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Hotel Aggregators: From Boon to Bane

 

Hotel AggregatorsTake this scenario: You are the owner of a vacant high rise or perhaps a fancy bungalow & in steps some prominent hotel aggregator, all set to lure you into the idea of converting your space into a hotel. And what’s most lucrative is the ‘minimum guarantee’ of a monthly income irrespective of bookings received. How does it feel to be promised an X amount monthly? You are relieved & happy that you can now live comfortably. Fast forward, scene II: A year later your aggregator complains that the hotel isn’t maintained or for a certain number of months your hotel hasn’t got enough bookings, etc. You know that these are unfair statements and yet you have no choice but to comply with the decisions of the hotel aggregators. And eventually, the aggregator chooses to reduce your ‘minimum guarantee’ amount or perhaps lower your ARR since they have control of your inventory. While this was the scene just a few months ago before the onslaught of COVID-19, today the situation is worse than you could have imagined.

Enter 2020: Hotel aggregators have taken a hit and a bad one at that. With the hospitality industry at a standstill & tourism being affected, hotel aggregators are one amongst the worst hit. Many are resolutely refusing to pay small hotels the ‘minimum guarantee’ amounts promised. And as hoteliers, you are faced with a double whammy: no revenue from the aggregator + no bookings because of the prevailing scenario. The question that begs to be answered is what do you do next? How do you, as a hotelier, find your way out of this crisis?

Take back control of your inventory

For long now and under the guise of steep revenue inflow, you have given up control to hotel aggregators. But it’s time you regained control. And the onslaught of this pandemic has given every hotelier the opportunity to set their business right and to bring it back on track again. Of course, it’s not without effort but it will bring you enormous gains in the long run. Among the many advantages – you regain control of your inventory, you are incharge of setting the pricing & most importantly, you get direct connect with your guests to build lasting relations. Doesn’t that put control back in your hands? Yes, you have to use this slow-down to re-strategize, re-plan and eventually re-open when the right time surfaces.

How do you get back to gaining control of your property?

With bookings at an alltime low and hotel aggregators opting to go on the backfoot, small and mid-sized hoteliers are stuck. But then what is the next step ahead? Where do you see yourself once this pandemic is over? When you ask these questions, the only answer perhaps is to come up with a concrete solution that will prepare you for the next few years. And this means a deep dive into your property, your strategy and your revenues. And here’s how DJUBO can help you set sail, once again.

Why DJUBO?

At DJUBO, we offer you an integrated property management platform that is cloud-based and helps you manage your day-to-day operations from any remote location. Our products combined, help you provide your guests with a seamless service experience, assists in managing your property’s online reputation efficiently and more importantly – aids you in maximizing your revenues. 

Direct bookings are key to more revenues

While OTA’s remain a great source of revenue, it would be prudent to have a percentage of bookings that come directly from your website. DJUBO’s Direct Book not only helps you get direct bookings, but it also shows your guests a rate comparison widget – which means that guests can directly compare your hotel rates to the rates visible on OTA websites. And even better – you can have added offers for your guests which they can take advantage of if they book directly with you. Another advantage is that you retain the guest data which will enable you to keep in touch with your guests via emails or calls even after they have checked-out. This proves to be an efficient way of gaining more bookings – directly and with prior payment/confirmation from your guest.

Get going, get onto metasearch 

The competition will be tough out there once business is back to normal. And by normal we mean what is likely to be a surge in travel. And you DO NOT want to miss out on business that’s just a few months away. Wouldn’t it be advisable to be prepared in advance? DJUBO Fireball let’s you do just that by ensuring visibility on google hotels with a link directly to your website. Your hotel rates will be clearly visible alongside the OTA’s for your guest to choose the best suitable rate.

Let your offline agents & corporates reach out – directly

Yes, these are also other booking sources to earn revenue. With DJUBO Agentconnekt, you can give every offline travel agent separate contracted rates and a separate login for them to make bookings for their clients. This way you get business from both online and offline travel agents. The agent has the flexibility of completing the entire booking process from inquiry to payment from their individual login. Moreover, corporates require bulk bookings too & if your hotel capacity permits, then even corporates could book directly through a separate login and with separate rates.

It’s time to maximize your revenue

How would you like a peek into the future to plan your hotel’s pricing? Wouldn’t that be exciting if you could track your competition pricing and plan your rates accordingly? That’s where DJUBO Foresight comes into the picture as your competitive price intelligence tool which can give you a revenue growth of about 10% to 30% on an average. But it’s not just about rate shopping – DJUBO Foresight also let’s you track your competitors’ amenities by showing you which are being promoted and which aren’t being shown online. This will help you plan your promotion accordingly and will give you an overview of how and where you rank in direct comparison to your competitor. This and much more is available with DJUBO Foresight. For a demo, click here.

Dynamic pricing for your hotel

Airlines and many five star properties across the globe follow the rule of dynamic pricing. This involves changing your rate in accordance to peak seasons and low seasons because your hotel has finite inventory. DJUBO Cerebrum let’s you define your own revenue based on your occupancy levels. Cerebrum also lets you identify trends in the form of peak and low seasons & let’s you take action on specific days by tracking the pace. What’s more is that you can also track projected revenues for future dates and compare to past pick up trends. To know more about DJUBO Cerebrum, click here

Social distancing is here to stay

Yes. That’s going to remain the new order & that’s how travellers will behave even while traveling. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to convert to AI everywhere, but you can certainly begin by digitizing your check-in process. DJUBO Xpress self check-in kiosk will help your guests check-in at ease and without human interaction. They can generate their own key card and make their payment online too – all while maintaining sufficient social distance from your staff. 

Conclusion

If you have decided to part ways with your hotel aggregators, as a hotelier you need a concrete plan to move a head and to prepare for the next holiday season. Booking the DJUBO PMS system at this point gives you multipronged benefits – you buy the subscription and start using it but pay only after the lockdown is over. Secondly, you can begin the process of streamlining your hotel operations and planning ahead. You can manage your operations efficiently; right from online bookings to offline bookings, along with competitors’ rate intelligence, through a simple mobile-based application. This way you can make significant changes to your hotel operations without any added cost during this crisis period. 

Yes. Business will return. The situation will normalize and that’s where DJUBO steps in; to hold your hand and to ease you into the new phase of operating independently.

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