How to Increase Hotel Booking and Reservations?

Many guests now prefer to book their hotel stays online, and even the smallest hotel can’t ignore the fact that they need to have a strong online presence in order to stay competitive. As a hotel owner, it’s important for you to be on top of the latest technology to stay in business. In today’s thriving hospitality market, hotels need to be innovative in order to effectively meet the demands of their guests. So, since the trend is that more people are booking online, it’s necessary for you to utilize online booking tools and adapt a PMS (property management system) in order to improve your hotel booking and reservations.

To increase your online bookings, it’s important to have a strategy in place so that you can better keep track of your progress along the way. Research shows that having multiple channels by which people can book with you is the most effective way to increase your online revenue, so using online booking providers and hotel booking software can be a game-changer. 

1. Utilize Online Booking Providers

Using sites like booking.com and Airbnb can help you get your name out there to people who are looking to book a stay online, and who would not necessarily have found your hotel website directly. Having a listing on multiple online sites can help to increase your visibility and make your hotel seem like a trustworthy place to stay, as it is listed with the “big guys” everyone has heard of. Without these online booking providers, you’re basically hoping future guests will find your website easily, or maybe you’re hoping they’ll physically walk in to make a reservation in person. So, if you’re not making use of the online booking providers, it means you’re missing out on a serious revenue stream!

Online booking providers are there 24/7 meaning your hotel can take a reservation at any time, from anywhere. They also make payments easy, though you do often have to pay a commission to use their services. But it can be worth it. As more and more travelers book their reservations online, it’s absolutely necessary that your hotel has a strong online presence.

 

2. Invest In a Hotel PMS System with a Booking Engine

A Hotel property management system (PMS) that has integrated hotel booking software is a great way to increase your direct online bookings. A booking engine allows guests to book their stay directly on your website without having to go through an online travel agency (OTA). While OTAs are a great way to get your name out there to more people, when your bookings come through a third party, it can limit your revenue because of high commission charges. But when you use your own booking engine, there’s no commission fee to an OTA, which could have a big impact on your bottom line.

Many people view both OTAs and your website before they book their stay, so making bookings available directly on your website can increase the chances that when a guest is ready to book their stay, they will do it right on your site. And when a booking engine is integrated with your PMS, you can easily see and keep track of all your bookings in one place. A PMS system is an effective way to manage many aspects of your hotel business, so having your booking engine integrated with it means you no longer have to manually enter data.

3. Focus on Getting Customers to Return

In the hotel hospitality industry, attracting a new guest can cost up to five times more than retaining your existing customers. This means you should be spending a lot of your time and effort on convincing guests to return to your website and book another stay with you. Here are some things you can focus on to increase customer retention and online bookings. 

Identify priority guests based on their past bookings. 

In the same way you qualify new leads, qualify past guests as well. Identify VIPs based on how frequently they stay, how much they typically spend while they stay with you, and how recent their last stay was. These are customers you want to focus on retaining. Reach out to these guests with personalized communications.

Offer the right incentives.  

Your customer loyalty program should entice guests to book with you again, using valuable offers and rewards that they actually want. Points that add up to a free stay is the standard model, but discounts on local dining or attractions might get people more interested. Offer these discounts and incentives through email, and include a link back to your website to make booking another stay easy. 

Personalize your guest experience.

From the moment a guest hits that button to reserve their stay, everything you do should be about meeting their specific wants and needs with top-notch customer service. Identify and get to know your VIPs before they check-in, and make sure your staff works hard to let them know they’re important to you with personalized communication in the days leading up to their stay. And then once they arrive, greet them, add a favorite snack or beverage to their room, etc. Small gestures have big impacts when it comes to getting guests to remember their experience positively and return to stay with you again. Follow up with an email asking for an online review and a link to your website for when they’re ready to book their next stay. 

If you’re ready to take your online bookings to the next level, it’s time to get started with the strategies detailed above. Work to get listed on online booking sites, delight your guests so that they want to return, and find a property management system with a built-in booking engine that works for you. If you’re not sure which hotel property management system is right for you, contact us. protel offers a complete set of hotel PMS systems and solutions which can help manage your end-to-end hotel business.

Which software is used in the hotel industry?

In recent years, property management systems have increased their capabilities and moved beyond just completing basic front-office tasks. With a PMS system, you can now offer loyalty programs to guests, gather and analyze data, manage food and beverage services and more.

What is Hotel PMS and how does it words?

A property management system (PMS) is a set of software solutions that give hotel managers the ability to enhance their operating efficiency and deliver the best possible experiences for their guests. At its core, a property management system handles booking, check-in/check-out, room rates, billing, and performance analytics.

What are the functionalities of Hotel PMS?

 

  • Takes reservations from all connected sources and puts these dates into a central calendar. This updates your availability on all your channels so that you’ll never have to go through the headache of accidentally overbooking guests.
  • Helps you manage room rates
  • Provides you with a way to handle room and bed assignments, and room
    inventory.
  • Takes requests for booking cancellations or modifications or room upgrades
  • Optimizing housekeeping so that you’re always sure your staff is working efficiently.
  • Managing amenities like food service and lets guests charge services directly to their room so that all charges simply appear on their final bill.
  • Reporting on the statistics of your hotel.
  • Managing payment gateways to make billing easier.
Why is PMS so important?

In recent years, property management systems have increased their capabilities and moved beyond just completing basic front-office tasks. With a PMS system, you can now offer loyalty programs to guests, gather and analyze data, manage food and beverage services and more.

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