8 key changes in the Channel Manager 2.0

8 key changes in the Channel Manager 2.0

11 October 2016Krzysztof Kowalczykiewicz

The recently released version of Upper CRS from Profitroom introduces many changes. The enhanced analytic tools allow the hotelier to react swiftly to the market trends and conduct dynamic sales. What is more, this Upper has a much clearer and quicker interface, based on a brand new platform – Center Next Generation.

The previous Channel Manager has grown up to be one of the leading solution on the market, having a rich basket of customers and quite a few positive opinions. The hoteliers praise it for its transparency and logical handling.

What’s the story behind this new CRS? As dynamic sales will in the future gain in importance, one will need a better analytical insight into the trends in guests’ and competition behaviour.

The basic platform of all the Profitroom applications– that is, the Center – had to be updated. The new interface of the refreshed version groups individual functions much better (based on the everyday duties of hoteliers, rather than on an artificial application division), eliminates duplicated views (e.g. booking lists of the CRS and Upper), makes the interface of the individual tools more coherent (and thereby easier to learn), reacts much more quickly and stands out as a really mobile-friendly-platform. The Upper CRS together with all the statistic tools is the first application moved to the new platform.

Many of our specialists have been engaged in the of CenterNG + CRS project. The team included business analysts, marketing specialists, revenue managers, UX specialists, graphic designers, programmers and testers. Now, after many iterations and a few month of hard work, we proudly the new version of our Upper CRS. On the one hand the valued logic and layout are still the same, on the other hand we improved the user experience and functionalities to ensure more efficient and faster decision making on a daily basis.  

What’s new?

1. New reporting module

A sales analysis in the hotel divided after channels and all the most significant indicators such as for example the booking value, ADR or the medium booking anticipation combined with the full sales history allows you to build rate plans in no time and boost your income at the same time.

Thanks to the new analytic indicators, the hotels can make a quick analysis of the ADRS, LOS or WIN, which lets them break the tendencies in the reservations (e.g. shorter advance booking time or longer stay duration). We can also see a juxtaposition of the number of Guests on the website with the final number of bookings, thereby, we understand how effective our offers are and what we can do to give them even more power. All the factors needed for the sales process are now located on one subpage. 

How rates for particular days, the availability and restrictions influence each other is now visible both in the analytical module and directly in the rate plan sheets. So, introducing daily rate changes goes much quicker now.

2. Competition Analysis 

The new CRS means also a new competition analysis module, missing which we could not react in time and plan or correct the pricing policy. The module shows rates offered by other hotels in form of a table, giving you a clear insight of what’s going at the competition’s.  It also allows you to compare the prices divided into rates, board package or sales channels. It also alerts you, should any prices change all of sudden.

3. Demand Analysis

With the analytical modules of the Upper CRS, you can also analyse the demand on your hotel’s website, check the sales conversion in the booking engine or website traffic.

4. Just like Excel  

Every table (rates, availability, restrictions) is quite similar to a calculation sheet. So, if you want to for instance change a price, you just click on the cell and type numbers in – no extra windows or forms necessary. And if you wish to copy a price for the days to come, you just pull the cell out of the edge. You can also copy the whole pricing policy of the external sheet, use the combination of the ctrl+c and ctrl+v. The sheet edition methods known from the previous Center are still available if you need them. 

More and more barriers are being broken, allowing hoteliers to conduct a dynamic pricing policy and work much more effectively than before. 

5. New dashboard

The new dashboard CenterNG welcomes hoteliers with an overview of the most significant information, as for example sales indicators (ADR, RevPar, sales value etc.), availability table, list of today’s arrivals. A useful tool both for a receptionist, a revenue manager and a marketing employee.

6. Closing rate plans simultaneously  

This new tool closes or opens a number of rate plans at the same time. If the availability is low, the hotelier can for example close all the flexible rates quickly, and when introducing a Christmas offer, close all the other offers in no time.

7. Better booking list

We have re-built the booking list completely – it’s much clearer now. Furthermore, it also integrates the bookings achieved through the CRS and Upper. Together with the re-designed detailed view, it makes it easier to check the arrivals for today, undertake necessary preparations, prepare services for the Guest or determine their booking cancellation right much easier.

8. Other changes 

Other changes are: „slim’ version of the price lists, more working space in the sheets, clearer information about errors in the channels and price history. There is also a search engine for the price lists, channels and rooms, as well as a new overview of actions taken in the system (system logs).

What’s still the same?

First and foremost, the new Upper CRS has all the integrations with OTA, GDS and PMS known from the previous version already. And new ones are still coming in. At the moment, the Upper CRS is integrated with a few dozens of channels. 

Data security is still top quality confirmed by the certificate PCI DSS and fulfilling the demands of the Data Protection Law.  

The general logic of the tool with its views is still the same, so users will not have to adapt to a new layout in the Upper CRS. And which is even more important – the switch will be effortless for the hotels.

What’s in the cards for us?

The official premiere of the Upper CRS happened not so long ago, namely during the Hotel Marketing Conference, yet the tool had been already tested in a few hotels before the conference The tests gave us some interesting and very precious feedback (systematically put into practice) and the tool has gained very positive reviews. The new CRS is rated as a clear and transparent one. Often just a few clicks are enough to make a typical actions. 

I can tell you that in the near future the CRS will be enriched with tools useful for the hotel distribution management. These extras will certainly make the work of hoteliers much easier. Apart from that, we are also working on extending the list of system integrations and making them fully dependable. 

It’s the first tool in the family of CenterNG, new innovative products by Profitroom will be launched soon. The first novelty will be a brand new interface of the Upper Booking Engine.

Krzysztof Kowalczykiewicz, IT Director at Profitroom