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Hoteliers say “Being bookable and visible online is our No. 1 business focus”

  • Published by Ozgur Tore

hotel internetA report by the global hotel industry’s leading cloud platform, SiteMinder, has found that the ability to grow direct bookings and online presence is the top business focus for hotels this year. According to the report, the ability to increase direct bookings and grow online presence is a higher business priority for hoteliers than mobile bookings or personalisation to enhance the guest experience.

The paradox, SiteMinder says, is that in spite of 95 percent of respondents ranking ‘driving guests to book direct’ as a challenge, only 37 percent nominated ‘exploring new hotel technology and systems’ as a high priority for their hotel business.

“The results of SiteMinder’s inaugural Global Hotel Business Index is, again, evidence of the desire among hotels to maximise online channels and grow their business, but also the contradictory hesitation among them to try new technology that can support that effort. What hoteliers struggle to realise is that you can’t prioritise one without the other,” says Mike Ford, managing director at SiteMinder.

“Outdated technology and systems – and the high costs that typically come with those – are rampant in our industry. As the consumers, hoteliers are in a unique position to change that. However, it is on us, as an industry, to understand the reasons for these sentiments and to make our technology more affordable, more accessible and ultimately more beneficial for the hoteliers we design the technology for.”

Over the 12 months ending June 2016, hotel customers of SiteMinder generated US$16 billion in revenue using the company’s cloud-based booking and distribution technology – a 116 percent rise from the same period two years prior. Of the US$16 billion, US$1.05 billion was made through SiteMinder’s direct booking engine, TheBookingButton, to represent a 43 percent year-on-year increase.

Mike Ford says, “We are clearly witnessing an unprecedented rise in online bookings – both direct and via third party channels. With the ability to be set up within days and pay a flat monthly fee as little as £28 ongoing, SiteMinder’s solutions are examples of how simple it can be for hoteliers to achieve their desire of increasing direct bookings and growing their presence online, and forego the perception that driving guests to book direct is a challenge.”

The finding, documented in SiteMinder's Global Hotel Business Index 2017 released today, is based on more than 2,100 survey responses from hoteliers at both independent properties and hotel groups around the world.

SiteMinder’s Global Hotel Business Index also examines what keeps hoteliers passionate everyday, how closely they watch their competition, and the industry trends they believe will accelerate in the next 10 years.

Download the report free at siteminder.com/resources.

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