Across the hospitality and travel industry, technology continues to transform the way people do business.
If your property is not adapting with the times, chances are you will be left in the dust as your competitors capture the most motivated and interested travellers from across the globe.
One system that is absolutely essential is a channel manager. Here are 7 reasons why your hotel needs the help of this technology.
1. It will increase your online bookings
Skift recently released a report, sponsored by SiteMinder, that noted an 8% decrease in telephone bookings for hotels, while online bookings increased by more than 7%.
It’s clear that online bookings are the future and a channel manager will put your hotel in the best place to accept online bookings from all the distribution channels your hotel connects to online.
2. It can improve your brand recognition online
Through a robust channel manager, hundreds of online travel agencies (OTAs) will want to partner with you because your inventory is that much more accurate.
In turn, you will have access to a multitude of guests looking to book rooms online.
The end result is that your visibility and recognition improves amongst both agents and travellers.
3. It will boost direct bookings
While many people think of a channel manager as a great way to connect with the all-powerful OTAs, it also can increase your direct bookings.
Your guests may research various hotel options on an OTA site, but once they discover your brand, they will head to your website in order to finalise their booking. This is what’s known as ‘The Billboard Effect’.
4. It virtually eliminates the risk of overbookings and double bookings
A diverse and eclectic distribution network is necessary in order to maximise your bookings and sell as many rooms as possible.
The only way to partner with as many agents as possible – without the risk of overbooking or double-bookings – is through a channel manager.
A channel manager automates availability, rates, and inventory updates in real-time, so guests can only book rooms that are actually available.
5. It means you no longer have to update your inventory manually
Your staff don’t have to deal with the time-consuming task of manually updating your inventory.
When a room is booked, your inventory is automatically updated across your entire distribution network as well as your own website.
6. It unifies your other systems
A modern channel manager will be able to integrate with your existing property management system, central reservation system, or revenue management system – allowing you to have one central hub for all of your hotel’s operations.
Such real-time integrations keep everything in sync and lower your cost of acquisition. They connect your hotel synergistically to all the systems needed to drive revenue, processing everything from reservations and guest information to check-in and check-out times.
You can then use your channel manager data to adjust your strategy accordingly – reduce availability, close out rooms, or increase rates on the channels that generate the least revenue – in favour of those that are more profitable.
7. The proof is in the pudding
Many hotels that have adopted channel managers are reaping the benefits of increased productivity and revenue.
For example, The Observatory Hotel, a 4.5-star hotel in Australia, achieved a 300% growth in direct bookings over a period of 12 months by using SiteMinder’s Channel Manager and integrated booking engine.