What software do I choose for my hotel? 2/2
[READ THE FIRST PART HERE].
Nowadays the day-to-day management of a hotel cannot be done without the help ofIT solutions. However, there are so many softwares available on the market that it is becoming increasingly difficult to differentiate between each one and their different functions. What’s more, these software are all constantly evolving and offering functions that sometimes overlap with one another, which doesn’t make your choice any easier.
For this reason we have provided here a of the different main functionalities of the whole summary of the main distinct features of the entire IT ecosystem within a hotel, with some examples of corresponding software.
This list is split in two parts, in the first article we discussed the following functionalities:
- Managing the hotel
- In-room technology
- Housekeeping and maintenance
Whereas this second article will tackle:
- Yield management
- Customer relationship management
The management of guest satisfaction
There is no doubt that hotels with a good reputation are more likely to get bookings, and in particular direct bookings. Indeed, 90% of customers consider reviews as decisive factorwhen deciding to book a hotel. Therefore hotels need to follow guests’ satisfaction of hotels as closely as possible and maximise the posting of guest comments on review sites.
This software has three main functions: collecting reviews, helping to analyse these collected reviews and their diffusion on specialised sites. Some tools make it possible to carry out an analysis of the e-reputation of competitors hotels.
- KEY FUNCTIONS :
- Collecting guest reviews using post-stay questionnaires
- Measurement and analysis of customer satisfaction on social media platforms
- Following the reputation of competitors
- Broadcasting of opinions collected on review sites
- SOME EXAMPLES: guest Alliance, Guest Suite, Qualitelis, Repup, ReviewPro, TrustYou, ...
Revenue or yield management
The RMS (Revenue Management System)
The optimisation of room rates
The definition of the price of a room is an increasingly complex discipline. These days tools exist to facilitate the work of the hotel’s sales teams.
The functionality is the price recommendation based on thousands of different data such as the competitors' prices, history of bookings, market supply, events in the vicinity of the hotel, or even the weather.
Some also allow it to work on autopilot and update the price of rooms in the PMS. They equally work out when a change in price is needed in order to maximise the margin and occupancy rate of the hotel.
- KEY FUNCTIONS :
- Optimising room rates
- External market analysis
- Internal booking analysis
- Estimates the optimal timings for changes to room rates
- SOME EXAMPLES: BookingSuite, Ideas, Oxygen, RateGain, Spot pilot, Infor EzRMS
Guest relationship management
CRM Hotelier (guest Relationship Management)
Optimising the relationship with guests and accompanying them during their stay
Since a hotel is obviously nothing without its customers, it is essential that they are at the heart of the hotel’s approach. Especially since they are becoming more and more demanding and expect information, service, responsiveness and simple interactions all at the same time with their hotel.
For the hotel, whatever the origin of the guest (direct or OTA), meeting their expectations clearly makes satisfaction in the short-term possible, but it also provides the opportunity to create a direct contact that can last well after their stay while storing useful data to personalise the loyalty marketing actions.
The so-called eConciergerie tools are part of this family of tools that allow all the hotel's services and recommendations of the hotel team to be made available to the customers, directly on their mobile devices, with the possibility to book them.
To get the maximum use out of this it is recommended that this service be accessible both in an installed application in a webapp that is automatically displayed when connecting to the hotel's Wi-Fi.
Finally, you must ensure that the hotel is completely free of the content that it can display on the eConciergerie portal, and that the provider is not allowed to monetise the information retrieved from the portal (commission on the booking of services or resale of data).
In order to go even further in guest relations, you must consider interactions with customers through a chat tool in the eConciergerie portal and also by SMS or through public platforms such as Messenger or Whatsapp,to name only the most important ones.
There are tools that exist to manage all these channels centrally.
Contacting guests prior to arrival is greatly appreciated. It is the opportunity to prepare their arrival and to ensure that the check-in is accelerated as much as possible, all the while selling additional services. On average, €4 to 5 can thereby be generated per email sent prior to the stay.
Finally, it is essential to have a customer file readily useable, as the guest index functions of PMS are often limited.
This is why a customer database, external to the PMS but which automatically feeds on the latter as well as the tools described above, is probably the best approach to guarantee the maintenance of a quality customer file that gathers all the information about the client (history of exchanges, stays, satisfaction, preferences, social networks ….).
This database is a goldmine for fully personalising and automating all the actions of reception, marketing and loyalty of the hotel.
To conclude on all these tools forming the hotel’s CRM block, the ability to configure the settings is essential because because each hotel and each customer is unique. The solution must be able to adapt as much as possible while automating tasks to increase productivity.
Ideally a unified platform across all these services and connected to the other functional blocks described above is a guarantee of success.
- KEY FUNCTIONS:
- Guest portal
- Chat function
- Ordering forms and booking of services
- Pre/in/post-stay automated emails with a pre check-in and sales questionnaire
- Conversational SMS
- Centralized management of all messaging channels
- Enrichment of customer files and 360 view on the customer
The providers are listed in this article in alphabetical order and do not reflect any preference on our part. This list is not exhaustive, if you think that a solution has its place in this article, do not hesitate to indicate it to us.
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