Why Hotels Need an Online Business Platform Discover the value of a full-service solution

Dr. Rahul Razdan, CEO Ocoos

03/16/2015 14:37 PM
Total Views: 1935

It's no great surprise that nearly all hotels lay claim to a website. Whether it's a simple, DIY website, or a page commissioned by a larger franchise, having an online presence is an absolute must for hotels. But is a standard website enough to guarantee a hotel's success? Hardly.

In order to compete in the increasingly crowded hospitality space, a hotel must create a robust online business platform. From the largest resort to the smallest B&B, it's equally possible to understand the value of an online business platform and successfully execute it.

First, let's take a step back and look at the current state of hotels and the web. Today, a jaw-dropping number of online reservations are made through OTAs, which comes at a cost, and drives down profit margins for hotel owners. The solution many hotels rely on is using a web page managed by the property's larger franchise. While this is one solution to the problem, it causes enormous lost opportunity for marketing and sales.

An online business platform, on the other hand, is a robust, full-service solution that increases customer engagement and drives business. First, you know that the first thing a potential guest sees when accessing your hotel's website is the homepage. An online business platform gives you the freedom to create a stunning splash page, featuring high-quality images that show off your property and SEO-friendly text that explains your hotel's unique amenities. The platform is not only optimized for SEO, but also across mobile devices (which an increasing number of consumers use for hotel bookings), and browsers -- driving traffic to your website.

Speaking of devices, the platform offers an easy-to-use reservation tool that is available across all devices: laptops, tablets, and mobile devices. The reservation tool also includes click-to-call functionality, as well as click for directions.

Does your hotel have conference and meeting room, or ballroom facilities? An online business platform allows you properly promote your property to attract local business opportunities. Similarly, you'll have the freedom to position your hotel as a destination by promoting nearby attractions and events, like concert venues or amusement parks.

Savvy property managers devise creative packages to attract guests, and the online business platform allows your hotel to promote special deals or packages, like extended stay rates for business travelers, group rates, and even a girlfriend getaway or holiday package.

In today's social media-crazed environment, it's also necessary to have a presence across these outlets, and your online business platform should include social media management tools, as well as blog and newsletter functionalities, which can help you build and strengthen your relationships with current and future guests.

The value of smart customer engagement cannot be overstated. An online business platform offers powerful CRM tools, including a database that captures valuable guest information. Managers can take this information and design loyalty programs and low-cost marketing plans. Finally, the platform includes some of the industry's best analytics and reporting tools, so managers have keen insights into the successes or flaws in their various plans, including advertising. 

If you're a hotel operator, and you'd like to boost profit margins and see excellent ROI, you can turn to a platform tool that specializes in the hotel space, such as Hospitality Solutions from Ocoos. The platform includes all the aforementioned tools and functionality, and even features a full-service concierge who will work with you to build a site that covers all the needs of your property. Once it's built, you'll have full access to the platform, allowing you to update and maintain the site, and also have access to 24-hour, US-based support.

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