How Can Hotels Use Rate Shopping Tools to Boost Direct Bookings?

22nd Apr 2022

NB: This is an article written By:  Harsh Gupta – freemiumLabs 

Let’s set the scene: You’re lounging by the poolside of a swanky hotel, cocktail in hand, sun kissing your face, and then, your friend who’s booked the exact same room says, “Oh, I got this room $50 cheaper.” Ouch! How did that happen?

Welcome to the intricate world of hotel rate dynamics. A place where fluctuations are the norm and where a Hotel Rate Shopping Tool can be your best friend. Especially if you’re a hotelier aiming to boost those ever-so-coveted direct bookings.

The Direct Booking Conundrum

Alright, first off, why the fuss about direct bookings? Simply put, direct bookings allow hotels to sidestep those pesky OTA commission fees. Plus, they’re an avenue for hotels to foster stronger, direct relationships with their guests. This means upselling opportunities, personalized services, and building that golden customer loyalty. However, getting a customer to book directly requires an enticing offer. Enter the rate shopping tool!

What Is Hotel Rate Shopping Tool?

Picture this tool as a watchdog. Constantly scanning and comparing room rates from various channels, including OTAs, metasearch engines, and even competitors’ websites. It’s like having a superpower that lets you peek into your competitor’s playbook!

But, the question is, how does this tool supercharge direct bookings?

Insight Mining: Beyond Just Rates

Sure, at its core, a hotel rate shopping tool provides data. Lots of it. But the real value lies in the actionable insights you can extract:

  • Detecting Pricing Trends: Knowing when, why, and how competitors adjust their rates can give you the foresight to make strategic pricing moves.
  • Uncovering Market Position: Are you underselling your rooms? Or scaring guests away with exorbitant rates? An analytical review will tell.
  • Instant Disparity Alerts: If someone’s undercutting your prices, you’ll know pronto.

Case Study: The Success Of Marioott

Marriott, one of the giants in the hospitality industry, aced their direct booking game. A bit of Googling reveals their “It Pays to Book Direct” campaign. By utilizing rate shopping tools, they identified gaps, ensured rate parity, and offered exclusive benefits to direct bookers. The result? A spike in direct bookings and stronger brand loyalty.

Uses of Hotel API for Price Comparison Data

Now, let’s dive deeper. How do these rate shopping tools fetch all this data? The magic wand here is the hotel API for price comparison data. This API is the bridge that connects the hotel’s system to a world of rate data. It constantly pulls in fresh data, ensuring the rate shopping tool has the latest information to work with.

This API integration allows for:

  • Real-time Data Access: Rates change rapidly. The API ensures you’re always looking at the latest data.
  • Wider Data Pool: The API connects to multiple sources, ensuring a holistic view.
  • Seamless Integration: The best part? These APIs can often be integrated directly into a hotel’s Property Management System (PMS), making the process smooth.
  • Case Study: How Premier Inn Nailed API Integration

If you hop onto Google, you’ll come across Premier Inn’s story. This UK-based hotel chain integrated price comparison APIs seamlessly into their systems. This empowered them to continually assess their rate strategy against real-time market data, leading to smarter pricing decisions and a boost in direct bookings. Dive deeper into their journey. Hotels can embed Google Reviews on website to gain more traffic and users to their website, By embedding Google Reviews they can boost their business to the next level.

How Rate Intelligence Are Making Directly Booking Irresistable?

With insights in hand, how can hotels make that direct booking offer too good to refuse?

  • Rate Parity or Better: Ensure the price on your website is as good as, if not better than, OTAs and competitors.
  • Exclusive Perks: Throw in some freebies or exclusive experiences for direct bookers.
  • Loyalty Programs: Reward those who choose to book directly with points, discounts, or other incentives.

Conclusion

Tapping into the power of a Hotel Rate Shopping Tool to boost direct bookings is a no-brainer for hotels looking to thrive in today’s competitive landscape. It’s not just about matching prices. It’s about crafting an offer so enticing that guests can’t help but click that ‘book now’ button on your website. With the analytical prowess of rate shopping tools and the magic of hotel APIs for price comparison, direct bookings are only a strategic decision away. So, hoteliers, ready to make your move?