Selling on Booking.com

Carlo Oleiniczak, Regional Director for France, Spain and Portugal at booking.com, ESSEC Presentation

booking essec

Your property’s description on booking.com; Counter-productive practices: availability, pricing & content; Dealing with negative reviews through action plan & successful arrival & departures; Reaching for volume in quiet times; Information provided by Booking.com, the competitive set; Genius loyalty program as gateway to business travel market.

Content

1.Booking.com presentation

2.Your property’s description on booking.com

2.1 What to include

2.2 Original text for each type of room to help ranking

2.3 Guest reviews

3.Counter-productive practices

3.1 Insufficient availability updates

3.2 Pricing your property on booking.com

3.3 Poor, flowery content. Be factual & specific

3.4. Respond to all reviews

4 How can a hotel influence user reviews?

4.1 Dealing with negative reviews

4.2 Successful arrivals & departures

5. Reaching for volume in quiet times

6. Genius loyalty program for the business travel market

7. Information provided to owners by booking.com

8 Boutique hotels vs Hotel chains Inventory rates & data

 

Watch the full video & unedited transcript and read the tapescript below

[Edited] tapescript below

Welcome back. I’m here today with Carlo Oleiniczak, Regional Director for France, Spain and Portugal at bookings.com to explore how hotels can maximize the amounts of business they get from an online travel agency.

1.Booking.com presentation

The website is available in 42 languages, including Cantonese, Mandarin Chinese, Arabic, Russian, India.

So basically, it will give you a true international exposure.

We have offices in 135 countries to help our partners, the hotels to make the most of our tool.

And today we feature, we display on our website more than the properties that are the more than 200 countries.

Yeah, we feel it’s fairly reasonable, and we do think we provide good value for money to our partners for number of reason.

First of all, we are less expensive than other distribution channels like the traditional FIT, distribution channels like tour operator etcetera which are higher.

Also the fact is it’s up to you to decide whether you want to be distributed or not.

The other reason is that basically we do not require any investments up front.

There is no cost.

So, which means that there is no risk and you only pay commission if you get the booking.

And also, you will get through us clients, international clients, that you will not, that would be very expensive for you to develop directly, and that also very incremental toward your basic canned space.

Basically we need to know what type of property is this hotel about.

2.Your property’s description on booking.com

2.1 What to include

  • How many rooms do you have, how many room types ith a description of each room type.
  • Clear explanation on the difference between the room type and the reason for up sell.
  • Description of your services
  • Key unique selling points, very important. (What makes you different from your competitors?)
  • Good pictures, high resolution pictures showing all your facilities.

I would say pictures, pictures, pictures.

So, I mean high, good quality pictures is very important, is key to actually improve your distribution.

I would say show off as many pictures as possible showing your properties, the different group type [of rooms?]

So you need to provide a large quantity of pictures showing all aspects of your property in high resolution, to make sure that this would be supported across all devices, so that’s very important.

2.2 Original text for each type of room to help ranking

Fresh [original?] text content is also a key.

Make sure you do not copy-paste the same text on all different web pages. It’s very important that your content is unique. [Each room category should have a text as different as possible from the other category].

This will help improve your visibility, and also, basically the search engine optimization of your pages.

That’s very important.

2.3 Guest reviews

The third element is make sure that you have Guest Reviews.

As many guest reviews as possible and as positive as possible.

3.Counter-productive practices

3.1 The First thing is what can be the most counter-productive is availability.

Very often properties are not open for sale, so they are open until the end of the year or they are open until the end of the season.

The fact is bookers and customers now look a lot in advance, like sometimes 12 months in advance.

So, a good practice would be to open up or to update your availability on a 12 months writing pattern.

3.2 Pricing your property on booking.com

The second element is pricing.

You need to make sure you pricing is competitive.

If you are overpriced [and] short on content, you will never get a piece of business.

3.3 Have original content

Poor content [is very counterproductive], poor text, don’t go for flowery text.

You need to be very objective, very factual, put high resolution pictures.

This will help us improve your online visibility and of the fourth element is guest reviews.

3.4. Dealing with negative reviews

If you have negative guest reviews, first you need to respond to them.

But this also will impact your visibility, your demand, and your conversion.

4.1 Dealing with negative reviews

Q: How can a hotel influence user reviews?

So first of all, we have today about 50 million guest reviews on the website.

Normally, we keep them for a period of 14 months.

Hoteliers cannot change these guest reviews, which sometimes can be frustrating for them, but they can answer the negative guest reviews on the positive one but then again it’s very important that they do so.

What they can do, how they can use this feedback is first they can analyze the feedback that they are getting, identify the major pain points that they are seeing, that their consumers are experiencing and keep complaining about.

And then when you have done this work, it’s very important to implement the right action plan to basically change what is hurting the customer.

This will help you improve the quality levels and the customer satisfaction level.

4.2 Successful arrivals & departures

What is also very important is make sure that you make a first good impression with your customers.

The check-in, the welcome of the guest at the hotel is very important, as well as the check-out.

If you manage to make these two elements very successful, this will help you improve your satisfaction level and then, basically, your repeaters and your visibility online.

5.Reaching for volume in quiet times

First of all, we see that today demands does materialise at two different periods, first very early for the early bookers and then at the last minute I would even say at the very last minute.

So what is important is that you have the right pricing level at each of these periods.

And basically, so you can, first of all you can use booking.com to test your pricing levels and make sure that you are hitting the market price, that’s the first thing that you can do.

Based on this then you can decide to do some special offers, either on your public rates or you can also do private at first because you don’t want disclose your special use to all the market.

You can do private the first to basically our members, the members that are registered on our website.

That’s the first thing that you can do.

On top of that, what we can do basically [we have core managers?] all over the place, multidestination, they’re here to help you.

And based on your product, based on the specificities of your destination and what customer’s expect from the type of property that you’re having, then, we will help you identify what is the best offer.

It’s not the same offer in every property, we need to adjust it to what you, as hotelier, you want to achieve and what the demand is looking for. So, it can be free breakfast, for instance in Paris, it can be BB offer.

For instance, in Paris, during the summer it’s very important to have BB offers because you have many families coming and this is the type of product they would be looking for.

You can do, if you want to push your end sub stay, you can do special offers with a discount for the second or the third night.

You can do a credit first.

Basically it’s all types of offers, of option that we can do depending really on the needs of the hotel.

6. Genius loyalty program

Another opportunity is also you can become member of Genius, which is our loyalty program.

This will give you extra marketing exposure because we do a lot of marketing push to our Genius members.

All the business bookings are also part of this program.

So it will also give you exposure to the business travel segments.

And basically Genius, we give you is ton of exposure all over the year and this will also help you better and in a more efficient way during your need period.

Basically, you need to have a rating score that is above 7.5% and you need to show performance that is above your competitors in your destination.

And then you need to give a 10% discounts on your most sold room, or the cheapest room, if the cheapest room is not the most sold room.

Okay.

Q: So that 10% basically is paying for the additional exposure, which you will get throughout booking.com Genius network.

Definitely and this is the value that you give to our most loyal customers.

7. Information provided to owners by booking.com

Basically on the extranet that we provide them they also have access to the full, a lot of information about their performance with historical data.

Basically we can get a monthly review of their performance, a yearly review of their performance, enabling them to make months of the months or year of the year comparisons.

So basically they will see the volume of demand, the profit they’re generating on bookings, the number of bookings they are making, the consolation rate that they are also generating, they will see that conversion, the average room rate they are selling on booking, the length of stay, the lead time, the revenue.

They will see all about their performance.

They will also be able to track in the tool to their competitive set so they can define what is their competitive set, at least ten competitors, and follow how basically they are performing versus their competitors.

But what also they can look into this is there are company’s set on booking.com which is different from the match from your natural company set.

So you will see which are the hotels that basically you lose booking to when the customer is looking for your property on booking.

8 Boutique hotels vs Hotel chains Inventory rates & data

So, first of all, it’s very simple.

So for any hotels, when we provide them the extranet, they can load on the extranet all the information that we need to be able to sell them online to distribute them, including they can upload their rates and their availability.

That’s very simple.

For larger hotels or sometimes for most hotel groups if they use a general manager they can also push their rates and availability on that general manager which will then be pushed on our platform.

And the big advantage of this one, it’s basically it’s less workload at the hotel level, it’s sold, it’s less manual work and you have less, you can make less mistakes, so it’s much more easy and user friendly for the hotels.

And the third possibility, for let’s say major global hotel chance, is to work on a direct connect between their reservation system and on our platform.

And then again it’s even better connectivity, with a faster response and faster upload of their availability.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>