Manually managing booking channels can suck the life out of working for a hotel. If you want to focus on hospitality, instead of continually updating room availability, finding a way to boost the way your channel manager functions—even those of an automated one—is a must.
1. Make sure your rates are priced intelligently
If it’s your first time using a channel manager for hotels
, you might be unaware that you can use a pricing intelligence tool to keep an eye on your competitor’s prices. Don’t eat into your profits, but try to avoid the reduction in bookings that comes from setting prices too high.
2. Design your website for direct bookings
A hotel booking engine for websites
is one of the top things to make direct booking seamless for your customers. Even if your channel manager shows that most of your bookings come through third-party apps or travel agents, it could be that a few tweaks to your direct booking engine could get you a massive increase in direct conversions.
3. Always try to grow your channels
It’s not a zero-sum game. Customers are always finding new ways to book, and you should always give them new ways to find you. Going global means that more and more travel agents will be able to find your information and recommend them to any clients who are looking to stay in a hotel nearby. Realise your booking potential and say goodbye to empty rooms which can quickly turn into a drain for your money.
4. Connect a property management system to your channel manager
A property management system (PMS) is a vital part of your hotel infrastructure. Without it, you would be going blind on when guests were checking in and out, who was a current guest, how many room keys were issued, and a whole mass of other issues that would quickly prove to be a key part of your business. Integrating a PMS with automatic two-way updating means that you’ll have up to date and accurate information at your fingertips, ensuring your time runs as smoothly as your guests’ stay.
5. Make important notes that will affect room sales
Everyone who uses the channel manager will need to be aware of how to mark and add notes to certain dates in the system. If there’s a big event happening in a nearby place, anyone who uses the manager needs to know the right moment to put room rates up, and how much to put them up by. This will save you a job and stop any rooms being sold for low rates before someone realises halfway through the day and changes the prices.
The bottom line is that a channel manager should make your life easier, and not be another source of stress in the already difficult hospitality business. Knowing these tips and tricks make having one an invaluable asset to your business.