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Hotel management apps: Guide to the best hotel apps

  Posted in Resources  Last updated 3/06/2024

What are hotel management apps?

Hotel management apps are software tools that make the everyday running of your property easier. They enable you to automate processes and expand your capabilities to achieve business goals.

Some of the tasks they’ll help your hotel with include making more revenue per booking, improving guest feedback and review scores, improving guest communication and experience, boosting direct bookings, and more.

With so much to think about as a modern hotelier, including how to respond to growing customer needs while maximising revenue and efficiency, you need to find solutions that make running a property much easier.

Hotel management apps are one way of both increasing performance at your business and generally making life easier. This blog will tell you everything you need to know.

Table of contents

Why is app technology important for your hotel?

Hotel management apps are becoming extremely important for your hotel to deliver on its promise of quality. As the hotel and travel industries attempt to wrestle back control post-COVID-19, it’s important to do everything possible to get back on top.

Your guests expect a personalised and convenient experience, and apps allow you to adapt to this growing need by prioritising data, technology, and connectivity.

They improve your ability to know what guests want and to provide the appropriate services. The tradition of limiting service and interaction to just your hotel staff and physical property is being outgrown by the ability of technology to automate and make many processes easier for guests.

With changed behaviours, altered preferences, and new expectations from guests, some hotels may need to rethink their approach, or look for help they hadn’t considered previously.

The world of hotel apps offers a wealth of opportunity to do just that.

What are the benefits of using hotel management apps?

Hoteliers around the world of all sizes believe apps and mobile will dominate the guest booking experience over the next 10 years. Hotel apps are often designed to complement and enhance the way you attract, serve, and gain value from your guests.

This might include direct booking plug-in apps, such as Triptease, that reduce your reliance on online travel agencies (OTAs) by giving your booking engine greater functionality. Or it might be an app that helps guests self-serve, via remote check-in for example.

A full list of how you can use hotel management apps at your property include:

Guest experience and communication 

Your guests are not just money symbols, they have the potential to be brand ambassadors. Apps can help you keep on top of communication and personalisation.

Check-in and contactless experience

Use apps to automate and make the check-in process safe. The more time-efficient travellers become, the more time-efficiency they crave. The more convenience they’re offered, the more they want. Check-in and check-out are one of the most important places where this can be improved.

Upselling

Any action you take at your hotel should benefit the guest first and foremost but if you can find ways to increase revenue too, all the better. The timing, tone, and regularity with which you upsell is the key to the success of your efforts. Make sure your offers to guests are appropriate in this new era – such as a room with no ‘neighbours’.

Reputation management

Without an established and positive reputation on the web your hotel won’t capture the amount of reservations you need to run a successful business. There are apps that can take the hassle out of the entire process.

Transport services

Convenience, safety, punctuality – all are extremely important to guests and are only growing more so. Part of the guest experience with your hotel is travelling to your location. Many apps can help you organise services for your guests and keep in touch with them while in transit.

Additionally, using apps to help manage your property will ultimately make you more efficient and give you greater flexibility when it comes to technology integration, as well as more access to reports and analysis.

Expand your horizons with SiteMinder’s app store

SiteMinder offers dozens of integrated app partners to ensure that your software suite matches your unique hotel needs.

Learn more

8 reasons why a hotel management mobile app is a good idea

1. Hotel apps offer a more optimised booking experience

Once a traveller has downloaded your app they’ll have instant access to your hotel information and be able to book within a couple of thumb-touches if they choose to. This will save time on both ends and give your guest a more positive experience.

2. An app will help you track more guest data

An app will give you easier and more concentrated access to guest information and behaviour traits across the booking journey and during their stay. Data is one of the most powerful tools at your disposal when developing pricing or marketing strategies because it allows you to make accurate predictions and informed decisions.

3. You can maintain brand awareness for your hotel

Apps are one of the biggest and most used commodities on a person’s smartphone. If your app has been downloaded, a user will likely see it every day and have it top-of-mind when they choose to research accommodation.

4. Increase customer service at your property

Not only will your hotel app service a traveller during their booking stage but throughout their stay. They can use your app to order services, make purchases, choose upgrades, book appointments etc. and you’ll be instantly notified.

On the other hand, you can also quickly alert guests of special promotions and hot deals. This way all requests will be organised and automated, making life easier for everyone.

5. Integrate your communication with an app

Many different communication channels can be integrated with your app, including social media. It makes for an effective way to keep your guests updated about your property even if they’ve missed a Facebook post, tweet, or aren’t subscribed to a mailing list.

6. Create a more effective guest loyalty program

A hotel app will provide a better platform to house your guest loyalty program by allowing the guests to collect points for different actions they take on the app. They can then go to a hub to see their progress and potentially cash in their rewards instantly.

The app can also be used to collect reviews after or preferably during their stay. If you see a review that’s less than positive while the guest is still at the hotel you may be able to rectify it immediately and resolve the negative feedback.

7. Use your app to act as a tour guide

Similar to Google Trips, you can use your app to give guests the best advice about where to go to eat, what attractions to visit, and the best sights to see in the local area. You can combine this with an interactive map to ensure they don’t get lost and can better organise their itinerary.

8. Adapt to any language

Travellers will be able to set the app to the language they’re most comfortable with and any communication between guest and hotel will automatically translate back and forth so there is no misunderstanding, leading to a more enjoyable experience for both parties.

Image of a woman using a hotel management app

What are some of the best mobile apps for hotels?

For a full list of the best apps available for your hotel, visit SiteMinder’s Hotel App Store here.

Some examples of best-in-class apps include:

  • BeonpriceBeonprice, part of the BeonX solution, is a SiteMinder-integrated app that helps hotel to maximise hotel profitability via pricing recommendations based on patented SaaS AI technology, resulting in the HQI – a dedicated index that measures the overall quality of a hotel to know its competitive position.
  • DuveDuve’s platform is designed as an advanced guest communication solution, providing the opportunity to do online check ins, upsells, guest apps, and more. However, where it really shines is in review and reputation management, as Duve offers opt-in marketing and customised guest surveys for better, more actionable feedback. 
  • EasyWayEasyWay offers a number of solutions, including analytics, smart messaging, and upselling. It also provides a stellar contactless check in and check out service, offering a platform that’s tailored for medium to large hotels while still retaining customisability for your unique needs.  
  • BookboostBookboost is an app dedicated to improving communication with guests, empowering hoteliers to better segment their audience, create tailored, effective messaging, automate and schedule key communications, and keep track of all guest journeys and messages in a single inbox. 
  • GuestPro CRMThe GuestPro CRM is a marketing powerhouse, allowing users to create automated email sequences based on in-depth guest information, including courtesy emails, transactional emails, reminders, and marketing campaigns.
  • ChekinChekin provides multiple top-to-bottom solutions for automating the check in process, but most notable is its capabilities around keyless entry. For those hoteliers with concerns around security, Chekin’s biometric matching technology ensures your guests – and only your guests – get access to your accommodation. 

Each app will have its own set of strengths and weaknesses so what’s right for you will depend on the individual nature of your hotel and the goals you have in mind.

Free hotel management apps

World-class hotel management apps often require investment, but there are a few free options available for hotels that want to try before they buy:

KWHotel

KWHotel provides a basic, free hotel management solution geared towards small hotels. Its free standalone application includes fundamental features such as reservation management, customer data storage, and basic reporting. The interface focuses on calendar management, allowing for straightforward booking viewing and editing. However, it lacks advanced features like channel management and may not scale well for larger operations. There’s no free trial for an upgraded version, but the free tier offers a glimpse into the app’s capabilities.

Guesty

Guesty offers a comprehensive management platform, suitable for property management companies and hotels with multiple listings. The platform’s strengths lie in centralised reservation management, automated communication, and detailed reporting. Its free trial allows exploration of these features, but the full extent of its capabilities, like revenue management and website creation, are accessible only in paid plans. Guesty is more complex and may require a learning curve, and it’s more suited for larger operations rather than small, independent hotels.

Hotelogix

Hotelogix focuses on a wide range of features in its cloud-based hotel management software, including front desk operations, housekeeping management, and a direct booking engine. It integrates with third-party platforms (including SiteMinder!) for enhanced functionality. The free trial offers a comprehensive overview of its capabilities, but the complexity and breadth of features might be overwhelming for smaller establishments. Hotelogix is tailored more towards medium to large-sized hotels looking for an all-encompassing system.

RoomRacoon

RoomRaccoon is designed with boutique hotels in mind, offering features like reservation and invoice management, and guest communication. Its free trial highlights these functionalities, along with an intuitive interface and reporting tools. However, the platform might not be as robust in handling the needs of larger hotels or those with extensive amenities. RoomRaccoon’s focus is on personalisation and ease of use, which might come at the cost of more advanced, scalable features.

AioSell

AioSell’s all-in-one hotel management system caters to various hotel types, offering a free version with automated rate management and an integrated booking engine. It also provides real-time synchronisation with online travel agencies. While these features are beneficial for revenue management, the free version might lack in-depth customization and advanced marketing tools available in paid versions. AioSell is a good starting point for hoteliers interested in automated revenue management, but it may not fully cater to the specific needs of niche or luxury hotels.

By Dean Elphick

Dean is the Senior Content Marketing Specialist of SiteMinder, the leading technology provider delivering hoteliers unbeatable revenue results. Dean has made writing and creating content his passion for the entirety of his professional life, which includes more than six years at SiteMinder. Through content, Dean aims to provide education, inspiration, assistance and value for accommodation businesses looking to improve the way they run their operations achieve their goals.

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