These are unprecedented times we’re living in. We’ve all experienced the effects of the pandemic and amidst this fear and uncertainty, global travel patterns have changed drastically over the year due to international travel restrictions, nation-wide lockdowns and people choosing to stay at home under self-quarantine- in Europe alone, occupancy rates dropped by almost 82% during the month of May 2020.
Many hotels aren’t getting the sort of business that they’re used to. This drastic change has resulted in numerous revenue challenges in the hospitality industry, but fear not, there are signs of recovery. With strong preventive measures being sanctioned, many places around the world are opening up to travel again.
Revenue management for the hospitality industry is now more focused on generating demand than about selling rooms. Competition is higher than ever with discounted prices everywhere, and hotels are competing to sell each and every room.
Revenue Challenges In The Hospitality Industry
In order to find a solution, it is imperative that we understand the problem. We also have to keep in mind, that even though most places are open for travel, we are still in the middle of a pandemic— this means that demand has decreased significantly but hotels still need to do their utmost to ensure staff and customer safety. According to a survey by Oracle during May 2020, 60% of respondents said that they would be more comfortable staying in a hotel that has increased frequency of cleaning and disinfecting, while 39% said that they would prefer places with social distancing measures put into place in guest areas and other public spaces within the hotel.
Factors that were vital to the hospitality industry revenue pre-pandemic included upcoming travel trends, disposable income, increased business from online sources, ease of transactions through internet banking, web reputation of hotels, and many more. During the current global health crisis, many of these avenues are no longer viable. We need to throw out old strategies and bring in newer, more innovative and reassuring ways to attract business.
Here are a few tips that would help you boost revenue without incurring any additional costs.
A great way for hotels to boost revenue is by upselling. An excellent way to upsell during pre-pandemic times would have been by offering spa services or a free meal. Remember, nothing sells as well as a good deal but make sure to keep in mind all post-pandemic concerns while creating packages.
Use the services and facilities in your hotel to make an offer that guests can’t refuse. Create various unique deals to help upsell to individuals or groups during the booking process. You can offer to
- Upgrade their room for a small additional charge
- Add perks like a bottle of wine, a service or breakfast to their upgraded room
- Provide a discount with a time limit
- Create packages that are attractive to a post-covid world like offering contactless services
- Provide discounts or additional perks for booking more than one room
- Give returning guests a rewards program
In addition, you can also set a minimum number of bookable nights or bookable rooms to encourage guests to stay for longer durations.
Finding prospective guests or even encouraging guests to return may seem like a daunting task; however, with the right upselling strategy it is certainly possible. Always keep in mind what your guests would want in terms of upsells—making the right offers, deals or upgrades at a nominal rate can not only increase potential customers, but it will also encourage people to pick your hotel for future visits as well.
Focus On Millennial Travellers
An article in the New York Post stated that Millennials are the most eager to be able to explore and travel again. All of the pandemic restrictions have only made people miss the outdoors more, and it’s very likely that with the relaxing of these constraints, many people will be back on the road again. Millennials have become a key travelling segment as they have demonstrated a stronger love for experiences over material goods. The cheaper airfare has encouraged more avid travellers to go ahead with their travel plans.
It is also imperative to maintain safety measures and precautions while catering to and creating a plan for attracting millennial travellers. For example, according to a report by SayNTouch.com, 90% of millennials value authenticity over appearances. Establishing a tech-friendly method of interacting with guests—social media presence, online booking, personalised messages, mobile-first guest experience and 24/7 service are a few ways to appeal to these types of travellers.
Target Corporate Travellers
Face-to-face interactions are crucial for important business deals to go well. In spite of the various virtual alternatives, many companies still see this method as crucial to meeting their objectives. Corporate travel segments are, therefore, likely to recover first.
According to a survey by Booking.com, almost 72% of Indian travellers extended their business trips in 2018. It is, therefore, necessary to offer the right amenities and packages to be able to attract the corporate traveller.
Ensure that you have packages and amenities to accommodate their needs— offer special room rates or customer loyalty programs, free and strong Wi-Fi connection, a designated workspace with comfortable desks and chairs, or even something as simple as ample power outlets. Create packages to host corporate events which also provides you with the opportunity to showcase your facilities and quality service to potential guests.
According to a survey by Citron, only 8% of respondents reported that they would be ok checking in and out at the hotel’s front desk. This survey emphasises that guests want a contactless and safe experience, and would likely pick a hotel that offers these services. The same survey found that around 62% of respondents would prefer to check-in and out through a mobile app.
A few contactless solutions include:
- Mobile app for check-in and check out
- QR code and app to access the restaurant menu and place an order
- A contactless solution to receive customer feedback
- Contactless valet services
- Contact tracing for guests and employees
Contactless service has become the need of the hour and helps guests feel safe and comfortable within your establishment. It is, therefore, a mandatory upgrade.
Turn To A Reliable System That Offers A Complete Hotel Solution
Integrating multiple systems from pre-booking to post-checkout can become an expensive affair financially, in terms of resources and also in terms of guest-experience. A reliable property management system has the power to deliver exceptional value and seamless experience to its clients’ customers and therefore significantly boost business.
Hotelogix PTE offers a 360-degree hospitality solution which will not only deliver value to its clients but also offers a completely seamless experience. It is a robust cloud-based PMS, with integrated Channel Manager, Automated Revenue Management, Booking Engine, Reputation Management, Guest-facing contactless solutions for feedback, check-in/check-out, and concierge services to offer a full-stack solution for hotels across the world.
We at Hotelogix can empathise with the stress and grief that this situation has caused you, and to emphasize our aim of being your trusted partner and to help hotels cope and revive their business, we are offering value at a price point that aligns with the current state of the industry. You can now get all the benefits of the Hotelogix PMS and all the necessary tools to bring your hotel business back on track at a discounted price of 85%. We also work in close association with you to ensure that your occupancy levels go up and stay up.