We understand that the hospitality industry is going through an uncertain time and concerns will undoubtedly be raised regarding the short and long-term impact this dip may have on your hotel. So, we’ve put together these notes on best practices to help you, our customer, take care of your business during COVID-19.
Assessing and adjusting your pricing strategy
In an ideal world, It would certainly be a great thing to maintain your usual level of business during this difficult time, but the reality many hoteliers are facing is a slow-down of usual demand due to the disruption to the travel market, travel bans and the wider public’s health concerns.
However, this is not your usual ‘low-patch’ where a knee-jerk price drop would equal more bookings. As the overall demand is currently much lower, there are a couple of strategies you could implement to boost your bookings:
- Do some market research – If other properties of a similar grading to you have lowered their rates slightly it may be sensible for you to do so as well, but try to accompany it with a marketing strategy set to target the ‘staycation’ market. Try to really drive sales into a sector of travellers who are still interested.
- Rather than a ‘blanket drop’ of changes, try making adjustments on a more granular level by utilising occupancy-based pricing or sperate plans for specific room types.
- If you would like more guidance on how you can use our rates module to adjust your strategy for the next few months, please get in touch with our support team who can provide refresher training for you and all staff, as well as steering you in the best direction for your property and booking longevity.
Make the most of the (however unwanted) downtime
‘Downtime’ is the best time to review your business as a whole. A new coat of paint? Wallpaper to be replaced? Perhaps you could even go so far as to get a social media strategy in place for once you’re back into the swing of things. Whilst we know that this is inevitably a low-point for the business, positives can be found when you utilise this time to get your business in the best position possible, come the busier months.
Assess and optimise your hotel operations
Penny-pinching really can add up, especially since we don’t know how long the current climate will last. Consider reducing the operating hours of your restaurants, bars and any leisure facilities you may have as needed. Perhaps you could offer a ‘takeaway’ service, rather than an eat-in option? If you have flexible staff, you could consider altering their working shifts to suit a lower volume of guests, so long as this does not compromise your level of service and new well-being policies.
Review your policies and be flexible
We’ve said it many times before and we’ll say it again; a free cancellation or a deferred stay policy in this time of uncertainty makes the world of difference to your guests and will boost their confidence when booking with you.
Be prepared for when this all is over
Be ready for the rebound! This climate will not last forever and once quarantine and travel restrictions are lifted there’ll be an influx of customers from all around. Consider it a pseudo new-start and put your best hotel foot forward. If you’re re-branded or you’re getting serious on social media, that’ll be a great time to test out the new look for your business.