9 Ways To Increase Hotels’ Online Bookings & Lower Dependency On OTAs - HanamiHotel.Com

9 ways to increase hotels’ online bookings & lower dependency on OTAs

Customers are increasingly booking hotel rooms through OTA channels as the Internet grows in popularity. However, the hotel faces numerous risks as a result of this online booking. Follow Hanami‘s article, “9 ways to increase hotels’ online bookings & lower dependency on OTAs” to find out!

Why shouldn’t we rely on OTA bookings?

OTA is currently the savior of many hotels; They have a large number of customers, and OTA has brought them a significant source of revenue. However, there are some reasons why hotels should avoid relying too heavily on OTA channels.

When a customer makes a reservation through an OTA, the OTA will be the customer’s primary point of contact. Customers will reach out to you via OTA channels. As a result, you and the customer cannot communicate directly, and it is difficult to exchange all of the information that both parties require.

To attract customers, OTA channels always offer discounts. They will request a higher commission from the hotel as a result of the constant discount. As a result, the hotel makes little profit, if any at all.

lower dependency on OTAs
OTA Channels

Maintaining advertising and OTA channels is also difficult without the assistance of a channel manager. Each individual booking will result in duplicate rooms, harming the hotel’s image and brand.

Using OTAs exclusively will increase your workload. So you’ll need more staff to monitor your OTA listings, optimize them, and figure out how to get your hotel to rank highly on OTA.

9 ways to increase hotels’ online bookings & lower dependency on OTAs

Analysis of distribution channels

You must begin with analytics when strategizing distribution. This begins with gathering data from the appropriate sources. The source here can be the age group the hotel is aiming for, booking forms, and so on, and you must clearly identify your main booking source.

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You should also keep an eye on your competitors and try to figure out what strategies they are implementing.

You can also collect precise data for in-depth analysis and gain an understanding of your hotel’s target demographics and demand. As a result, you’ll be able to make better decisions and create a successful channel distribution strategy.

Effective pricing strategy

Many hotels are complaining about their website’s low conversion rate. However, they fail to notice or ignore the lower conversion rates on websites compared to OTA channels.

Setting a lower OTA rate on the hotel website would potentially cost you more direct bookings.

Enhance hotel website experience

One of the deciding factors for conversion is the experience that a customer or potential customer has on a hotel website. The more user-friendly your website is, the more likely it is to generate bookings.

online bookings
Hotel’s website

The website should have the following features:

  • Fast transmission speed
  • SEO optimization
  • Has an appealing user interface
  • Have all of the information — high-resolution photos, amenities, and so on.
  • Simple to use and navigate
  • Include the appropriate Call-to-Action (CTA) buttons in the appropriate locations.
  • Install a booking engine.

Invest in a booking engine

The booking engine enables you to easily capture and process online reservations. Moreover, you can also run loyalty and rewards programs.

When investing in a booking engine, you must stay on top of all the latest trends and keep it up to date.

Enable customers to make reservations via Facebook

Currently, Facebook has become a center for commercial activities in which many people are interested. If the hotel does not want to miss out on such a lucrative business opportunity, it should get started right away.

Make a reservation
Make a reservation via Facebook

Connect your hotel’s booking engine to Facebook. You’ll be able to secure commission-free bookings once you have that available, along with the ‘Book Now’ button.

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Retain direct customers

Offer discounts and promotions for direct bookings. For example, you can provide free meals or access to the hotel’s private areas.

Interact with customers

Communication is one of the keys to establishing a long-term relationship with your customers. The stronger the relationship, the higher your chances of getting a direct booking.

Communicate here means to maintain contact with them. Send them an email wishing them a happy birthday or festival, or inform them of special offers, rewards, and feedback (you already have their data).

Make use of paid advertising to drive more direct bookings

most important factors that contribute to your revenue. However, you must use strategic approaches to get the most out of them.

As stated in the first point, data is required. So gather and segment your data to identify guests who are more likely to book directly with you. After that, you can target them with your campaigns. You can do it with Facebook ads or Google ads.

Online advertising for hotels

Posting on social media in general is an excellent way to strengthen and promote your brand while also building relationships. It may take some time to gain traction, but with the right approach, you should be able to reap significant benefits while decreasing your reliance on OTAs.

Put effort into building brand’s image

Don’t overlook this one while implementing the other strategies. Everything else will only work if your brand image is strong and trustworthy. From serving customers to marketing your hotel on the internet, you must remain engaging, reliable, and interesting.

The more empathy you incorporate, the more you will connect with your potential customers. Branding isn’t easy, but if you want to reap the long-term benefits, you must put in the effort.

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