Upselling is a common way for hotels to generate more revenue. Whether you are a small family hotel or a multi-property brand, this is an equally effective option for every type of property. Upselling is when a hotel offers additional services to guests, such as a spa session, buffet breakfast, etc. But hotels can also sell rooms (otherwise known as room upgrades) to guests with the same intent as up-selling. Both not only help improve the guest experience, but also contribute to the hotel’s revenue. While there are several upscale hotel strategies, in this blog post, we will only discuss ways to sell hotel rooms using a hotel management system.
Now back to the topic: how can a hotel management system help you sell rooms? Is a Hotel reservation system powerful enough to allow hoteliers to resell rooms? We’ll find out very soon, but before that, we’ve picked out some of the most reliable ways to sell rooms with a hotel management system in place:
When we talk about restrictions, we mean that hotels can set restrictions on the minimum number of bookable nights or the minimum number of bookable rooms. In other words, online hotel reservation software can help you sell rooms based on the number of nights a guest intends to stay with you (length of stay) or based on the number of rooms that a group of customers wishes to reserve. An upselling opportunity is presented in such cases.
Minimum nights bookable:
It is a great strategy for hotels to sell rooms to guests who stay more than one night. If a guest books a room for 5 nights, you can upgrade them to a better room for the sixth and seventh night! You can also make an offer and launch a promotional campaign. Everyone loves a giveaway or an upgrade, especially when it comes to an unconditional giveaway.
Minimum number of rooms that can be booked:
The approach is the same as for the strategy above, except that in this case the factor that will present itself is whether the upsell opportunity is the number of rooms booked. If a group booking shows up for 10 rooms, you can upgrade them to better rooms for a low price. It’s a great way to delight several guests at once. And honestly, it wouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg, but it could earn you a dozen amazing reviews!
Hotelogix gives hotels complete flexibility in setting your restrictions based on your hotel’s needs and target audience. Your reception staff will have access to all restrictions on their dashboard, as these can be preset in the background.
With a Hotel management system in place, you can not only predefine as many packages as you want, but also customize them according to your needs. When designing a package, you will need to consider the season, your target audience, their purchasing ability, your hotel’s offering, etc. Taking all of these factors into consideration will help bring you closer to your customer expectations and delight them. You should ideally have separate and unique packages for your corporate guests, leisure guests, millennial guests, etc. Make them as focused as possible for maximum pleasure.
Now, how can a package help you sell your room? We will tell you. Take the example of a couple who want to celebrate their birthday in your property. The most obvious option is for them to book a room and then add the services they want to enjoy during their stay. The other way (the smart way) is to offer a couple package or a special anniversary package to these guests. No, we are not asking you to offer them extra services for free and incur losses! It just means giving them the experience they don’t even know they want, and they’ll pay you.
This couple, who previously knew nothing better than to just book a quiet and serene room, now has a reservation with you for a package that gives them a much better and more comfortable room, a spa session, a candlelight dinner ( and what have you!) for a little more. It’s not that they don’t want to spend a lot more, it’s just that they weren’t aware of all of your hotel’s offers. By designing a package, you are encouraging guests not only to upgrade rooms, but also to provide you with more non-room revenue, through the services and activities that you will include in the packages! It is therefore not a simple upgrade of rooms, but also a global upscale activity for your hotel!
Long stay discounts:
Hotels can also increase the chances of upselling, and therefore their income, when they offer discounts for long stays. When a business traveler or vacationer makes a reservation that spans multiple weeks, you can use it to incentivize them to upgrade rooms. When such a reservation arrives, you can offer them a better room option for a nominal supplement. This could work wonders, as long-term guests take comfort more seriously than vacationers. Spending a few extra dollars wouldn’t be as bad as living in less comfort!
This is a very commonly used hotel reservation strategy where hotels don’t make their inventory as transparent, in order to encourage guests to spend an extra day or two. For example: suppose a customer wants to book a luxury suite for two nights, a Tuesday and a Wednesday. The front desk realizes that this is a great opportunity for the hotel to up-sell, as the least bookings are in the middle of the week.
Thus, in order to increase the number of reservations, they are implementing the strategy of long nights. Front desk staff contacts the guest telling them that they will not be able to honor the reservation for that particular room type for those exact nights, unless the reservation includes a day or two before or after. The staff would of course add that they would offer the extra nights at a lower price than the customer was originally supposed to pay. The guest would normally take the offer and agree to add an extra night or two as that turns out to be a good deal for them too!
This is the most commonly used upselling strategy. In this case, the front desk staff or even a social media ad would inform the potential guest that the hotel would be upgrading their regular room to a deluxe suite (or any upgrades offered by the hotel) for just a few extra dollars. .
HOW EFFICIENT IS A HOTEL RESERVATION SYSTEM IN INTEGRATED SALES ROOMS?
Here is the real deal. The purpose of a hotel reservation system is pretty self-explanatory. It is not equipped with all the other features that can support the upselling process. Only one Property management system can do that. An HRS is not as feature-packed, nor as dynamic. You can use the HRS as a dashboard to collect the number of rooms booked, vacant, available, etc. But the nuances that make a hotelier’s life easier are only available in a PMS. Think of it this way – A hotel reservation system is a subset of a property management system.
The general myth surrounding small and mid-sized hotels is that they don’t need the advanced features of a cloud-based property management system. I would even go so far as to say that small and medium-sized hotels need it more than hotel chains. Simply because they need more online visibility because they don’t have the luxury of a brand name, the marketing budget, etc. Small hotels need a PMS not only to sell their rooms, but also to connect online with potential customers.
So how do you go about creating restrictions, designing packages, long-stay discounts, etc. for customers on an online hotel reservation system? How can a property management system help you sell your rooms through packages? Almost anything related to upselling can be preset in the back end which the front desk can access with one click. Customization of restrictions, packages, etc. according to your needs can bring you immense benefits.
Hotelogix’s cloud-based hotel management system helps you with your booking tasks, but it is also capable of much more than that. From customer management to customer loyalty, from expanding your reservation sources to integrations with revenue management systems, business intelligence tools, reputation management, accounting, point of sale management, etc. – Hotelogix is the PMS your hotel needs.
Go ahead and contact us to find out exactly that and more and we’ll show you how simple and effective these upsell features are! Get a free trial of Hotelogix cloud PMS or contact us on [email protected] and we’ll be happy to walk you through it all.