It is a well-known fact that the most efficient way to sell your rooms is through your own booking engine. This way you do not have to pay any OTA fees. Yet, most rooms always get booked via online travel agencies and this hurts your revenue. OTAs, however, can be very powerful allies to your business and the most important channel for your hotel to become visible to the world. And all it takes is to create more effective OTA profiles. Here’s how you can achieve this goal:
Keep your OTA profiles up-to-date
Providing up-to-date information to OTAs is essential because guests always look for it. An all-round PMS platform with well-integrated channel manager here can save you a lot of efforts by automatically updating your rates and availability in real time across all your OTA profiles. It would also be a great thing if all your OTA profiles show recently given rates and positive reviews of your property. Guests like to read lots of first-hand information before they book so provide them with what they need. This will also singnificantly increase your chance of getting more bookings. You can also add a web link that leads directly to your website, so guests can bookg a room directly through your website instead of the OTA.
Add high quality photos
I bet you’ve heard the saying “A picture is worth a thousand words”. So why not use this wisdom for your own benefit and add great-looking photos to your OTA profiles? If you don’t have any, simply find a professional photographer to take at least several awesome pics. Showing wonderful pictures of your property online will create excellent first impressions and increase the number of bookings you receive. The same pictures can be used on your website, too.
Use SEO practices
Just like Google, OTAs use various algorithms to rank hotels on their websites, so it is in your best interest to employ various effective SEO practices that will keep your property at the top of the search results. Keeping a close eye on the algorithms your OTAs use is always a good practice. This way when such changes occur, you can adjust your SEO strategy accordingly.
Make OTA managers your advisors
If possible, try to create productive and professionally-oriented relationships with the marketing managers working at the online travel agencies you use. With time they will get to know you and they can give you advice how to make your profile more attractive and improve your property. This can turn out to be crucial information that may take you to long-term success.
Offer price cuts or promotions
It may not be obvious but a large number of people usually look for last-minute deals, promotions or price cuts. Offering such deals will make your marketing strategy more flexible and increase the number of your guests. The tricky moment here is to identify periods with greatest guest activity and adjust your rates. Another good idea is to offer games with prizes. Either way the goal in mind should be to attract more guests.
Sometimes it takes just a few simple steps to be more successful. This is especially true when it comes to OTAs. They are not the necessary evil - instead they can be a great business partner. All you need is to improve your OTA profiles in the best way possible and then watch how guests start coming in large numbers to you.
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About Clock Software
Clock Software is a global provider of cloud-based property management systems (PMS), integrated online distribution, online & kiosk hotel self check-in solutions and mobile & in-room guest engagement systems with customers in more than 65 countries.