Christine Updegraff

What’s politics got to do with your hotel’s revenues?

No, I don't want a room in this hotel. The owner and I disagree politically. by Author Traditionally, hoteliers have always considered location, quality of guest experience and price points to be the key factors for driving demand. But now, it appears that guests are making a political statement through their choice of hotels. Sadly, not everything contributing to this choice would fall under the control of the hotel, which means prevention of such adversity is often impossible. Click here for an overview of hospitality business solutions from IBS A recent, extreme example comes from New York,...
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Sherilyn Rogers

8 things hotel customers will use smartphones for in 2018

"We need to have a good mobility strategy" ​ If you haven't heard this from your marketing or technology departments (or a consultant) already in the past few years, you will certainly hear it in 2018. Anything afterwards may be way too late, based on what we can see in the hospitality industry today. But then again, what does a "good" mobility strategy really mean? Think With Google – the research wing of the search giant – reports that 40% of all travel website visits in the United States happen through mobile. The smartphone in the hands of your customer is therefore your best friend a...
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Christine Updegraff

Size does matter: Brand consolidation in hospitality wholesale breeds optimism

" It's complicated " - a hotel may say when asked about its relationship with OTAs and bed banks. Nearly half of all hotel inventory sales online happen through OTAs and wholesalers, and that share is growing, although direct bookings continue to be attractive for hotel brands in search of greater margins. In his recent interview with CNBC , Mark Okerstrom, the CEO of Expedia , highlighted that diversity and size of inventory is a key part of his strategy for the future. " We've built an incredible platform for customers to come and look at all of the properties. We've got 1050 properties in N...
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Aravind Ramachandran

Customer search behavior: How breadth can benefit hotels

Looking for a phone number in the old days usually meant grappling with a massive telephone directory, which was usually the biggest book in the house. At the very least, you needed to know the name of the person. Commonly used numbers were jotted down in a private telephone book, which represented more information that helped you narrow down the search. Even if you didn't know the whole name, remembering what letter of the alphabet it started with would be greatly helpful. In other words, already possessing some information about what you are looking for in an indexed database will improve th...
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Aravind Ramachandran

Hotel rooms to order: Modular units for customized service

​ What does a traveler need in his/her hotel room? That's a hopelessly vague question! The answer depends on the objective of the trip – personal, business or social – as well as how much of the trip is to be spent in the hotel room, and several other factors. And when a hospitality services provider doesn't know what a customer needs, what can be done to ensure customer satisfaction? How can inventory be managed effectively? Typically, we try to figure it out from historic behavior. That brings us to predictive data analytics, which happens to be a pet favorite approach of mine to many real w...
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