Welcome to the world of hotel commerce. We have reached a point within the industry where some big cogs are clicking into place, giving hoteliers like you the opportunity to have more control over your business than ever before.
Your first question might be what is hotel commerce and why should I suddenly care?
The answer to both lies in the pressing needs of modern hoteliers – meeting ever increasing demands in the same 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, that you’ve always had to get things done.
Hotel commerce is the concept of running your business to a higher standard, with much less effort than has been required in the past. The application manages it all from a single place and automates tedious tasks, taking pressure away from your busy schedule.
We have a question too – Is your tech stack in a place where it can conquer these challenges?
Let us help you with the answer…
What is hotel commerce?
Hotel commerce is the ability to deliver products and services to guests that offer convenience, personalisation, and value at speed. The result is that you are firmly in the driver’s seat, with more control over all aspects of your business online.
It used to be easy to distinguish commerce from e-commerce. Bricks-and-mortar meant commerce, online marketplaces meant e-commerce. Nowadays there is no line between the two, as virtually every business distributes their brand, products, or services online.
And the online channel only continues to grow and diversify, with e-commerce in the US alone amounting to almost $470 billion in 2021.
Hotel commerce recognises this reality, reducing the daily limits you have on selling inventory, maximising revenue, and allows you to feel like you’re truly holding the wheel on your journey.
Ultimately hotel commerce, and more specifically hotel commerce platforms, can enable your business to run with the same principles as major e-commerce players such as:
- Or Booking.com
Let’s look more closely at the benefits of adopting hotel commerce.
What does hotel commerce solve for accommodation providers?
The industry has historically had a lot of disparate systems and fragmented data for hoteliers to navigate, not to mention new external challenges such as staff shortages and economic pressures.
Added to this are the changes in traveller behaviours, motivations, and preferences. The steps forward by e-commerce giants such as Amazon mean your guests are now expecting similar levels of service from every online interaction.
Hotel commerce adds plenty of benefits and eliminates many of your pain points.
- Removing limitations on how you sell and market your property
- Offering more opportunities to maximise revenue
- Turning a lack of control into complete control over your operations
- Fragmented data becoming centralised data, accessible in real-time
- Getting the most out of resources, experts, and tech solutions
- Enhancing the guest experience via increased personalisation, responsiveness, and added value
As we mentioned, time is of the essence in today’s world and while running an accommodation business in 2022 will never be ‘simple’, you can meet the complexity confidently with hotel commerce.
Best practices for hotel commerce success
Performance at your hotel will only be fully realised when it can be successfully managed from one place, not in parts.
It’s time to evaluate where your business stands. Where are you on your journey, as you try to evolve from simply doing some marketing and distribution to embracing the world of online commerce?
Ask yourself if you are set up to:
- Automate and balance your inventory distribution across your direct and indirect booking channels
- Access all top performing booking channels in your market
- Capture high value travellers via top global distribution systems
- Collect more direct reservations and guest relationships via metasearch channels such as Google Hotel Ads
- Build and showcase your brand to attract the guests you’re looking for
- Earn more direct revenue with commission-free bookings, upsell offers, time or market specific deals and promotions
- Increase conversions with quick and easy booking processes
- Control and strengthen guest relationships with personalised communications and more direct bookings
- Easily manage your critical business processes and performance, such as distribution, marketing, bookings and payments
- Automate booking and guest information with two-way property management system integrations
- Make fast and informed decisions by using real-time data and insights
- Process payments, refunds, and invoices with secure and convenient payment options
- Ensure access to an ecosystem of hotel systems that can adapt to your business needs
- Access innovative apps to drive profit, improve guest experiences, and boost loyalty
- Find local experts in your market to lean on for guidance
- Work with a tech partner that can accommodate your hotel at any stage of growth, with the resources to help you thrive
It’s a lot of bases to cover, right? This picture is exactly why many hoteliers are overwhelmed – and why it can be hard to feel in control.
These requirements, brought on by today’s new set of challenges and expectations, cannot be met without getting your tech stack in order and working with partners that truly understand your business.
It’s all very well to set goals but if you’re trying to achieve success with too many moving parts, one of them is bound to break down.
Using a hotel commerce platform, such as SiteMinder, gives you all the capabilities you need in one place – one central control panel to run your hotel 24/7 with no fuss. SiteMinder gives you flexible pathways to start, upgrade or scale your hotel business, on your terms.