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SiteMinder research finds direct bookings present the biggest challenge for hotels of all sizes

  Posted in Direct Bookings  Last updated 11/05/2017

Hotel Industry Challenges

Managing a hotel is akin to a juggling act. Hoteliers are constantly switching between tasks, projects, and priorities – everything from revenue management to delivering a great guest experience.

New research from SiteMinder has revealed what keeps hoteliers, all around the world, awake at night.

SiteMinder asked hoteliers, both independents and groups, to rank the biggest challenges they believe their properties face – and the results were fascinating.

Chapter three inside ‘SiteMinder’s Global Hotel Business Index 2017: A visual look at financial plans, focus points, and future predictions’ asked hoteliers to choose from a matrix of issues –

  • Driving guests to your website to book direct
  • Predicting market trends for dynamic pricing and revenue management
  • Attracting quality team members and retaining them for longer
  • Maintaining guest relationships and loyalty
  • Balancing the demands of your property
  • Competing with the sharing economy i.e. Airbnb

Driving direct bookings was ranked as the biggest challenge for hoteliers of all sizes globally – with a ranking of 68%.

Surprisingly, hoteliers said they feel the least challenged by the sharing economy and the competition this industry disruptor presents.

What did hoteliers tell SiteMinder about their biggest challenges?

Hoteliers were enthusiastic about offloading their thoughts in this part of SiteMinder’s survey. They expanded on the rankings with comments covering wide ground.

More than 120 insights made the final cut and here’s what hoteliers had to say about the areas of their business that give them sleepless nights:

“Once you are in a certain place, you just can’t move out or take the hotel with you somewhere else. There is the challenge of helping your town or city become or maintain its status as an attractive tourist destination.”

“Creating a revenue stream through the winter months when tourist numbers drop off. Need to creatively capture more of the local tourists through winter town-wide events.”

“Getting more TripAdvisor reviews. Satisfied customers don’t always leave a review. Unsatisfied people love to complain online.”

What’s the SiteMinder perspective on the findings?

Chapter three took a deep dive into the issues that hoteliers face on a property scale and driving direct bookings is the biggest uphill battle, according to the results.

Maintaining a handle on market trends to support dynamic pricing and predictive revenue management was ranked second – with competition from the sharing economy ranked least challenging.

Hoteliers clearly want to know more about the business health of their local market and using technology is an affordable way to do so. A room pricing intelligence tool that can monitor when competitors are close to maximum occupancy is a great example of technology helping to alleviate daily pressures.

Other chapters in the report include –

  • Achieving Your Hotel’s Business Goals
    What are your biggest business focuses at your hotel in 2017?
  • Planning Your Hotel’s Finances
    Which areas are you likely to distribute the largest proportion of budget in the next 12 months?
  • Understanding Your Industry’s Issues
    Thinking about the broader sector, what do you believe are the biggest issues facing hotels?
  • Recognising Your Motivations
    As a hotelier, what are you most passionate about during the day-to-day?
  • Predicting Your Hotel’s Future Technology
    What developments do you think will accelerate in our industry over the next 10 years?


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