Latest hotel industry trends for your hotel’s growth
September 20, 2018 Sweta sharma
According to the hotel industry experts, the latest hotel industry trends will completely reshape the way hotels are serving their guests. Today, in this world of technology, guests are getting used to these advanced facilities. And so, they’re expecting the same with the hotel industry.
Slowing and steadily, the hotel industry is getting aware of the fact that;
In order to take advantage and stand out in the competition, it is important to stay updated with the latest trends in the hotel industry.
Therefore, with the tremendous changes in the taste and expectations of guests, all hotels (from small to large) are actively looking into the new techniques to offer the optimal guest experience.
These facts cannot be avoided and inadvertently, you as a hotelier ought to focus on the latest hotel trends which you know will help in your hotel’s growth.
The trends in the hospitality industry will help you improve loyalty and communicate better with the guests than ever before.
Here are 11 latest hotel industry trends you need to focus on:
With the growing digital channels, it is getting difficult for the hotels to give rapid response to guests’ inquiries across all channels which can lead to a revenue loss. Therefore, hotel chatbot is one of the latest technologies being used to improve experiences.
According to the IBM report, 85% of customers inquiries will be handled through Chatbot by 2020.
It means all your guests’ queries related to bookings, hotel rooms, hotel amenities, discounts and promotions, check-ins/check-outs, and more will be managed via a chatbot in the future.
Today, the hospitality industry is making the most use of chatbots that has the capacity to engage website visitors in real-time which can help in the increase of direct bookings. This way, the hotel staff can focus on providing personalized guest experience.
Mobile app for easy access
The continuous zoom-in and zoom-out will leave your potential customers frustrated. Ultimately, it’ll force your customers to leave your website and search for alternatives. Hence, in this digital era, it is vital for the hotels to offer an app that is mobile-optimized.
Many hotels are making their websites mobile-optimized. Besides, they also provide a mobile app to encourage potential customers so that they can easily perform the action. For example; book rooms and check availability, read reviews, browse through hotel services, view hotel images, and more with the help of a hotel app.
It’s one of the ongoing trends in the hotel industry to provide a seamless browsing experience to guests through smartphones. They can easily browse while on the move. Not only that but can also check whether you’re providing any offers, hosting any events, and so on through the app notifications. The hotel mobile app also lets you promote your properties and amenities in a unique and engaging way.
Digitized room keys for quick room access
This is one hotel trend you need to note. Swipe cards have been replaced with smartphones and apps to ease check-ins and reduce the loss of the key. Now, with the help of smartphones, your guests can use the digital key to speed up and efficiently undergo the check-in procedure. This is exactly what your guests need to gain instant access to their room.
After an endless day filled with meetings or traveling, the guests feel to rush to their hotel rooms to take a shower and sink into a freshly made hotel bed. But in the middle of all that chaos, finding a room key is a headache. Hence, to avoid this frustration, today several hotel brands are rapidly rolling out smartphone keys. These hotel industry trends keep you updated with the demands and needs of your guests to offer a better experience.
Self-check-in to minimize guests’ waiting time
It’s obvious that the hotels can’t ignore the modern needs of the customers. And so, the hotels should provide modern services to remain competitive in the industry.
In the era of mobile technology, hoteliers can improve both their operations and guest experience by implementing a few simple things at their property. Today, your guest doesn’t want to wait at your reception desk anymore. As the internet has become an inseparable part of their lives, hotel guests are now expecting everything digital, which is a part of the recent hotel industry trends.
Self-check-in service through kiosks and mobile guest self-service portals are gaining popularity among the top hospitality industry trends. With the implementation of such services in hotels, the guests can easily find whether their room is ready, can make requests for amenities, check their bills, update their preferences and a lot more.
In addition, to enhance customer service, wearable and face recognition are the latest technologies that your guests can use for self check-ins. Not only that, but your hotel staff can also improve back-of-the-house operations. For example, apart from enabling your guests to do self-check-ins, employees may use wearable devices and face recognition technology in clock-ins and clock-outs. The recorded data about employees’ activities at work can be further used by the management in scheduling the tasks.
Voice-activated virtual assistants for anything, and everything
Virtual assistance is one of the new customer service trends in the hospitality industry. It delivers a superior customer experience by reducing response times, streamlining multiple operations in minutes, changing room status in seconds, and more through the voice commands.
With the help of this technology, customers can easily make requests for room service, fresh towels, managing lighting, cooling, heating to ordering food and more. Now, it is all possible through one app that helps in improving personalized guests’ experience.
Hence, this feature in smartphones or standalone devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home is definitely one of the most interesting new technologies for the hotel industry.
Technology to run hotels and bring bookings
Technology has become critical to attract and retain hotel guests as a major part of the hospitality industry trends. These days, most of the hotels, serviced apartments, B&Bs, guesthouses, resorts, and even hostels are moving towards the safe haven. The reason is the simple solution that a cutting-edge technology provides to impart the best guest experience.
Therefore, most of the hotels are in the process of exploring innovative technology solutions. It’ll help them to better serve guests throughout their stay and help them remain on top of their mind.
Hotel technology solutions like;
Property management systems to manage the day-to-day of hotel operations
Hotel booking engine to increase exposure and bookings
And distribution management tools like; hotel channel manager are coming to the rescue for hotels looking to streamline their operations.
To be in the competition, hospitality solution providers that build this kind of technology frequently updates new features. Besides, they also look for new innovations to be in the competition. Hence, this advanced technology empowers hotels with better revenue management strategies and tools.
Today, customers are becoming technology savvy. And so, in future – only the best technology will survive, the one that will be easy to use and convenient for the hotel staffs. To meet escalating guests experience, maximum hotels are spending or are going to spend on technology this year.
Instant messages for direct communication
Today, one of the most notable hotel industry trends is that hotels are using instant messages as a business tool to enhance the customer experience. Instant messaging has transformed how potential guests and hotels communicate with each other.
According to a data report, more than 90% of people in the US and UK have found the hotels’ text messages useful.
Instant messaging adds a human touch to your online presence that allows potential customers to build a strong relationship with your hotel. The main benefit of an instant message is that your guests can access internal communication through their smartphone. That’s why this is said to be one of the most commendable hotel trends.
You can use your hotel PMS software to send direct messages to your customers. For example; a reminder related to their visit, offering discounts, or promoting your property to increase conversion and customer satisfaction.
Social Media for promotion
Billions of people around the world are using social media and the numbers are increasing day by day. The advanced technology has made it possible to reach out to the audience through multiple platforms.
Yet, many hotels are still lagging behind because they’re unaware of the fact that social media help hotels to promote the hotel and services. Not only that but it also gives an opportunity to attract different types of travelers at the same time. For instance; the youth, corporate business travelers, influencers, and more.
Let’s see how you can utilize social media channels according to the current hospitality industry trends:
The Social Media audience needs your response:
Hotels use Social Media not just as one among the hotel promotion ideas, but can also act as customer care to drive revenue. That means, when customers visit your hotel facebook page and share their thoughts, they expect the answer. The interaction will help you to build brand awareness and loyalty among the customers.
The online customers today shares all their travel and destination experience (with the photos like; where they went for a vacation, the hotel rooms, destination places, etc) on social media platforms for instance; Instagram and Facebook.
All these social media posts act as a reference for other people who want to go for a vacation, looking for a stay, and seeking what are the available exciting menus there. Here, the hotels have the great opportunity to get into the conversation to spread the excitement and also build relationships.
Hence, it is important for the hoteliers to convince the social media audience by highlighting experiences or guest stories online to attract customers from social media platforms.
Videos are grabbing attention:
Video marketing is becoming popular with time and has been skyrocketing in recent years. According to research, hotels will be able to attract nearly 80% of guests with video engagement.
Videos are a powerful platform to highlight the specialists of your hotels and restaurants. You can use this platform to give your customers a preview of what facilities you’re providing beforehand. For example; you can attract guests with videos of some delicious kitchen creations to entice the dining bookings or smart rooms to make them visit your hotel.
64% of the users are likely to book the rooms after watching a video.
Therefore, all hotel brands can work on creating custom videos for more guests engagement and turn them into your customers.
New technology learnings for staff
Nowadays, it is difficult to maintain the guest relationship without proper knowledge of the technology. Technology is constantly evolving. Most of the hotel technology providers are walking abreast with these trends and demands. Therefore, it is necessary for the hotel and the hotel staff to be in line with these hotel industry trends.
However, it is important to provide the right training to the right people; mainly your hotel staff as they are the ones who are interacting with the guests. Hence, it is vital for the hotel staffs to learn about the new technology and that too effectively.
With new technology learnings, it’ll get easy for the staff to interact with the guests, attend to their requests, and provide a more personalized guests’ experience with the help of technology.
Thus, today hoteliers are moving towards the technology solutions to communicate and engage with their guests. This ultimately improves guests experience – which is the ultimate goal in driving revenue and guests satisfaction.
Online reputation management for business growth
81% of online customers still read reviews on TripAdvisor, Google, Booking.com, and other trusted sites before booking a room in a hotel.
The online reputation management tool for hotels is not just a trend in 2018, but a critical requirement for every hotelier. This is because consumer behavior and booking pattern has changed greatly and will continue to change at a rapid pace in the coming times.
The digital world has made the business transparent. Thus, people now can search and compare everything based on ratings and reviews, offerings, best deals, and quality services provided by the different hotels in the market.
Reputation, recommendation, and online reviews help drive more bookings than any other factors. Hence, with the help of online reputation management, you can easily track your reputation and work on improvising your services to attract more guests at your hotel.
Influencer marketing for faster reach
Well, you can say those travel influencers are the new generation of reviewers for hotels. With the help of their travel blogs and user-generated content, they often provide a real-life experience on platforms like social media. This is one hotel industry trend you shouldn’t miss at all!
As the travel influencers give a personal touch and are known to build strong relationships with their followers, they have the power to engage your current and future guests.
Therefore, to start engaging with your target audience (i.e. your guests) it is vital to target those who have the capability to influence the decision of your guests. With the help of regular engagement – you can create positive brand awareness and build up brand loyalty.
Let them know what future deals you’re offering so that they will be able to share with their followers. Communicating with your influencers can provide you with informational data about your potential customers. For example; what are their expectations, and what facilities are exciting them the most and such likes. So, basically, approaching these influencers for your hotel marketing is one of the most effective hospitality industry trends.
So… What are you waiting for? The adoption of new technology is rapidly spreading in the hotel industry. Therefore, if you haven’t started yet, it’s a high time to embrace new challenges. Invest in these latest hotel industry trends that will surely help you turn your visitors into loyal customers by keeping them engaged.