Hotel revenue managers aren't happy with their incentive compensation plans, but a new study commissioned by HSMAI points to ways to improve these plans with techniques that for the most part require only incremental investments by hotel owners and operators. In a survey of 522 HSMAI members in revenue management in North America, just 20% of sales executives and 18% of revenue managers reported being likely to recommend their incentive compensation plans to other colleagues or peers.
If you ask most people, they’d say they weren’t getting paid enough. But in the case of revenue managers, it’s hard to argue. Is there a more important position on property that can affect the bottom-line success of a hotel?
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Startup offers hotel bookings via text
TextHotel says consumers can book 400,000 hotels around the world simply by texting their needs 24/7 to reservation professionals who will hook them up with confirmed reservations. While the booking service is free to consumers, there's no indication on the service's web page what commission hotels must pay to accept reservations.
Protecting yourself from the potential downturn
The author recounts some basic tenets of revenue management strategy, with the thought that hoteliers need to be prepared when and if another downturn appears.
OTA consolidation presents challenges, opportunities
Even though business is strong, hoteliers don't necessarily have the upper hand as OTA consolidation has created two powerful players. Again, the situation is toughest for independent hotels and small collections of properties. One savvy independent operator, Bashar Wali of Provenance Hotels, says the key is nurturing relationships with OTAs, not fighting with them. Patrick Bosworth wrote this column for Lodging a while back on the challenges hoteliers face as a result of OTA consolidation.
Ways to get around Google's mobile site crackdown
For the most part, brand companies were prepared for the so-called mobilegeddon, but it might still be an issue for small chains and independent hotels. One independent cited in this story was able to increase mobile traffic by 156% by instituting a few relatively simple upgrades to its site, including adding a 'mobile friendly' tag on the homepage and segregating video content so it only plays on desktops and tablet.
Tips to boosting consumer usage of your mobile app
Every hotel company must have a mobile strategy, and that often encompasses an app solution. Building and maintaining an app isn't enough to ensure success, suggests the author. He provides five tips to make sure your app is a favorite among your target customers:
New specialty OTA readies for launch
DHISCO is partnering with Nustay.com to launch a new online travel agency that will tailor personal hotel deals to consumers who use the site. Using algorithms to calculate what specific guests will pay as extras while onsite, the OTA will craft and offer personalized discounts at four- and five-star hotels.
It's not magic; it's predictive analytics
While this article is more consumer-facing than industry-facing, it presents a solid overview of the history, current trends and future possibilities for predictive analytics, the science of combining big data with external factors and some gut reactions to produce travel pricing. It’s a good summary of how we approach the hotel industry and demand forecasting and pricing.
Travel sellers need a new mind-set: A recommendation culture
A fascinating report from Deloitte in the UK contends travel marketers need a new mind-set to succeed in the digital world. As consumers increasingly rely on review sites to plan their travel, they have become content creators instead of content consumers. This shift results in price becoming the main factor driving leisure travel decisions and travel comparison sites becoming more important.
Chinese OTA adds hotel supply
eLong, the Chinese-based online travel agency, increased its hotel room count to 280,000 at the end of Q1. That compares to 180,000 the same time last year. And while supply is growing, its bookings are flat: 9.3 million roomnights in Q1 vs. 9.4 million in the last quarter of 2014. Also, revenues are slowing, down 7% this quarter due to increase use of coupons and other discounts.