World Hotel Marketing once said “Holidaymakers aren’t always looking for the very cheapest deal they can get when it comes to hotel prices – they simply want to know upfront how much their trip will cost, feel they are getting good value for money and not perceive that they are being tricked by the brand they’re looking at.”
The quote is pretty clear. The best thing you can do for your guests is give them transparency on the value proposition you offer in exchange for their money. By being completely open, you stand a better chance of giving your guests exactly what they want and will also gain their loyalty.
Here is how you can utilize transparency to your advantage for direct bookings:
Make your pricing transparent
If you are open and upfront about your prices without any “hidden costs” guests might be more inclined to book with you, as they can then compare the prices and know exactly what you offer. Guests are more likely to book if they feel they are getting more value for money, even if those rates are higher than OTAs. However, if the rates are higher than OTAs for no practical or value-adding reason, you know what option they will go for.
Be open with your incentives
If guests are booking with you directly, you actually have the opportunity to offer upgrades, incentives and more. There are several options for incentives – bigger rooms, free vouchers for the spa or restaurants and more. Including these upgrades as part of the total value proposition might encourage guests to book with you more often.
Ask guests for their feedback
It is always prudent to request guests to publicly share their feedback for other guests to see. This works both ways, as your guests will feel that their feedback is valuable and potential guests will know that you are not afraid of being open and transparent.