Written by: Mar Reguant
Flexibility. This is the word that best defines the hotel sector and its workers. Each season is a new adventure. The user needs to be constantly changing and since technology is moving ahead by leaps and bounds, sometimes it is difficult to keep up.
At this time it’s common catching up with the trends we’ll see in 2017 in this or that field. Web trends, trends in design, social networks... And today, trends in technology for hotels management.
We have chosen the technological innovations that will appear in 2017 but also some changes that have already come to exist in 2016, but that will be this year when they will explode on a global level.
Manage your hotel efficiently. Energy savings will benefit you, your CSR and your customers as well. A clear example of a satisfied customer thanks to energy management is Hilton Worldwide and its “green customers”.
With the creation of LightStay technology, Hilton Worldwide was able to reduce its energy expenditure while improving its customer service. Both the building manager and guests could control the lights, water consumption and room temperature through their mobile device.
Clients were rewarded to being “green clients”, depending on how well they use the eco-efficiency application. In this way, Hilton Worldwide was able to set goals on their spending in all its hotels, collect data and analyze its investment.
Do not forget that we are increasingly concerned about the environment and that an eco-efficient hotel will be a plus and a point of differentiation for your business.
Loyalty programs by points have become so common that they no longer attract attention and do not represent a real advantage for the guest experience. That your regular customers only get points for being faithful to your brand is not enough.
Loyalty programs have limitations that are no longer allowed in 2017. If you want your client to feel unique, you will have to provide individual experiences previously worked on the data that he has provided.
Your goal in 2017 is to turn your regular customers into loyal prescribers. And this happens by working with new software technologies. You must find a CRM that allows you to filter, segment and work to the maximum with your database. And, of course, a CRM that offers you reports and analysis in real time.
If you want to approach your customers in an authentic way, learn from the example of Kimpton Hotels. Among other things, Kimpton hotels give their clients during their stay (and if they wish), a fish, so that their children have company. It is an original way to break with the standardized proposals for points and get loyal customers. Those kids are going to ask their parents to stay at a Kimpton hotel on their next trip, all to get a fish back in the room.
How to get the reception staff to connect with guests while offering the possibility to skip reception to check-in? With technology. Mobile devices are available to any guest and they are the perfect platform to connect customers and staff in a different way.
Through mobile applications, guests can meet the staff even before arriving at the destination. Digital relations are already considered as such and accepted by a large audience. In this way, the guest can feel welcomed by the hotel staff, he knows that in just one click he could get help and information, but he can also go completely unnoticed if he wishes.
Izelai is an example of a hotel without reception. A comfortable, fast and no queuing system for check-in that improves the experience of a target that seeks simplicity and practicality. The Izelai hotel reception is comparable to an ATM.
After analyzing data on travelers, the High Value City Travel Report 2017 suggests differentiating the terms experience and activity from this year. Tourists are increasingly demanding a personalization of their trips and this is what they will most value when choosing their accommodation.
Offering memorable experiences to guests will be a strong point for hotels and destinations, according to IE researcher Jörn Gieschen. Gieschen advises turning everyday activities into experiences of great value for travelers. How? Again the answer is technology.
In fact, according to the same report, new technologies are one of the determining factors in the growth of urban tourism, which already accounts for 22% of leisure travel. Travelers increasingly choose city tourism because they understand that they will have more leisure options and, therefore, experience.
Mobile technologies and apps facilitate both booking travel and information. Them both before and during the stay. Remember that travelers want to save more and more time and this can also be achieved through these mobile applications.
With a powerful CRM you can know the interests of your guests and with mobile applications you can offer exclusive activities and digitized information even before they reach the destination. Offer them, for example, a guide with the restaurants the locals prefer, so that they feel one more in the destination.