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A hotel competition analysis is fundamental in the hospitality industry because the success of your hotel depends on getting things right, such as timing, price and targeting the right audience. A competitor analysis starts by understanding who your competition is in the nearby area who are offering the same products and services as your structure in order to make more informed decisions.
To carry out the perfect analysis, you must first define your goals, determine what data you need, identify your direct competition, collect and analyze the data, and then set up milestones to see your progress. In this article, we’ll go into more detail about what this kind of analysis is, why it’s important, and how to do it in order to devise a winning strategy that will help set you apart from the competition.
What is hotel competition analysis?
A competitor analysis is a way of looking at hotels in the same area and price range and evaluating their services against your own products. This will help you make decisions in order to plan for the future. By doing so, you can look at the services they offer, the prices and other factors that will help your hotel assess how well they’re doing against the competition.
This is where a comp set comes in handy as well. A comp set is a group of five or six hotels that potential guests are comparing your property against when choosing where to book. Generally you would want to look at hotels in the nearby area, but of course there are other factors to consider.
Why should you perform a hotel competition analysis?
Performing a competition analysis is key to beating out the competition. Only once you have fully understood who your competitor is, what they offer, and how they offer it, can you devise a plan to do it better. This practice will not only help you improve your services but it will also help you devise a scalable plan of action in case of future expansion.
Furthermore, a thorough analysis will allow you to define your hotel’s unique value proposition in order to have an advantage over neighboring hotels, as well as help you understand your hotel’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats – also known as SWOT analysis, which we’ll discuss momentarily.
How can you carry out competitor analysis?
Now let’s take a look at the different steps needed in order to carry out a competitor analysis.
Start with a SWOT analysis
As mentioned earlier, a SWOT analysis is an exercise that can be used to define a measurable plan of action. By understanding what your strengths and weaknesses are as a structure, you can then identify what threats are presented by the competition, in order to turn those threats into opportunities. While strengths and weaknesses should be addressed based on your own property, opportunities and threats should be defined based on the external factors.
Threats should be considered based on what other hotels have that you don’t, such as amenities and services, or understanding why hotels might be gaining more business over yours. Try to use your learnings from the SWOT analysis to identify where your weaknesses lie and how you can overcome them in order to attract more business than your competitors. These can also be listed as opportunities.
Reviews are a great source of information that can be used to understand how the competition works, what guests like about them and what they don’t like. Use this information strategically to understand where their failings are in order to do it better.
Are guests complaining about customer service? Then make sure you offer 5-star service that goes above and beyond. Is the competition offering services you don’t offer? Then start thinking about how you can make the same offering but do it even better. Read more here about how to boost your trip advisor rankings. Having an edge against the competition in your reviews will without a doubt help boost your bookings.
Pricing is everything
Nothing is more important in doing a competitor analysis than understanding their pricing strategy. Having the right price will make or break your business and even a slight variation from your competitor might prevent you from getting bookings. This is why it’s key to pinpoint the competition’s pricing strategy, monitoring their prices and keeping an eye on when they lower or raise their prices in order to follow suit.
An important part of pricing strategy is having a tool that will take care of revenue management and allow you to change prices and maximize profits, which is where hotel property management software is fundamental.
Beyond pricing strategies and reputation management, understanding how the competitor uses their online presence in order to increase visibility is key. There are so many factors you can look at that will help you make important decisions for your own online presence.
For example, you can see what OTAs they are advertising on and choose to list your property on the same ones, or choose to list your business on the other ones where they’re not listed. Furthermore, you can check out what their Google My Business profile looks like, and be sure to optimize your own listing to compete against theirs.
You can also monitor the competition’s social media presence to see what kind of tone they are using, and see what kind of promotions they are offering in order to facilitate direct bookings. Learn more about social media marketing strategies to beat out the competition.
Carrying out the perfect hotel competition analysis is no easy task, but by following the steps laid out in this article, you’ll be one step ahead of the game. Start by identifying your hotel’s comp set, and from there carry out a SWOT analysis to understand where your opportunities and strengths lie in order to amplify these strengths, and capitalize on the opportunities. After carrying out the SWOT analysis you can look at the competition’s online presence, reputation and their pricing strategies.
Look at nearby properties that are listed on Google or OTAs and get to know these properties inside and out so that you can know who your competition is like the back of your hand – and know what you need to do to have a competitive edge. This competitive edge will allow you to increase visibility and as a result boost bookings. Truly understanding the competition is key to defining your winning strategies to be a successful business.
Eva has over a decade of international experience in marketing, communication, events and digital marketing. When she's not at work, she's probably surfing, dancing, or exploring the world.
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