By Kristen Sullivan
With travel resuming after the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, travelers are looking for newly implemented safety procedures when determining which hotels to patron. More companies are taking the approach of digitalizing certain aspects of their business to create a contact-less experience that guests will appreciate. Having an interactive, user-friendly website serves as the foundation of your online presence. However, there is more you can do relatively quickly to assure guests you have safety and positive experiences in mind.
Here are 6 ideas to start:
1. Contactless Check-in/Check-out
Providing an online check-in system alleviates the headaches associated with standing in line at the reception desk and frees up space in the lobby for other purposes. It also gives guests the ability to pay using their smartphones rather than a physical credit card. The same online process can be adopted for checkout, or simply encouraging checkout to be handled using the phone in the guest room instead of in-person.
2. Keyless Entry
Several of the larger brands have been rolling out keyless entry as a key feature of their hotel apps over the last couple of years, but life after COVID-19 will see emerging technologies become even more essential to success in hospitality. A recent study by one keyless entry provider indicated that nearly two-thirds of travelers prefer to use their smartphone as their room key. It also provides considerable cost savings to hotels after the initial investment. The same study indicated mobile key technology saves hotels an average of $1,000 per month in discarded RFID keycards.
3. Online Directory
Perhaps the simplest change to implement is switching from in-room paper directories to a digital version on your website. Anticipate your guests needs by including a link to the hotel’s contact list and local directory upon check-in. This option also allows you to easily make changes without having to reprint materials for each room.
4. Digital Menus
Guests can access menus via the website and even place digital orders with more advanced systems. Whether you have a full-blown restaurant, lobby bar, or simply offer room service, providing digital menus reduces materials and is often a more sanitary option.
5. Booking Amenities Online
Giving your guests the ability to book amenities (such as spa treatments, room service, reserving beach equipment, etc.) via your website can increase sales for these special add-ons when you promote them during virtual check-in or a welcome email.
6. Consider a Mobile App
Hotels with a particularly loyal customer base benefit greatly from this tech-forward option. Apps give users the option to book a room, make special requests, reserve amenities, keep track of expenses, and more. It’s also an advanced way for hotels to keep in contact with guests before, during, and after their stay. Additionally, mobile apps allow guests to create customer profiles that provide hoteliers with detailed information which can be used to create more personalized experiences.
Embracing these tech-forward ideas may be the only way to stay relevant in hospitality within our digital world. Not only will these enhancements improve your customer experience, they’re also likely to streamline your internal processes, reduce operating costs and even increase revenue.
For more ways to stay at the forefront of technology, improve your hotel marketing, and design a captivating website, contact Vizergy Digital Marketing and speak to our subject matter experts.