Success Story: Edgar Suites
Introduction to Edgar Suites
Edgar Suites is a new generation of serviced apartments, their Urban Suites are fully equipped apartments located in the most popular areas in Paris, Levallois, Châtillon, Meudon and Bordeaux.
Each Urban Suite is unique with its own style, antique furniture and decor adapted to the place and the neighborhood.
With friendly, well-designed living spaces, Urban Suites are the ideal solution for families and groups of friends or colleagues. The guest experience is made easier by a high level of service, a multi-channel reception accessible by mobile phone 24/7, and a team of professional flat managers.
- Number of apartments equipped with LoungeUp: 400
- Average occupancy rate: 92%.
- Average rating on Booking·com across all residences: 9.2/10
- NPS : 70
- Year LoungeUp solution was implemented: 2021
The initial plan
➤ Digitalise the guest relationship to offer greater flexibility to travellers.
➤ Offer a simplified travel experience, with no waiting, and no paperwork (no ID or credit card required upon arrival)
➤ Assist operational teams in informing guests prior to arrival and making themselves available during the guests's stay
➤ Facilitate access to practical information and recommendations.
➤ Free up time to spend on meaningful interactions with guests
➤ Equip teams with an easy-to-use technology tool that makes them more efficient
Edgar Suites offers unique and modern apartments to its guests. Each apartment has its own special features: code to retrieve the key or open the door, location of the apartment in the residence, address, wi-fi code, amenities, etc.
The challenge was to automatically send the accomodation information to the right guest at the right time, relieving the operational teams of this responsibility.
Edgar Suites' desire to digitalise guest relations as much as possible is a perfect fit with the LoungeUp solution.
Making the arrival as smooth as possible is also an important consideration, offering the guest independence particularly with easy access to their accommodation. Upon arrival, the guest is greeted by a flat manager, which is why it is essential to have a tool that guarantees efficient communication. The LoungeUp platform also allows the Digital Concierge team to be available and responsive to assist guests from booking to arrival, during their stay and through to check-out, and after the stay.
Implementation of the LoungeUp solution
✓ Connection with Mews to ensure the exchange of guest data between PMS and LoungeUp CRM (Guest Profile)
✓ Configuring the Messaging Hub to manage the different communication channels (email, SMS, WhatsApp).
✓ Creating and personalising email and SMS campaigns to inform guests before and during their stay
✓ Configuring the guest portal / Guest App for each apartment, with shared content for accommodations in the same area and also personalised content for each apartment.
✓ Creation of multilingual message templates to quickly respond to guest questions
The steps needed to make the traveller experience more flexible:
① Reassure the guest about their booking 😌
It is important that the guest feels confident that you are expecting them, by reminding them of their booking, number of nights, dates of their stay, the amenities included, etc., to pre-empt any concerns they may have.
Several reminders 5 days and 2 days before arrival are sent to reassure the guest and maintain the sense of excitement before their stay. This gives the guest an easy way to contact the establishment if they have any questions prior to their stay.
The images included in the emails are those of the actual apartment that the guest has booked and give them a preview of their new accommodation.
② Inform the guest prior to arrival about arrival procedure ✅
Arrival can be all the more worrying for guest , as there is no reception to provide information or referrals. Edgar Suites takes the lead by sending out a clear, concise "4 things you need to know " campaign before your stay, to anticipate any questions guests may have.
From check-in and check-out times, to housekeeping and laundry, to transportation and reminders about the cancellation policy, guests are proactively sent the information they need.
A reminder is automatically generated by e-mail and/or SMS if the guest has not opened the e-mail containing all the information about their stay.
③ Offer an online check-in before arrival
Edgar Suites sends out a pre-check-in form before the stay to collect information about the guest and facilitate their arrival. Contacts, arrival time, reason for stay, preferred language, nationality... This form can be modified at anytime by the teams according to the guest data they wish to collect in order to adapt the services or experiences offered.
④ Facilitate access to the accomodation 🔑
Each guest is assigned a flat manager who will be their point of contact and will manage their arrival. The guest is given a phone number to contact them, so the email campaigns automatically include the right flat manager contact for the guest.
The information campaigns also offer to book a transfer from the train station or airport, if this is included in the booking.
Directions to the accommodation, the apartment number, the code etc are also provided to make moving into the apartment as simple as possible.
Guests do not have to provide their ID or credit card upon arrival, they can immediately begin to enjoy their stay. After all, the guest has already completed the registration form before their arrival.
⑤ Be contactable and responsive to guests' requests 📱
The Digital Concierge is available by phone, email, SMS, WhatsApp or chat, available in three languages (French, English and Spanish) giving the guest the freedom to choose what suits them best.
As far as the Concierge is concerned, thanks to the Messaging Hub it couldn't be much easier, as all guest requests fall into the same messaging system, regardless of the channel used by the guest (WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, SMS, chat on the application, etc.).
With a message status system (unread, in progress, blocked, completed...), teams can coordinate their responses to guests without delays or forgetting to respond.
Each conversation is accompanied by guest profile and the team can consult the guest file to find out all the information about them and the history of the messages exchanged with them.
⑥ Inform the guest about the amenities and services 🛎️
Each guest receives an accommodation guide with all the information they need about the amenities and regulations.
A QR-Code is displayed in the flat, which the guest can scan to access the guest portal and see information about their accommodation, tourist attractions near their apartment, a chat to easily contact the Digital Concierge, etc.
Guests get Edgar's best recommendations directly on their phone on an interactive map, like a concierge in their pocket!
⑦ Check that the guest is satisfied during their stay ⭐️
After the first night, a message is programmed to ask for feedback from the guest and allowing them to raise any potential issues and ensure that they are not missing anything.
⑧ Point out the availability of the Digital Concierge 💁
Long before arrival and during the stay, the focus is on the availability of the Digital Concierge, which is on hand 24/7 to assist travellers. By proactively contacting the guest via email, SMS and WhatsApp (using LoungeUp's automated campaigns), it is also makes iteasier for the guest to contact the reception and report any potential issues.
This guest relationship is both easy and beneficial , as it provides guests with high quality service and this is reflected in the reviews that guests have posted:
⑨ Facilitate check-out 👋
The guest is sent their check-out time by email / SMS / WhatsApp with a reminder of the procedure to follow before leaving the accommodation (arrival time of the flat manager, locking the door, handling the keys, cleaning not required, ...). The guest does not have to contact the reception to find out about how to leave the apartment.
⑩ Build guest loyalty 🔙
As a thank you, each guest receives a promotional code for special rates on a future booking. The guest is encouraged to let the team know if there are any improvements that can be made and if they were pleased with their stay, to leave a review on Google or Tripadvisor.
Feedback from the operational team
ℹ️ Guests are informed more efficiently
85% of guests open the email campaigns sent in the pre-stay period. The average opening rate for all campaigns throughout the stay is 80%. These high rates confirm that travellers wish to be informed prior to their stay, avoiding having to contact the establishment themselves.
🛎️ Smoother procedures
20% of guests complete the pre-check-in form 5 days before arrival, and 50% of the guests who haven't yet completed it do it the day before. For the rest of the guests who have not yet filled in their information online, the area managers contact them manually.
The operational teams have a dashboard showing the daily arrivals and departures, which allows them to know which guests have completed their pre-check-in or need to be rechecked, which apartments need to be prepared, the arrival time the guest has provided, the language and nationality of the guest, etc. With one click, the team can access the guest's file to learn more about their profile.
⏱️ More time for operational teams to focus on their guests
Area managers have fewer repetitive tasks to perform and fewer calls or
guests asking for more information. They have more time to respond to guests' requests, which are
Using a centralised platform to manage guest conversations (Messaging Hub), arrivals/departures (Arrival Management), guest database(Guest Profile) or all email/SMS/WhatsApp campaigns is a real advantage in facilitating the daily work of their teams. Giving them a tool that they can easily use to improve their work is also beneficial for guest satisfaction and even the employer brand.
✅ Fewer repetitive tasks for the guest relations teams
The teams do not have to send any information manually to inform guests about their apartment, the messages are daily, personalized and updated in real time. Messages are sent by email before the stay, reminders by email and SMS/WhatsApp(depending on the customer profile).
Manual messages mostly concern proactive guest requests.
☎️ Fewer calls or SMS to ask for basic information
When guests are informed efficiently about basic questions prior to their stay, the volume of calls and messages to be handled by the front desk is considerably reduced. This gives the front desk more time to interact with guests or answer calls in a more meaningful way.
⏳ A higher response rate to guest requests
Operations teams respond faster with the Messaging Hub, which allows them to manage all conversations and communication channels on a single screen, and the Staff Companion application, which is the mobile version of the Messaging Hub, so they don't miss a message even when they're away from their computer.
The message templates allow you to complete a message with the necessary information in one click (template of the arrival procedure, recommendations, technical support, offer, thank you, check-out reminder...).
⭐️ An extremely high level of guest satisfaction for all residences
With an average rating on Booking·com of 9.2/10 across all of their residences, Edgar Suites is committed to ensuring that their guests are satisfied with their stay.
The key to personalising the guest journey (especially if it is mostly digital) is to provide the guest with the information or recommendations they need, at the right time. Not only is it reassuring for them to feel supported, but they also feel that their needs are being met ahead of time.
Latest developments to the solution
The group is rapidly evolving and regularly opens new residences. The Edgar Suites team has therefore been trained from the outset to modify its email, SMS and WhatsApp campaigns, as well as the dedicated guest portal for each residence, for greater independence. Regular meetings are held with the project manager to present new features of the solution that may be of interest to the teams.
The CRM has been adapted across the group as the sharing of guest databases is a way to boost loyalty by encouraging guests to visit new apartments that they haven’t yet stayed in and to carry out more targeted and effective marketing campaigns.
The registration forms are signed by guests on their phones, and travellers are now asked to list the other guests staying with them and to provide their identity and contact details.
Campaign templates are configured by the Head of Marketing to ensure a consistent brand image and facilitate the creation of new campaigns and marketing initiatives for each apartment.
To find out more about Edgar Suites, check out their website: www.edgarsuites.com
Image credits: Edgar Suites, Canva.com