The Mews Blog > Best 15 ideas to enhance hotel guest experience
If you’re looking for ideas to enhance the hotel guest experience, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to tell you that the small details do matter, and that going the extra mile to create a guest-centric operation will without a doubt have an important repercussion on your brand reputation and customer loyalty.
While providing a top-notch experience isn’t rocket science, it’s important to understand the basics of guest satisfaction in order to deliver those quality experiences that lead guests to repeat. We’ll look at 15 simple ways to improve the hotel guest experience and tell you why it’s important. So, keep reading to find out more.
Why is it important to enhance hotel guest experience?
Enhancing the hotel guest experience through different means is crucial in order to enforce your hotel’s brand identity, position your hotel among the competition, potentiate guest retention, increase sales and revenue, and continue to grow. The better the experience, the more likely guests are to leave a review, which in turn generates more traffic. It’s a win-win.
It’s important to enhance the experience throughout all touchpoints with your brand, whether it be when they book, before they arrive, upon arrival, during their stay and long after they’ve left. What makes an experience better than another, is creating an integral, cohesive journey with your brand, that leaves your hotel at the front of their minds when it comes time to book again.
15 super simple ways and ideas to improve hotel guest experience
There are so many ways to improve the experience at your hotel. To make sure you’re exceeding these expectations, it’s a good idea to continuously evaluate and improve the guest experience. Here are some quick, easy and inexpensive tips to improve the hotel guest experience that will have lasting results.
1. Touch base with guests’ pre-arrival
A detailed pre-arrival email to all guests can make their arrival and check-in process much smoother. Not all your guests will read the email beforehand, but those who tend to ask a lot of questions are likely to. You can consider adapting the pre-arrival email to different types of guests or to different times of the year for a more personalized experience.
Learn more about creating guest profiles.
2. Provide an early check-in option
Early check-in is one of the easiest ways to improve the guest experience. It’s simply about giving them an option that will best adapt to their schedule. Whether they want to come to unwind before a busy meeting schedule, or if their plane arrives at dawn, allowing guests the flexibility to check in early is without a doubt a quick and easy way to boost satisfaction levels. Find out how early check-in can boost revenue.
3. Ensure a seamless check-in process
A seamless check-in is another key to creating a positive guest experience. There’s nothing like getting off a long plane ride and then having to wait on a long line to check in. Consider offering mobile check-in or self-service kiosks to expedite the process. The smoother it is, the happier your customers will be. It’s a fact. Of course, machines should never fully replace people; be sure to have enough staff on hand at all times to facilitate the whole process.
4. A smile goes a long way
First impressions make a big difference in this business. Kicking off the arrival and check-in experience on the right foot will not only make your guests feel appreciated, but also establish the tone for the rest of their stay. When you check the arrivals each day, take the time to review the names and reservation details, and be sure to greet everyone by name and with a welcoming smile.
Want to score some bonus points? Then why not go one step further and add a welcome refreshment, such as a local drink or snack. Even a cool drink of water can make a huge difference after a series of plane, train and taxi rides.
5. Make it easy for your guests to get in touch
How you execute this tip depends on your clientele and the size of your hotel, but as a general rule, making communication as streamlined as possible will always impress customers. If you have an older, more traditional customer base, they may prefer to use a phone system in the hotel to get in touch with reception.
If your clientele is younger and more tech-savvy, consider investing in a simple app or online communication service for your property. This ensures guests can directly message staff from their smartphones wherever they are in the hotel. Modern Property Management Systems can offer this functionality, connecting with various services that allow guests to make requests and get responses in record time.
6. Be an insider of your local area
When your guests arrive in their room, there should be a welcome book waiting for them. While historically this has contained all the what’s and how-to’s of the property and services, it should also include tips on what to see in the area, as well as recommendations on the best time to go and hidden gems that only the locals know about.
It doesn’t have to be a welcome book in a traditional sense – this is the 21st century after all. Why not go digital? Mews Marketplace is home to some great apps that help you to curate the guest experience, providing specialized tips per location and lots of upselling and cross-selling opportunities.
7. Build partnerships with local vendors and attractions
Building partnerships with local attractions and vendors is a win-win for both sides. You’ll bring more people to their business while offering your guest an inside track they will appreciate. If you promise to send many guests through the doors of the restaurant or attraction you’re partnering with, they may even be able to provide your guests with a special discount.
8. Offer personalized stays to guests
Personalization is at the heart of positive guest experiences. By adapting to guest preferences and desires, they will feel more welcome, creating a better overall perception of your hotel brand. Whether it’s a welcome note on the bed, or a “little something” in the room based on guest preferences, a little detail will go a long way. Read more about personalization.
9. Provide free and fast Wi-Fi
Charging guests for Wi-Fi should be a thing of the past. Should you not be able to provide free Wi-Fi in every room or hotel area due to technical limitations or the size of your property, make it as easy as possible for your guests to connect to the Wi-Fi where it is available. Ensure you also tell guests about the Wi-Fi situation as they check in, so they don’t have to ask. Everyone will appreciate the opportunity to connect.
10. Celebrate special occasions
Are your guests celebrating a special occasion like an anniversary or a birthday while staying with you and are happy for the occasion to be recognized? Guests will usually let you know prior to their stay if they are – in fact, they’re often angling for a freebee of some sort. Either way, it’s always worth asking whether there will be a special celebration during their stay – you can do so in the guest’s booking confirmation email prior to arrival.
11. Track your guests’ preferences
Does your guest have a gluten intolerance or a favorite room? Sending an email prior to their arrival asking if there are any special requests or allergies within the party will ensure that the guest feels truly catered for. If you opt for an app, you can collect these basic details through this technology from either a box-ticking survey or question and answer box when confirming the booking. In Mews Commander, there’s a helpful ‘notes’ section, where your front of house staff (or any user) can add anything specific about the reservation.
12. Give guests the option to refuse housekeeping – and reward them for doing so
More and more guests are becoming environmentally conscious when they travel. Many are abandoning the mindset that sheets and towels need to be changed every day, which is good for the environment and also good for you as it cuts laundry costs.
Leave a note in the room that tells guests what their options are. For example, some hotels provide a small bag that guests can hang on the door, and housekeeping will leave a small treat inside instead of changing their towels and sheets. Alternatively, you could offer things like a free drink from the minibar or a free slice of pizza or beer from your bar/restaurant.
13. Develop strategies for resolving guest complaints in hotels
No hotel is perfect, and it’s only a matter of time before you have a complaint, so make sure you’re prepared. Make sure your staff knows what to do if they get a complaint and who to go to should they need to escalate the problem. Set up regular satisfaction questionnaires, whether through your virtual concierge or via push notifications. This way you can get a barometer on how your guests are doing and if there is anything they need from you.
14. Offer clear directions around the property
Put yourself in the shoes of a new guest and evaluate the signage around the property, especially in the elevator. Could you be giving more information? Writing in another language or adding easy-to-understand symbols can make getting around much easier. Your guests will appreciate being able to find where they need to go at all times.
15. Seek feedback from guests
Don’t be afraid to ask guests throughout their stay how their stay is going and if there is anything you can do to improve it. Simply asking will go a long way because it shows that you care. You should also be prepared with solutions to mitigate any negative feedback you get. Most importantly, train your staff that the guest is (almost) always right.
We’ve looked at the importance of enhancing the guest experience and 15 ideas to enhance hotel guest experience. No matter which ideas you choose, the key is to create a lasting impression so that guests keep coming back time and time again. After all, meeting and exceeding your guests’ expectations is the gold standard of the hospitality industry.
Understanding the modern guest
We touched upon this briefly in point eight – tracking your guests' preferences – but the more you know about your guest, the more you'll understand what remarkable means to them.
Our guide to Understanding the Modern Guest takes a look at how expectations have changed and what your property can do to keep guests coming back.
Hospitality hot takes straight to your inbox
Sign up to our monthly newsletter for industry insights, product news, partner updates and more.