It is no secret that the management of online reservations is a challenge for hoteliers. It’s one continually echoed across today’s industry, with one key underlying theme: Time, or lack thereof.
Updating each booking channel – with new rates and availabilities – is an investment of time and, often, lots of it, at the expense of operational efficiency and revenue.
As competition grows and new digital tools continue to permeate the market, it’s imperative to select a fast and effective hotel distribution and revenue management solution that can save time, minimise operational costs and, ultimately, increase online revenue.
In this blog, we look into three different properties, the challenges they faced before implementing their chosen platform and the results they attained after implementation.
From the outset, all three properties experienced the following problems:
- Manual updating of online channels via a one-way interface. This process was not only time-consuming; it also failed to ensure real-time rate parity across all channels
- Risk of overbooking
- Limited customer reach online.
Sea World Resort, Gold Coast, Australia
Profile: 400 rooms. One of Australia’s most popular and family-friendly resorts.
Prior to implementing a cloud-based channel manager, this resort was challenged with the time-consuming, manual management of its online inventory and maintaining rate parity across all its channels. The team was often left with insufficient time to focus on other key tasks and sales initiatives.
South Beach Group, Miami, USA
Profile: A collection of twelve 2.5 to 4-star boutique hotels in the heart of Miami Beach.
With the majority of their business generated through online bookings and the constant need to change rates up to 20 times a day, this Group found 60% of all submissions failed to even go through. Other key challenges with using their former channel manager included:
- Time wasted submitting requests when room changes were needed
- Submissions not processed and constantly out of parity
- Reservations received with incorrect rates or dates that should have been closed
- A one-way interface that did not provide live updates and often failed to send notifications or error submission reports.
Tauzia Group, Jakarta, Indonesia
Profile: Operates Harris Hotels, a 4-star chain.
With plans to launch a new hotel targeting the youth and budget traveler, Tauzia Group was tasked with managing online inventory for its 35 hotels across 20 online channels. A new technology platform was needed to assist with the timely upkeep of online inventory and to ensure rate parity across all channels.
All accommodation providers started seeing results almost immediately after implementing a new online hotel distribution platform that was better suited to their individual needs. The most substantial change was the significant time reduction in managing online inventory, as the majority was now automated.
Since implementing their channel management solution:
- Sea World Resort has experienced a 36% increase in online channel revenue
- South Beach Group increased revenue by 17% within one year
- Tauzia Group has experienced a 150% increase in online revenue, which now represents 20% of its overall revenue.
Specifically, the accommodation providers have also benefited from:
- The ability to offer real-time rates and have them automatically updated across all channels. Due to the guaranteed rate parity, the providers are now able to connect with more websites, to increase their customer reach and online sales.
- Property specific solutions successfully integrated with their existing PMS. The new two-way interface automatically redistributes available inventory and has also eliminated any errors caused by manual entry. Equally as important, they can now sell their last room without the risk of getting overbooked.
- Streamlined management of OTAs. This has saved both time and money; staff no longer spend time manually re-entering reservation emails.
When it comes to finding an online hotel distribution platform to manage inventory, it’s crucial to find an all-encompassing, automated solution that can decrease operational costs – including transactional costs and labor – as well as maximise online revenue. Start by clearly identifying your key challenges then finding a distribution platform that can combat them all.
As the above cases show, getting the right technology platform can make an immediate positive impact on a business and provide a significant return on investment in the long run.