If you have 60 seconds, I have 300 words that might help at the NOI line.
According to a recent report by SalesCycle, up to 81% of people abandon their online travel bookings while they are in the process of making the reservation. Although the report indicated that many would consider returning to their abandoned booking at a later time, those that do not will quickly amount to thousands of dollars in lost revenue.
After surveying 1,000 consumers, among the main reasons given for abandoning the reservation process were the client not being ready to book, or that they were only doing pre-trip research. While reasons like these are somewhat uncontrollable, the report also revealed certain reasons for abandonment that can almost certainly be addressed.
For example, 29% of potential guests said they abandoned the booking because the process was too long or complicated, because of technical issues, or because of a lack of options available to them.
A hotel spends a significant amount of money to get a person to its site and to start the booking process, so this figure represents lost revenue as well as wasted expense. It makes financial sense to offer a simpler and bullet-proof alternative, right at the point of booking.
A well-trained, professional voice reservations team can process bookings quickly and efficiently, and promoting this option throughout the website - especially on the checkout page - will let customers know there’s an option if they encounter difficulties.
This can take the form of a prominent button with a clear call-to-action such as, “Call now to reserve your room in minutes”, or as we have seen on many different types of sites, “Having trouble? Click here to chat with one of our agents”.
Hotels should do everything in their power to make the reservation process as simple as possible. A dedicated, specialized voice reservations team can help achieve this by encouraging customers frustrated with the online booking process and ready to abandon their booking to instead call the hotel to complete their reservation.
About Travel OutlookTM
Travel Outlook takes voice reservations calls for select hotels, improving hotel voice channel revenue and guest satisfaction. The first call center certified by the Kennedy Training Network, Travel Outlook can function as a full reservations department or simply handle overflow calls.
About the Author
John Smallwood, President and Chief Executive Officer: I oversee the day-to-day activities of a growing company dedicated to helping independent hotels and hospitality businesses increase top line revenues and provide better communication with their guests. I created the Travel Outlook concept in 2006, after more than twenty years’ experience in owning hotels and hospitality management. I earned a marketing degree from New Mexico State University, and started my career with AT&T, but soon bought a short term rental/timeshare operation in Santa Fe which gradually expanded into a hotel management business with over 200 employees. I have owned, managed, or developed a dozen hotel properties.
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