It is sometimes reffered to be our worst best friend. What is it? Booking.com. The booking engine that have helped many hotels acquire new guests and fill their capacity in times of sluggish seasons. Is yours among them, too? I assume many of you just nodded. And most of you will also nod when I say that the margins you have to pay to Booking.com for provided customers are significant for your hotel. Because they simply are.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t say Booking.com is our enemy because the opposite is the truth. Who would otherwise make guests to come to your hotel, right? However, it is sure thing you cannot rely on the profit you make in case you have to pay somebody who did your job for you, and it is normal. But you should be able to get those “missing” money from somewhere else, too. And this post will teach you how to do it!
Upselling and repeated sales are the key!
There is no nuclear science behind it. Common sense would tell you that if you want to catch up with your missing revenue, you have to sell more or sell more often. So make sure that once the guest is accommodated in your hotel, you will do your best to make him/her spend as much as he/she can and make them spend their valuable money again in short amount of time. So you should either focus on selling services and products your hotel offers or make the guest come again without use of booking engine. And here’s how you can accomplish it.
Note: We follow the rule that making one guest purchase twice is much easier than generate two guests.
1. Promote your offers with mobile application
Do you think your guests check all flyers you printed? Did you print them in all languages your guests speak, anyway? Don’t be naive. However, you can be sure they certainly use smartphones or tablets and what is important, they enjoy using them.
If you are able to connect with your relevant guests in real-time via hotel mobile application, you increase the likelihood of generating more revenues from your services. Use push notifications to announce your special offers, news, events so your guests don’t miss anything they might enjoy. Make them purchase it. And as promotional as it sounds, it simply works!
2. Follow up your guests to make them come again!
This one sounds easy but you woudn’t believe how many hotels forget about this simple step. When your guest leave, thank him/her for the stay. Check their purchase history in your hotel (you can do so with use of your mobile application or other CRM), feedback they provided and craft personalized messages (and offers, too) that will get their attention.
If I were in your shoes, I would take care of the most satisfied guests, first. The probability they will react to your offer, return to your hotel or evangelize your hotel among their friends (more in the third part), is relatively high. Afterwards, I would reach the guests who were not satisfied in order to change their attitude towards my hotel.
3. Make evangelists among your guests
Previous two steps were pretty elementary and I am afraid this step will be no different. Take care of your guests to make them feel like they are in the better place than at home. If you accomplish it, they will be glad to flaunt with their experience among their friends. You just have to give them proper space to accomplish it with ease.
Provide nice (or funny) pictures that are easy to share, pre-defined messages, QR codes, photowalls and similar stuff that will help you spread. Don’t forget that all comments, likes and shares work like social proof – the vote for your quality. The quality is the music people want to hear.
You are now armed with 3 quick tips you can put in place immediately. Which of them are you going to try? Do you have any tricks we did not mention and were helpful in you hotel? If so, don’t hesitate to empower us!