Of course, 2018 was not without it’s challenges and 2017 was always going to be a tough act to follow, but by most accounts last year was received positively for the hospitality industry in Europe.
The results across our European client-base were strong and despite some uncertainty over 2019, the infectious enthusiasm of hoteliers leaves us excited about what the industry can achieve in the coming year.
To better understand 2018 European hotel digital performance we evaluated data from 80 DAYS Benchmark, our free benchmarking tool. At a glance performance stats show:
- The average website conversion rate of European hotels in 2018 was 1.06%
- The average website traffic of European hotels in 2018 was 249,512 sessions
Contact us to see how this breaks down for the 3-star, 4-star and 5-star markets.
In addition, to help illustrate the opportunities available, we took a brief look at some of the 2018 highlights for 5 European city markets; London, Paris, Berlin, Amsterdam and Geneva.
Despite concerns about supply exceeding demand, London is still the 2nd most attractive European city for hotel investment according to a recent Deloitte survey of 120 senior hospitality figures.
While RevPAR grew in 2018, there are concerns about 2019 with supply potentially exceeding demand and uncertainty surrounding Brexit.
Illustrating the potential for those embracing digital marketing, one 80 DAYS client; a well established upper-end 4-star group with 3 properties in the city, grew their online revenue by 20% in 2018, while a new website for another client resulted in 25% growth in revenue year-on-year.
Despite a number of challenges in 2018; the insolvency of Air Berlin in late 2017 impacting tourism numbers, a growth in hotel supply and a rise in the sharing economy, Berlin still enjoyed a positive 2018 with RevPAR growth of just over 1%. The future looks promising too, with PwC forecasting that Berlin’s RevPAR should grow 2.0% in 2019.
The new Brandenburg Airport is expected to open in late 2020 will undoubtedly help to support new international traveller growth. However, with an impressive pipeline of 6,500 new rooms, Berlin’s hoteliers will have to work hard to attract guests in the years ahead.
One particular highlight for a Berlin-based client of 80 DAYS (a 4-star city centre hotel) was increasing their organic revenue by 60% in 2018.
Recently highlighted as the most attractive European city for new hotel investment, Amsterdam enjoyed a buoyant 2018, with strong year-on-year RevPAR growth, despite concerns around overtourism.
One 4-star hotel in the centre of Amsterdam, a client of 80 DAYS, saw fantastic results through Metasearch advertising in 2018 – revenue from Google increased 371%!
Paris saw strong signs of recovery going into 2018, with new hotel supply and a gradual return of international travellers – tourist numbers increasing 7.8% in Q4 2017 according to STR data. This momentum is expected to continue into 2019, with PwC forecasting that “robust gains [in RevPAR] are expected”.
In further positive news for Paris, it ranked 3rd most attractive city in Europe for hotel investment in Deloitte’s 2018 European Hotel Investment Survey and indeed France (along with Spain and Greece) are perceived to be in the upturn of an investment cycle.
Our clients in Paris enjoyed a strong year, with one very high end city centre 5-star hotel enjoying 27% growth in direct revenue year-on-year and 34% growth in revenue from paid channels (PPC, display and Metasearch).
Another of our 5-star Parisian clients saw a 54% increase in bookings alongside a 101% increase in revenue!
Another good performer in 2018, Geneva enjoyed RevPAR growth while airport investment and modernisation are on the horizon to help grow passengers to a projected 25 million by 2030.
Rates are strong in Geneva (and Zürich), as HVS noted last year; “Europe’s most highly prized cities in terms of hotel values per room remain Paris, London, Zürich, Geneva and Rome”.
2018 was particularly successful for one of our clients in Geneva, a 5-star hotel on the shores of Lake Geneva, that saw a 93% increase in bookings and 40% increase in revenue during the year.
Driving the hospitality industry forward
One of the key takeaways from 2018 for hoteliers; it’s becoming increasingly challenging to encourage a guest to book direct with both the wealth of channels and accommodation options now available to them.
And as a report from November 2018 notes, the hotelier’s challenge is complex;
“Picking the optimal solution often involves a complicated balancing act that must prioritize among competing opportunities like spending more on digital marketing and hotel technology, increasing direct bookings and lowering commission costs, all while ensuring the highest possible occupancy rates.”
Deciding upon an optimal distribution strategy can be incredibly challenging. As an agency we’ve focused our attention on offering solutions and channels that typically drive direct bookings at a lower effective commission than OTAs, with the potential to attract a far more engaged guest who’ll have a higher customer lifetime value.
Now is the time for hoteliers to innovate and use all the tools, agencies and partners at their disposal to help drive the industry forward.
Can 80 DAYS help you?
Looking for support with creative or digital marketing for your hotel? We have offices in London, Edinburgh, Marbella and Dubai and would love to speak to you.
This post originally appeared on the 80 DAYS website and is reproduced with their permission.