8 Steps to Instantly Increase Your Room Bookings
At Increase The Bookings, we work one-to-one with property owners throughout the UK, Ireland, and Europe, and we always face the same obstacle at the beginning, “The Owners.”
Owners of hotels seem to have blinkers on when it comes to assessing their online presence. Why? Online marketing ain’t their bag, it’s not what got them into the accommodation industry, and it’s certainly not what excites them to get out of bed in the morning.
At Increase The Bookings we are thick-skinned, we expect the objections and growls at the start, but we know, after the initial growls, owners will come to acknowledge that change is needed if they want to increase their hotel’s sales online.
Below you will find the initial 8 steps that you will have to take if you want to increase your hotel’s room bookings and to maximize your profits through your hotel website booking engine.
We have put them in order of importance which will allow you to work on them one at a time until you complete number 8.
P.S If you feel that you haven’t got the time or expertise then please free to contact us direct.
Your Online Presence
- Your Hotels Website: Hotel owners have to step back and take a very long look at what their potential guests see when they first visit their property online. They need to ask themselves these vital questions. Is their website inviting? Does their website represent what is going on inside and outside of their property? Is their website selling the real benefits and features of their property? Does their website up-sell and cross-sell to maximise their turnover and profits? And last but not least, would they stay there if they were visiting the hotel’s website for the first time?
- Hotel Booking Engine: A hotel booking engine is an application on a hotel’s website and social media pages that capture and processes direct online reservations. Booking engines work by plugging into your property’s website, which allows you to secure online direct bookings as well as selling extra incentives to your guests before and during their stay. Your hotel’s booking engine should reflect and mirror your property’s website, keeping your guest’s journey seamless, painless, and enjoyable, during, and after they have parted with their card details. We honestly believe that we offer one of the best booking engines on the market. Have a look here and make your own mind up. You won’t be disappointed.
Increasing Your Direct Bookings
- Metasearch Engines: Now you have to maximise and drive increased traffic to your shiny new website and booking engine. Meta Search Engines seem to have gone over many hoteliers heads, they seem to have missed the massive opportunities that the likes of Google Hotel, trivago, Tripadvisor, and KAYAK offer. Metasearch engines drive direct traffic to your website (you have now sorted), they are far cheaper than OTAs for room bookings, and, they allow you, the hotelier, to have the full contact details of your coming guest that will enable you to up-sell and cross-sell to your newly booked clients. Now we are talking, and now you will be reaping the full rewards of direct room bookings!
- Social Media: Your cheapest route to direct room bookings, customer engagement, and a sense of community belonging. Do you remember the old days when you needed a plumber, hotel, dentist, etc? Where did you look? Was it Yellow Pages? If you didn’t see the business in your Yellow Pages, you would automatically have chosen someone else. Social Media isn’t just about engaging with potential clients. Social Media is about being found by potential guests that are looking directly for you. If you are not engaging and being constantly active through Facebook, Twitter, etc, then your potential guests will jump over to your competition, who are showcasing their product and services. Social Media isn’t just about being found, it’s about being active and showing that you care. It’s vital for your direct room bookings, at zero percent commission.
- OTAs: Oh Dear! I can feel the heat in your room! But are the OTAs really that bad? Or is it more down to you than them? OTAs aren’t your enemy, they can drive thousands of guests to your hotel every month, and when you work the OTAs to your advantage, you will find that your direct room bookings will increase dramatically through their listings of your property. If you have covered steps one and two, you will find that your direct room bookings will rise through OTAs. But, you also have to make sure that your listing on the OTAs is backing up your own online image. Professionally listed hotels on OTAs will outperform other hotels that haven’t been listed to the recommended 100% by the OTAs.
- Hotel Channel Manager: With the right channel manager in place for your hotel, combined with our promo manager. The sky is the limit. Click HERE and see the list of benefits that our channel manager provides to all our clients. Why? Because once again, we honestly believe that it’s the best in the industry.
7.Email Database Marketing: You have to invest your time or your money into direct email database marketing. Do you want to increase your sales? Do you want to have a constant weekly flow of instant revenue? Then learn or hire someone that will work your database.
Database marketing from your own database is probably one of the most valuable sales funnels that a hotel can ever acquire. Once hoteliers master talking to and inviting past guests, it can single-handed pull a hotel out of obscurity and into a new realm of increased sales.
Our experience has turned hotels with an average of 40% room occupancy, into the high end of 80%. Email marketing for hotels will result in higher sales with a lower client acquisition cost, without the help of advertising and marketing. It’s a powerful tool, bringing in instant results and instant cash flow.
8. Make It Happen: By the time that you read this, hopefully COVID-19 has come and gone. You may still have the scars, but you are probably stronger and wiser for what happened in early 2020. Make it happen, turn your property into a booking magnet that drives direct bookings through your well oiled website and generate sales at a fraction of the past, pre-COVID-19.
Contact Increase The Bookings
We hope that the above helps you in your search for creating more direct room bookings through OTAs, metasearch engines, social media, walk ins, your hotel channel manager, hotel website, and direct room bookings via your own branded booking engine.
Always put yourself in your customer’s shoes and make sure that your not too busy chasing bookings and forgetting about the most important thing – Your Hotel Guests!
Contact us and speak with one of our Marketing Specialists today about what we can do to increase your hotel’s direct room bookings. firstname.lastname@example.org