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There are many hotel sales strategies to increase revenue, and understanding the best strategies is without doubt one of the most important things you can do as a property manager. While selling rooms is one thing, making the most profit from each room at any given time of the year is key to profitability. The secret to profitability lies in maximizing revenue, and by increasing room sales in order to have a better chance of also encouraging revenue from ancillary sources.
Of course, not every hotel is created equally, and a lot of defining a strategy that’s right for your hotel’s business will lie on your location. You will need to adapt to attract the best target audience for your business. In this article, we’ll look at the importance of sales strategies and some of the best ones to increase hotel revenue.
Why are hotel sales strategies important?
Hotels sales strategies are key in order to boost revenue independently of the season and increase the number of rooms booked. Defining the plan of action and the right path for your hotel will depend on a lot of factors such as the type of guest you’re targeting, where your hotel is located, and seasonality, among other factors.
A good hotel rate management strategy will tend to increase rates during high season and lower room prices in the low season, but there’s a lot more to it. To make the task easier, you can rely on a PMS like Mews, which allows you to optimize profits by setting rates that maximize profits.
By incorporating the right sales plan of action, you can help pave the path as a property manager towards profitability together with your everyday practices of building relationships with current, past and future customers. Special events, loyalty programs, partnerships, digital promotions and content marketing will help to grow your business but mixing these tactics together with the right sales strategies is without a doubt the recipe for success. Learn more about hotel marketing practices.
Best hotel sales strategies to increase revenue
Now let’s look more in detail at some different strategies that will help increase revenue.
A robust revenue management strategy should focus on increasing RevPAR, or revenue per available room. In order to reach this ideal rate, you can multiply your average daily rate by its occupancy rate and therefore determine what you need to charge per room based on occupancy throughout the year. This could also mean charging a higher daily rate in periods of high demand to compensate for the lower rates you charge at times of lower demand.
Loyalty and rewards programs
Loyalty and rewards programs are key to keeping guests loyal and reducing the average cost to acquire a client. A loyalty or rewards program is a way of rewarding guests with special rates, offers, gifts or promotions so that they are more likely to come back and visit your hotel. You can even consider rewarding members of your loyalty program for referring people to your hotel, offering a special discount to those guests. This creates a boomerang effect that also reduces the need to have a huge marketing budget.
Find out about the key behind a successful loyalty program.
There’s no question that group reservations are without a doubt more profitable. When private groups book at once together, not only does your operations team have less work, but groups are also less likely to cancel. You can have special cancellation policies for group reservations, such as requiring a percentage down payment to block the rooms, which will help deter people from canceling.
On the other hand, group reservations for corporate groups are even more profitable. If you have an events space, you can sell a package of a room block along with the events space. You can even contact events planners for private and corporate events to help promote these types of bookings. Furthermore, because groups are likely to pay a premium rate for reserving rooms during high season, they are more likely to book in the off-season, which is also a great way to ensure off-season revenue.
Direct sales in the hospitality industry are like gold. You get rid of the commission fees charged by OTAs and also get the most revenue per booking. This is why promoting direct sales is a great strategy for driving revenue. The best way to increase direct sales is through SEO, content marketing and social media, which are organic, and thus free ways of spreading the word about your hotel.
Read more about how to use social media to grow your business.
In addition to having a social media and SEO strategy in place, you should ensure that you have a booking engine installed on your website in order to incentivize direct bookings, because there’s nothing more frustrating for a guest than having to wait for a reservation to be confirmed. A booking engine will make it less likely for users to abandon the website after you successfully capture these guests through content marketing.
Complementary sales strategies
There are a host of other complimentary sales strategies that will also help to grow your revenue. One of those is upselling, which can either be done prior to the guest arriving or upon arrival. Prior to arrival, you may suggest an upgrade at a reduced price, a rate that includes room and board, or a discounted price for spa treatments. All of these ancillary sources will help increase the revenue per booking.
Another complementary strategy is working with influencers or forming partnerships to serve as brand ambassadors. If you correctly pinpoint the influencers that are influencing purchasing decisions for your desired target group, you are more likely to increase bookings and thereby revenue.
Remarketing is a branch of digital advertising that’s used to show targeted ads to people who have already visited your site or perhaps abandoned the website mid-booking. While there are many reasons a potential guest may choose not to book right away despite being a click away, remarketing can help ensure that that guest is not lost. Plus, it’s a great way to connect with potential guests during different phases of their buyer journey. Perhaps you didn’t have luck the first time around, but by remarketing you are more likely to close the deal.
We’ve looked at some of the key strategies to boost revenue, which can be encouraging direct bookings, group sales, loyalty programs, and a robust revenue management strategy. Together with the complementary practices we mentioned above, you’re bound to increase revenue and profitability regardless of the season.
There is no winning formula, and by no means are these sales strategies a one-size-fits-all approach. However, you can mix and match and find what works best for you and your business. By implementing different sales tactics, you will be more likely to optimize the resources used to acquire a booking and turn potential guests into lifelong clients.
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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