- Expenses of participation – Look at the hotel options provided by OTAs. Many companies provide many participation options, so the perception that high participation prices are not necessarily accurate. When analyzing the performance of an existing channel, the cost of distribution should be taken into account.
5. Use Each OTA’s Targeting Skills in Your Favor
Guests might be targeted with discounts or packages depending on the OTA’s unique value proposition. Recognize how different OTAs function inside booking windows and the impact they can have on different booking durations:
- Some OTAs excel in booking further in advance, while others assist in filling shorter stays. As a result, rates vary depending on demand and proximity to the expected arrival.
- Some channels, such as leading OTAs, will successfully cover the entire sales cycle, while others may serve a place or experience that will often see visitors book a little further out. Others specialize in last-minute reservations and market themselves as such.
6. Understand OTA Technology
Not all OTAs are made equal, and the strategies they use to communicate might have an impact on your ability to profit from the unique capabilities your hotel sells. For example, who is good at handling promotions? Who is the master of mobile? Is there any support for pricing based on length of stay? Are there any extras available? Determine which features and capabilities are essential to your revenue management strategy and whether the OTA hotel management engine can accommodate them.
7. Use the Right Integrations
Integrating OTAs with your hotel revenue management software gives you a far greater reach, allowing you to engage businesses and travelers at all levels of their experience. As a result, it’s essential that you make the appropriate integrations:
Connect your channel manager to your website: Seasonal demand and shifting customer tastes affect both hotel availability and pricing. Maintaining consistent room prices across many web channels is impossible without a channel manager.
Hotel revenue management software must integrate with a channel manager to use Artificial Intelligence to handle pricing adjustments. The integrated system connects over 100 sites throughout the Internet, allowing you to post real-time room prices and collect OTA bookings.
It also includes a cloud-based property management system (PMS) that combines with the channel manager and pricing system to update and refresh room details across OTAs in real-time consistently. This is the most effective and smooth way to keep your OTA marketing plan fresh to boost occupancy and sales.
Also, if you don’t have a connected hotel management system, you’ll have to manually change your inventory or room if there’s a cancellation; otherwise, your room will show as booked, resulting in a missed opportunity.
If you have a channel manager-hotel revenue management integrated system, on the other hand, your inventory is updated in real-time and dynamic pricing is set, ensuring that you don’t miss out on any possibilities.
8. Create a Mobile-Friendly Hotel Website
You’ve probably heard that having a mobile-friendly website is essential to your hotel’s success.
Today’s tourists research their travel options using a variety of devices and platforms. The accessibility to the Internet and the affordability of smartphones have transformed the way consumers search for and book hotels.
If your site and booking engine are mobile-friendly, you can convert OTA bookings into direct bookings, boosting your hotel’s revenue. As a result, you’ll need a hotel website that works dynamically and effectively on tablets, smartphones, laptops, and other devices.
Optimize OTA Distribution With AxisRoom
AxisRooms allows you to spread your inventory on 160+ OTAs all around the world, making it simple to manage all of your inventories across several platforms.
With these nine tips mentioned above, you can optimize the use of OTAs in the hotel industry.
Collaborate with AxisRooms to get the best deals for your hotel.