Here, Mike Hardman from hospitality equipment suppliers Alliance Online shares his advice for hoteliers looking to improve their customers’ experience — and, therefore, increase revenue.
Your revenue per available room (RevPAR) is a good way to measure the average rate you sell your rooms at, allowing you to keep track of your success and compare your hotel with competitors. If you haven’t already, you can determine your RevPAR by multiplying your average daily rate by your occupancy rate. Your occupancy rate is the number of occupied rooms you have divided by your total number of available rooms, multiplied by 100.
If your RevPAR isn’t as high as you’d like, you can raise it by focussing on customer experience. Improving your facilities won’t just allow you to charge guests more for their stay — your customers will also be more inclined to share their positive opinion of your hotel online and bring you more custom.
Below are just some of the ways you can improve customer facilities and increase your average room rate in return.
Offer something extra for your guests
During the booking process, tempt potential guests with packages and promotions. Give them the option of add-ons such as breakfast, shuttle services, or extra treats for their room to bump up their average spend.
When setting up rooms, it’s a good idea to provide your guests with low cost but high-quality items that have the potential to feel like little gifts. A bowl of fresh fruit, a vase of flowers, boxes of chocolates and, of course, toiletries can all be stocked in the room to make your guests’ stay more luxurious.
Improve your housekeeping and room services
High cleanliness standards are perhaps the most crucial way to show your quality and maintain positive reviews from guests. Don’t be frugal with deep cleaning tools, products, and practices, or you could end up paying the price. You can also offer extra services for guests, such as laundry and dry cleaning, ironing and pressing, and even shoe polishing to increase value.
Make sure you’re advertising the fact you offer room service; if you find that guests aren’t always taking advantage of it, it might not be as obvious as you think. Present their chosen refreshments with style by finding modern, instagrammable crockery, and ask staff to remove the lids from serving dishes in front of guests in their room. Staff can also bring a bucket of ice and pour drinks out of the bottle for an extra flourish. This level of service feels fancy, but it also gives staff the opportunity to ask guests whether to leave the bottle and add it to the bill.
Effective planning and smooth communication between staff and guests allow problems to be solved before they become disasters. Keep on top of maintenance to prevent any issues arising during your customers’ stay, such as faulty air cons or cosmetic damage. Be prepared to manage your guests’ needs as quickly as possible by having plenty of extra pillows, towels, chairs, highchairs, and cots to hand. If this is something you might struggle with, consider whether your inventory management system needs updating.
As much as you can, go for the personal approach. Instead of working the whole building, give staff sections to take care of so they can better keep track of their guests’ names and preferences. If possible, it’s also good to invest in staff that can communicate in many different languages to cater for foreign guests.
Staff should be fully-trained and aware of the contents of all service dossiers and menus. That way, they can be a complete source of information and don’t have to leave guests waiting as they try and find someone who knows the answers to their questions. These little organisational details improve the overall guest experience, making them more likely to spend money in the future or convince others to do the same.
With these tips, you can begin to improve your customer facilities and consequently raise your average room rates.