Following hundreds of conversations with hoteliers in the past months, one pain was almost a constant: shrinking revenue margins due to OTAs.
Add to that, the following facts, OTAs are controlling hotel bookings online with their, huge marketing budgets and options & variety to shoppers, and that so many hotels rely on OTAs for an important, sometimes significant, portion of bookings.
Hoteliers and OTAs end up with a dysfunctional relationship that can be best described as one matching the ‘hate and can’t live without’ type.
Unfortunately for hoteliers in this fast paced online economy, at least for the foreseen future, OTAs are here to stay and Hoteliers need to learn how to better compete, to have a winning chance in direct-bookings.
Some more interesting facts:
76% of online bookings happen on OTA websites [according to a wihp research], however, the good news is 52% of shoppers will visit your hotel’s website after seeing you on an OTA [according to a Google research], you know, to get a better look at your location and facilities. Another industry fact, you guessed right, 85% of travelers surveyed said that PRICE is the most important factor when determining where to book. [according to a Google research]
Questions is: Why shoppers prefer booking with OTAs over hotels websites?
• Shoppers believe that OTAs automatically have lower prices when it comes to hotel rooms as opposed to actual hotel websites.
• Being the sophisticated, optimized and specialized multibillion [and million] online businesses they are, OTAs have created a shopping experience that leverages a smooth, responsive and multilingual user experience that is second to none.
So after bringing up boring facts that are, at least to some extent, known to most hoteliers, I would like to share with you a solution we have been working on,
BookingDirection’s technology works on your Hotel’s website to increase direct bookings by providing online shoppers the OTA web experience and price transparency they have grown to like — e.g. showing them “all” the prices in the marketplace, and proving that the hotel has the lowest price. In so doing, the need to comparison shop is eliminated.
Bottom line, EARN MORE by, increasing the percentage of website shoppers booking directly with you and reduce commission payout to OTA’s.
We’re in closed beta, helping hoteliers to get more direct bookings. Join the waiting list and we’ll contact you once additional hoteliers are added.
Image by: Dennis Skley