One of the best ways to increase your hotel’s revenue is by using a multi-pronged approach to increase income while also decreasing your expenses.
As a hotel owner, you’re always looking for a way to increase your revenue. This usually means finding a way of being close to or at capacity every night, which can be difficult. During the week, if there’s not a major event going on, there may be very few visitors in town. Even if there is a big event, you’re competing with a number of other hotels. One solution some hotel owners come up with is instead of increasing incoming revenue, they look to decrease their costs. This can work, but it’s not always easy to do. Why not look at both? Using a multi-prong approach can be the secret to improving your bottom line. Here are some ways you can incorporate such an approach to your plans for improving your bottom line.
If your employees are spending all their time on the phone, they’re not able to get much else done. Often, your front staff has to juggle taking phone reservations and answering questions with helping the guests who are standing in front of them. This can irritate customers, especially if they have to wait for several minutes, and lead them to choose a different hotel for their next visit. Outsourcing your calls to a call center that has professional sales staff can help improve your employees’ efficiency as well as improve your sales. The professionals at the call center are trained in how to improve sales and are likely to do better in this area than your team.
Another good idea is to partner with different hotel booking websites such as Expedia. These sites may take a percentage of sales or have a monthly fee, but it’s often worth the expense. You may want to look for a website that gives you a free trial or that doesn’t require you to commit to a long-term contract at first so you can see what type of increase you see from working with them.
Improve Your Customer Service
Guests expect their rooms to be clean and comfortable. They’re not likely going to give you great reviews if you meet those expectations, and it’s often hard to improve your rooms to make them stand out over other hotel rooms. However, if your staff goes above and beyond for them, that often makes the difference. Train your team to provide outstanding customer service, even if they can’t do anything more than a smile and say hello to guests as they pass in the hallway. Everyone from your cleaning staff to the front desk manager should provide outstanding customer service every day.
Invest in Efficient Technology
Have you taken a close look at how much money you spend on electricity and other utilities every month? Chances are, you’re spending a lot of money to keep your hotel cool in the summer and warm in the winter. In fact, many hotels actually spend about half of their monthly operating budget on heating and air. There are a few things you can do here to save money, including installing an efficient HVAC system, installing LED bulbs, and using Energy Star-certified appliances. Often the cost of switching to these energy efficient devices is low enough that you make back what you spent in savings.
Create Stronger Relationships with Guests
Do you ask your guests for their email information or to like your page on social media sites? If you don’t, why not? Email newsletters and keeping up with social media can be a great way of developing relationships with your guests. If guests feel like you’re there for them and will provide them with unique opportunities to save money, they’re more likely to book your hotel again and to recommend it to others.
Create a Referral Program
One of the best ways of marketing is word of mouth. You want your happy guests to recommend your hotel to others, so why not encourage them a bit? Create a referral program that gives guests a reason to talk about your hotel to others. You can offer them discounts, free items, or any other type of incentive you think might help get the word out.
Cater to Business Professionals
Do you have a business center at your hotel? If not, that may be one reason why those traveling for business aren’t booking with you. You need to have more than just a single computer and printer, too. Business professionals may need to copy papers, send fax (yes, people still fax), and access high-speed WiFi. If you can’t offer that, you may be losing customers to your competition. Often, this equipment is fairly affordable and will be appreciated by many of your guests, not just those traveling for businesses. Everyone likes fast, reliable WiFi, after all.
Host Conferences, Weddings, and Other Special Events
If your hotel has several large conference rooms or other spaces, certainly consider renting them out for various special events. You’ll likely have most or all of the people attending those events book rooms at your hotel. The organization throwing the event is even likely to book several rooms for their conference speakers or may even book an entire block of rooms for their board of directors and other VIP attendees.
You may have to make some extra investments before you can host these events, but it’s often worth it. If you’re not quite ready to do so, look at the events that are coming up in your city and contact the organizer. You may be able to be listed as an official event hotel on their website and other promotional materials in return for offering their guests a discount. The amount you lose in discounting each room is often more than made up in the number of rooms these attendees book.
These are just a few ways you can work on improving your hotel revenue. By using a multi-pronged strategy, you’ll be able to decrease your expenses while also improving your booking rate and your income. You’ll start noticing an improvement in your bottom line fairly quickly, even if you’re only able to implement a few of these tips.