Why direct booking
There are many OTA channels on the market, which are very popular among hotel guests. Having your offer presented on their websites may substantially increase the number of bookings. However, channels are and will always be out of your control, which also means that profits can be unpredictable. Small changes which you won’t be informed about may have a huge impact. As much as making you unable to predict revenue from month to month.
In the case of OTAs, there is also no certainty that individual guest will come back to your hotel. After all, OTA and not you is a brand that a guest goes to in search of a stay. Unfortunately, this approach doesn’t bring you returning guests, but only those for whom the place is unimportant and only the price counts. When only using OTAs, you also have no influence on your potential guests.
The answer to such problems is direct booking, but not the kind that is based only on the booking through the hotel website. Direct booking is a strategy, starting from the approach to collecting booking, through the tools supporting all direct actions, up to your own methods of advertising your facility. Only such comprehensive activities bring measurable results. This is the only strategy that allows the hotel to be completely independent and to control its revenue. The strategy decision needs to be made by the hotel. The rest is provided by Profitroom.
When we created Profitroom Suite, one of the principles that guided us was the simplicity of use. At the moment there is no better option providing simplicity than SaaS, Software as a Service, the cloud-based solutions. Thanks to this approach, a hotelier doesn’t have to install anything locally. The only thing one needs to have in order to use direct booking tools is a device with Internet access.
The portfolio of Profitroom tools includes:
- Profitroom Booking Engine that integrates with a hotel website
- Profitroom Channel Manager, allowing you to manage direct sales and sales through OTAs in one place
- Profitroom CRM, automating communication with guests and increasing the chances of selling your offer
In addition, in Profitroom we offer website design for hotels, which completes the whole process and professionally presents the object on the Internet and encourages guests to visit it.
How it all works
A website visitor goes to the website of the hotel, which by its appearance and presentation of the offer (defined by the hotelier using the Booking Engine and automatically appearing on the website) attracts his attention. He books a stay through a simple booking interface directly on the hotel's website (Booking Engine allows a flexible selection of dates, offers and rooms, according to the hotelier's guidelines).
The guest's details go to the hotel's CRM database, and the guest receives an email with a ‘Thank you for the booking’ message along with the necessary information about the stay. In the case online payments are connected to the Booking Engine, it also has the option of paying the fee that the hotelier sees in the booking panel.
The guest receives all necessary information in the form of a welcome pack before the arrival date, and after leaving gets a ‘thank you for the stay’ email. If he additionally gave marketing consent, he will receive future emails from CRM that are adjusted to his preference. A year after the booking he will receive a special invitation to a similar to the last stay with a discount, voucher or other supplement chosen by the hotelier. Profiled communication definitely increases the chances of a guest returning, who looks more favourably at the matching offer.
In the meantime, Channel Manager ensures that the hotelier will not get lost in OTA and direct bookings and it eliminates the risk of overbooking. In addition, when a booking is created using OTA, CRM will make sure that the guest who made the booking will be happy to leave you his email along with marketing approval (find out how).
However, before the guest goes to the hotel's website, he must somehow find out about it. This is what the Marketing Services team takes care of, by helping hoteliers to use all forms of online advertising available to their profile (Google Ads, Google Hotel Search, Facebook Ads).
Marketing Services will also take care of the positioning of the hotel website and the brand protection campaign, thanks to which, after searching for the name of your hotel, your website will appear as the first result of the search ahead of other hotels and OTA.
As our main task is to support hoteliers in direct booking activities, we never leave anyone alone. The Customer Support team is available every day via chat within the Profitroom Suite and provides advice and assistance with all marketing and revenue activities.
We also run a lot of training sessions, including the Masterclass Hotel for reception or webinars for new customers, thanks to which they immediately know how to use the products. We also share knowledge on the blog all the time, and once a year we organize a conference for hoteliers from all over Poland, Hotel Marketing Conference. This two-day industry meeting is not only a place to exchange experiences and contacts but is packed with a lot of training conducted by our internal and external experts!
We also know that you should never stop development and at the same time realize that hoteliers don’t have to be experts in User Experience. Therefore, for each of our products, we carry out continuous tests and research to improve conversions, attract even more guests, or make the booking process easier. We only implement our best and well-proven ideas into tools. All changes and novelties are always preceded by many months of work conducted by multiple Profitroom departments.
What the future will bring
The new tools we are working on will focus on the subject of automation. We want to make it easier to get rid of tasks that take too much time for hotel employees, while not allowing them to focus enough on providing high-quality services to guests who are already staying. The technology already allows for a lot and it constantly evolves. What you had to do manually before can now be left to the tools that make decisions themselves and select the best solutions for your potential guests.
We believe that the more time you give to the hotel staff, the better it will translate into the quality of guest service, and thus for their greater satisfaction and more frequent use of your hotel's services.