27.07.21 / 5 min read
The luxurious and iconic Port Lympne is a British hotel with a conscience where you can sleep amongst wild animals in an award winning eco-friendly 600 acre reserve in the Kentish countryside. Owned by the Aspinall Foundation, a renowned conservation charity formed almost 30 years ago, its profits go towards supporting and protecting animal projects all around the world. Home to over 900 animals and 75 species, Port Lympne’s offering is somewhat unique, and it provides a diverse array of guest experiences, including 14 different accommodation types made up of a boutique hotel, lodges, treehouses, panoramic bubbles and more.
The team approached Profitroom in 2017 in search of a solution to improve their booking platform and customer journey and something that was fit for a premium property with a particularly unique offering. We spoke to Reservations Manager Richard Amlot about how they transformed their booking strategy with the help of some technology.
“Our old online booking platform was very underdeveloped. It provided a very poor customer journey and our conversion and dropout was way off the global industry standard. So we needed to find an online booking platform that could take us to the next step and improve our booking performance and customer journey online. We also needed something comprehensive that could showcase our varied offering and help relieve the burden on the front desk to process bookings.
In fact, we researched a lot of different online booking platforms. Profitroom really stood out and wanted to actually develop a partnership with us rather than just being one of those faceless suppliers we were so used to before.
First off - the integration with Profitroom to our current PMS system was seamless, as well as with our other third party channels with Profitroom’s Channel Manager.
As I mentioned, offering such a variety of refined accommodation types creates significant challenges when it comes to taking bookings, not least of which is conveying enough information to guests to give them the confidence to make a direct booking via our website. Profitroom really caters to this.
The set up, training and support that we were provided have been outstanding. There’s not a single fault to mention. It’s so easy to use and easy to train staff on. We really love how user friendly it is - both for our customers and for members of our sales team - and we really love the level of support and the friendliness of the Customer Success team.”
“Profitroom has hugely improved our booking success through the levels of conversion and the drastic reduction in our dropout rates. With the vast amounts of accommodation types we have there’s a lot of information required for guests to make a booking and the booking flow that Profitroom provides actually provides a clear and concise area for the guest to see that information and make their decision. Website bookings now account for over 66 percent of bookings.
Furthermore, our Average Daily Rate (ADR) has increased by up to £35. In fact, during the Coronavirus lockdown we managed to achieve 99 percent occupancy thanks to Profitroom. At one point we were seeing a booking every 11 seconds!”
“We tend to receive a lot of generic enquiries through our website from people that are looking for something a bit more unique. If we had relied on our team to manually field calls and enquiries we would have lost a lot of bookings at a crucial time.
For example, the ‘Opportunities’ functionality allows us to tailor and personalise the proposals we send. It reduces the amount of calls we need to make - including those endless to and fro email conversations - and makes the team way more efficient. It also includes the ability to send completely personalised proposals and you can add incentives if you want like applying a discount or offering an extra night for free.
We’ve really hit the ground running since the lockdowns and a key contributor to that has been a streamlined and optimised booking strategy, which has enabled us to maximise the opportunities presented by post-lockdown demand. Having put the relevant measures in place, Port Lympne is well positioned now. Consumer behaviour is changing and many guests are searching for staycations with a conscience. Staycations which offer a reduced carbon footprint and eco friendly credentials are now front of mind!”
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