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Perspectives by i-Comm Connect

The Hospitality Industry is Going Digital: How Can You Keep Up?

Posted by Meredith Schmidt-Fellner on September 12, 2019 at 10:33 AM
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The hospitality industry has undergone some major shifts in the past decade with the emergence of new technologies that are shaping the way your customers book, experience, and review a trip or meal. Here we will discuss three notable technology trends in the industry – OTAs, apps, and multi-device users – that present specific challenges to the hospitality community and how TACTAL can reduce these pain points to create satisfied and returning customers for years to come.

OTAs

Trend: Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) such as Expedia, Priceline, and Orbitz are extremely popular due to the ability for customers to see their aggregated options for travel based on price point and rating. According to a 2017 report by Phocusright, OTAs have 39% of the U.S. digital booking market and are set to reach 41% by 2020. Millennials in particular are partial to OTAs due to the ease of use and instant gratification of the quick search. In fact, 52% of millennials prefer to book their hotels via an OTA than directly with the hotel itself. OTAs will continue to take more market share away from the suppliers and with a growing commission rate, you must do what you can to increase direct bookings for more revenue opportunities.

Solution: To increase direct bookings it is essential for your website to have simple, instant communication channels on every page. TACTAL allows you to have a click-to-call button floating wherever you want on your site so that a reservationist is always one click away. Providing a super easy point of contact reduces website abandonment if your customer runs into a question or issue and increases the chance they will book direct. As an added bonus, when a guest calls your team directly there is an opportunity to create a human connection ahead of their visit, as well as upsell possibilities. Direct bookings and open communication channels made possible by TACTAL ensure a positive first interaction with your business and more revenue opportunity.

Hospitality Apps

Trend: Apps are highly important to compete in the increasingly mobile world and can be used to control and enhance the guest experience. Customers from anywhere in the world can access apps using Wi-Fi, but that does not guarantee that they can place a call from within the app. If a guest is international or traveling, they may not have a cellphone data connection or be in a spot when a 1-800 number is available to reach your agents.

Solution: To ensure that guests are able to stay connected to all the touchpoints within your application, TACTAL SDKs are available to integrate secure, internet-based calling directly within the app. The user remains on the platform as they place a call for an uninterrupted app experience, which allows identifying data to be a passed to the representative for more personalized, efficient service. Additionally, calls can be placed from anywhere in the world with an internet connection and reduces telco fees associated with long distance or toll-free numbers by placing an internet-based call.

Multi-Device User Journey

Trend: Guests are increasingly using multiple devices in order to complete the booking journey, which is important for hospitality companies to be aware of for a successful omni-channel experience. A 2018 McKinsey report shows that cross-device travel-shopping journeys have risen 10% from 2017 to 2018 and provide an example of a typical accommodation-purchase journey.

Omnichannel User Journey TACTAL

The example shows that shoppers often go from desktop to mobile consistently throughout a purchase journey. As this relates to the hospitality industry, it is important to embrace the omni-channel shoppers by providing a consistent and seamless experience on all browsers and devices.

Solution: TACTAL gives your customers the same, reliable calling experience on any device or browser. The call button is consistent and seamless on desktop, tablet, or mobile, so that if the customer runs into any questions or issues in the buying journey they can reach out immediately. Access to instant, live help reduces website abandonment and increases direct booking opportunity. TACTAL provides a premier omni-channel solution with no development work or additional infrastructure needed, so that customers can engage with a company exactly when and how they want to.

New technology doesn’t have to cut away at your bottom line. Adding TACTAL’s cutting-edge click-to-call technology to your website helps you stay ahead of the competition and increase direct bookings for your hospitality business. Try our solutions finder to figure out which plan is right for you and start generating more revenue today!  

Topics: Click to Call, Customer Service, TACTAL, Travel Industry

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