Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it has heavily impacted every industry in the world and it’s no secret that the hospitality industry is one of those that have been hit the hardest.
Because of the unexpected market shifts brought about by the pandemic, hoteliers are left wondering what to do and how to counter the impact of the pandemic.
In this guide, we will help you pivot successfully amid the COVID-19 pandemic with the smart strategies that we have collated that can help you maximize hotel revenues.
5 Hotel Recovery Strategies to Pivot Successfully in the New Normal
- Abide by the safety and health protocols
- Offer flexibility to guests
- Manage rate plans and cancellations wisely
- Make an offer that guests can’t refuse
- Utilize dynamic pricing strategy
What’s inside this blog?
- How to Maximize Hotel Revenues Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Frequently Asked Questions About Maximizing Revenues Amid the Pandemic
1. Abide by the safety and health protocols
In order for your hotel to thrive amid the pandemic, you must adapt to the new normal to win guests. At this point, guests prioritize hotels that will give them a comfortable and worry-free stay. They want hotels that implement strict measures abiding the safety and health protocols. Start by ensuring that hotel staff and guests will wear face masks and face shields; Offer contactless check-in and check-out; Implement social distancing; Place alcohols or hand sanitizers at your hotel; Regularly disinfect the public spaces, doorknobs and elevator buttons and; Maintain the cleanliness of your guests’ rooms.
However, the process doesn’t stop there. Make the guests aware that you are implementing these measures and that you are doing your best to keep guests safe. Post on social media about the safety measures you’re doing or add this information on your OTA listing. This way, guests would feel reassured and choose your hotel at the end of the day.
2. Offer flexibility to guests
Guests prefer hotels with flexibility options because they don’t want to risk losing their money especially now that times are uncertain. That is why guests choose hotels that give them flexibility like in cancellation policies. You can also give your guests more options when it comes to meal plans, booking preferences, service-oriented preferences, early check-in/late check-out, and rewards for customer loyalty and referral. Travelers don’t want to risk losing their money so they prioritize the hotels that offer flexibility.
3. Manage rate plans and cancellations wisely
While flexibility could win your potential customers, it is also important to maintain a balance between cancellation and non-refundable rate plans. Besides, you wouldn’t want all of them to cancel at the last minute.
With non-refundable rates, you put your hotel in a strong position. Travelers usually book rooms with non-refundable rate plans because it’s cheaper. Rooms with non-refundable rate plans are offered at a lower price than a standard rate where the establishment’s standard cancellation policy is applied. This kind of rate plan gives hoteliers more efficient revenue management, by reducing the impact of cancellations, that also gives you better cash flow. For a non-refundable rate, all that is needed is the guarantee that the hotel will eventually charge for the room.
As for the free cancellation option, instead of letting them cancel immediately, try to postpone or reschedule their booking at no extra cost. This way, you will not just keep the booking but it also shows the guests that you care.
4. Make an offer that guests can’t refuse
Upselling is a great way for hoteliers to boost revenue. Create attractive packages and offers that guests can’t refuse. It could be a complimentary meal, free shuttle service, free tours, and exclusive discounts when guests book more than one room. You can also offer room upgrades for a small additional charge or special discounts for long stays.
5. Utilize dynamic pricing strategy
Use dynamic pricing to match the changing market demand levels. Dynamic pricing projects the best available rates at the right time for the right season and for the right guest. In a nutshell, it refers to a frequent adjustment of hotel room prices based on the demand and supply.
Dynamic pricing uses artificial intelligence (AI) to monitor your target audience, their booking patterns, the length of their stay, their preferences, and the segments of your hotel that attract maximum guests while keeping track of your competitor’s pricing structure.
Static pricing, on the other hand, is when a hotel keeps the same room prices regardless of the demand and supply, and market trends. This strategy is considered outdated and risky as it does not allow your hotel to have a pricing strategy that adapts to the market trends, threatening the profitability of your hotel.
To ensure dynamic pricing is right, use a reliable Revenue Management Software (RMS) like ZEN eManager Express. It features AI-backed intelligent pricing, real-time automated updates, and in-depth analytics for performance review.
Save time and stop losing money. Leave the most crucial aspect of your hotel to be handled by the experts in the industry. Let ZEN help you bounce back and increase your revenue. Book your free appointment now at https://www.zen-hs.com/book-a-meeting/.
Frequently Asked Questions About Maximizing Revenues Amid the Pandemic
Q: How do I maximize my hotel revenue during COVID-19 pandemic?
A: Guests like more flexibility during pandemic, so offering an attractive free-cancellation plan is good. But you don’t want all of them to cancel at the last minute, so be careful in maintaining a balance between free-cancellation and non-refundable. Always pay attention to rule changes by the government, and show that in your OTA listings that your hotel is ready to handle the pandemic. Offer additional free things to attract guests. And use dynamic pricing to ensure that your hotels are priced at the right rates for the ever-changing demand level.
Q: What are the best pricing strategies during COVID-19 pandemic?
A: During the pandemic, it is recommended to use dynamic pricing instead of static pricing. Static pricing will not take into consideration the changing of demand level due to changes in lockdowns by government, etc. Meanwhile, dynamic pricing can help you to take those factors into consideration, resulting in your hotels having the most competitive prices among all competitors.
Q: How can I make my hotel survive the low demand during COVID-19 pandemic?
A: Offering competitive pricing is important. Being ready to reduce prices when the demand level is low is crucial as you will want to capture all the market share available to ensure that your hotel is still making money. Being late in reducing your rates will be catastrophic for your revenue as your competitors can undercut you by offering lower prices. So, automated dynamic pricing, i.e. ZEN eManager Express, will help you to do that.