3 easy-to-manage guest services that can boost revenue
Jos Schaap | ROOMDEX
Hotels have lost several months of revenue; the rebound is slower than initially expected and increasing the average daily rate (ADR) is a common challenge. So, there is heightened awareness in our industry on just how important it is to make the most of every booking. At ROOMDEX, we’ve been talking a lot about the revenue lift from automated room upgrade sales. But we don’t want you to leave any money on the table, so today we look at 3 guest services that can be offered and booked through automation and which will help support your revenue recovery efforts.
Everyday guest services that can boost revenue
Pandemic or not, upselling is something that most hotels can resort to as a legitimate means to enhance revenue. Upselling gives a hotel the opportunity to suggest additional services that will not only enhance the guest’s stay but increasing hotel profitability. The rooms are ready and available, there is no need for additional arrangements, and they also have the highest margin. While this is true, a hotel is more than just rooms. There are other guest services and amenities that can be offered and booked without the hotelier lifting a finger. Here are three such examples:
Why breakfast? A policy around upselling breakfast is worthwhile to every hotelier. Not only is it an additional source of revenue, but it has positive impact on cost management with economies of scale based on the more you sell. It also allows for better operational and food and beverage (F&B) management. Pre-selling breakfast helps accurately how many people will show up, and therefore not only aids with staff planning, but also the purchase of food etc. With a consistent upselling program in place, hotels can determine KPIs with regard to expected numbers attending breakfast, in addition to other sources, such as walk-ins.
Of course, for all this to happen and to be successful, hoteliers need guests to actually book and purchase breakfast in advance. It is well known, that once on property many guests never take breakfast in the hotel. But, if it is offered to them pre-arrival, research shows that 61% of guests would book breakfast before they check in. Another report by Revinate reveals that a massive 98% of upsell revenue is made through pre-arrival emails. Therefore, a pre-arrival email is the time to upsell breakfast.
Proactively upselling breakfast can not only make a big impression on the bottom line, but it optimizes your resources. Earlier booking means better planning of staff and purchases. More pre-arrival breakfast bookings mean your staff is free to focus on servicing the remaining guests and walk-in customers. A win-win all round.
The same can be said for Parking. For many hotels, particularly in urban areas, parking spaces are often limited. More often than not they are offered on a first-come-first-served basis and cannot be guaranteed on arrival. But like breakfast, if offered pre-arrival, the hotel can plan ahead and allot a space. Again, this not only provides an easy additional source of revenue, but it also provides the guest with peace of mind knowing they have a guaranteed space waiting for them on arrival. Consequently, not only is there an opportunity to drive incremental revenue but provides a positive experience, increasing guest satisfaction.
Data also shows that if you can extend relevant offers pre-arrival, like parking and breakfast, chances of conversion are much higher. Guests tend to be more committed to their reservation, which leads to fewer cancellations.
- A memento
On check-out there is still time to upsell to your guest. This is an opportune time to promote return offers such as a discount or free breakfast for their next stay. Enticing customers to return with special offers helps strengthen the guest relationship, and there’s no fulfilment.
It doesn’t even have to be that complex or excessive. The “memento” could be something as simple as a souvenir with the hotel name offered prior to day of departure. Many people traveling without their kids like to take something back as a small gift when they return, but so often can’t get to it for one reason or another. The hotel becomes a hero to a grateful parent on the road.
The bottom line – upsell.
Hotels have many perishable products and services. Through upselling, hotels have a significant opportunity to capture, and capitalize on these as an additional source of revenue. As a large part of the cost are fixed, a lot of that revenue will make its way to your bottom line. Not doing so is like leaving a rich resource virtually untapped, and that’s just not good business sense.