You have a nice hotel and guests are coming and going. You can't complain about the room revenue, but it could be better, especially during specific months where it could be higher. But how do you increase the room hotel revenue of a smooth-running company? With the six tips in this article, you can easily improve your revenue, without spending (too much) money.
The first way you can easily grow your hotel revenue is by increasing direct bookings. We know this sounds logical enough, but we strongly advise to make sure you offer a better booking experience than your competitors. A good booking engine attracts visitors to book directly on your website, sparing you commission fees. However, not every booking engine is the same; the quality and booking experience can differ per company. The first and maybe most crucial thing is that the booking engine should have a modern look and feel. Out-dated engines do not look trustworthy, meaning you'll lose revenue as soon as the potential guest enters the website. This is also applicable to the entire website. Modern, user-friendly, up-to-date and a welcoming website and booking engine are an absolute must to increase revenue.
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- 5 tips to drive more direct bookings at your hotel website
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Managing booking sites
The second way to increase your income is to manage the booking sites smartly. You're probably selling your rooms on at least two different booking sites. That's a good thing, because nowadays with all the competition, you need to be visible online. So, you can say this is a hidden extra tip from us: be visible, sell your rooms via multiple travel agencies.
But that's not what we wanted to mention in this tip. Manually managing booking sites is highly ineffective. You can't split yourself in two, managing every booking site simultaneously, so you'll always miss room bookings. Or worse, you get overbooked. However, there is software that's extremely good in multitasking. It's called a channel manager, and it can manage all your booking sites at once. Every booking site can be updated 24/7, which increases the number of bookings and thus your revenue. The icing on the cake is that you save yourself lots of manual work and you know: time is money.
- What is the best channel manager for you?
- 3 types of OTA's to spice up your Online Distribution cocktail
Happy guests are more likely to return to your hotel. And if they don't return, hopefully your hotel gets some free word-of-mouth advertising. The guest experience starts when they first discover your accommodation right up until when they return home. Create a mesmerising customer journey for your guests. It's not just about being original, but mostly about being hospitable and spoiling your guests.
Don't be afraid to ask for reviews because they count too nowadays. When your guests are satisfied with their stay, we're sure they would love to write a review. With positive reviews, you attract more guests to your hotel.
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- 3 tips to upgrade your hotel guest communication
Although this tip isn't necessarily directly increasing your revenue, it does help. Many hoteliers spend a lot of time and energy into processing credit card payments. Instead of doing all that manual work, you could consider automating payments via an integration (payment gateway to PMS). No more manual handling of credit card numbers, no more PCI compliance insecurities, and no more chasing for your money. So, how does that (indirectly) increase your revenue? This is how:
- It saves time (less manual work).
- You have higher liquidity and a healthier cashflow (payments are often already done before the guest arrives).
- There is no more hassle with payments at the front-office, which adds value to the guest experience (and thus a higher chance of upselling, cross-selling and re-booking).
Hotel sales strategies
Hotel sales strategies is a broad subject, but it covers many ways to increase your hotel revenue. Upselling and cross-selling are examples of promising strategies to improve your business. Think about offering a room upgrade, adding champagne to breakfast or selling tickets for the theatre nearby. All those things increase sales.
Play with different rate types and packages. The BAR rate will do fine, but a last-minute rate or Length of Stay (LOS) rate can be interesting as well. Packages can offer luxury and hassle-free stays, something guests might be craving for.
Also, different pricing strategies can be beneficial. A pricing strategy gives structure to your hotel room prices, and your approach becomes more systematic. This is especially interesting for a revenue manager.
Try some strategies and see what works and what doesn't. If you start a new strategy you don’t necessarily have to continue with it if it’s not working. But if you don't try, you might be missing out on a huge opportunity to increase your revenue.
- 13 Room Rate Types For Your Hotel
- 4 performance indicators (metrics) for a more profitable hotel
- 5 successful pricing strategies for a higher revenue
Communication and marketing
Your website, social media, advertising, and partnerships are all part of this communication and marketing tip. As mentioned before, make sure you have a modern and user-friendly website. Keep your text up-to-date (are there new events or news that bookers should know about?). Also make sure there's a prominent booking button on your website, to make it as easy as possible for guests to book a room.
Next to that, what is your target group and are you currently reaching them via social media? Do some research on where you can find your target group. When you focus on corporate business, LinkedIn is an exciting platform to start showing yourself. Do you have a picturesque hotel? Then Instagram is your platform to promote your hotel. Keep in mind that having an excellent social media strategy can be time-consuming, but at the same time, it’s a free platform to promote yourself. Make sure to stay visible by posting a message at least two times a week.
The same goes for advertising. It can be costly, and we recommend checking beforehand if you are going to reach your target group via the advertising platform you're thinking of. Otherwise, it's just a waste of money. However, don’t be afraid to give it a try because it can give a boost to your revenue.
Partnerships can be very interesting too; you do something for them, and they do something for you. Think of the local bakery as a partner. You promote their delicious pastries to hotel guests and the bakery has special vouchers for your hotel. It’s a Win-Win!
- Automation of your hotel's online distribution flow is an excellent investment to make your business more efficient and less time-consuming.
- An incredible guest experience is essential. If it isn't for the guest to return to your hotel, it is for word-of-mouth advertising or good reviews.
- Hotel strategies offer a lot of potential for increasing revenue. You only need to dare to try them. And if a specific strategy doesn't work for you, you stop and try the next one.
- Communication and marketing are easily overlooked or underrated but can add so much value for your hotel accommodation. Social media is a free platform to connect with potential guests and show more of what you’re doing.
For more than 16 years, SmartHOTEL has been helping hoteliers navigate the exciting world of online distribution. From our office based in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, our team serves independent hotels, hostels and chains worldwide by providing channel management and tailored online distribution solutions. A lot has changed over the last years, but our goal remains the same: simply connect hotels to the world. For any questions regarding our services, please contact us at email@example.com or call +31 (0)182 75 11 18.