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How to get the most value out of your booking engine
How to get the most value out of your booking engine
Updated over a week ago

SiteMinder’s booking engine can be a powerful tool that can help increase your share of direct bookings and can be customised to fit your marketing and pricing strategies. Here are some tips to help you get the most value out of your booking engine and help attract more direct bookings and reduce your OTA commission fees.

Integrate the booking engine with your website for a seamless guest booking experience

By integrating the booking engine with your website, you can maintain your property’s branding and provide a consistent experience throughout a guest’s booking journey. This enhances the trust your potential guests have in your property, and increases the chances they will make a direct booking.

Plus, our booking engine is optimised for mobile, as many travellers are searching and booking reservations on a mobile device, especially for last- minute bookings.

Update your images to highlight your property

A picture is worth a thousand words. Make sure you upload high quality images that showcase your unique property in the light that it deserves. Grab your potential guests’ attention and give them a clear picture of what they can expect to help them feel confident to book your property.

Make sure you assign images to each room type to highlight a room’s unique features. We recommend assigning at least 3 images to each room type (don’t forget one of the bathroom!).

Update your content

Make sure your content is up to date to provide a true representation of your property’s amenities, services and features.

Room type content — add a name and description of the room type, as well as the room’s amenities and facilities.
Property content — make sure you have added all your property facilities, parking and transportation information, as well as your policies such as your check-in and check-out times and your terms, conditions and privacy policy.

Use promo codes

Promotion codes — also known as promo codes — are a great way to promote your property and its offerings, and can help increase your direct bookings by attracting both new and loyal customers.

Offer discounts to guests who book direct. Distribute your promo codes in your post-stay e-mails, via your social media channels, through online advertisements, and so on.

Set up early-bird rates

Offering discounted early-bird rates with a flexible cancellation policy can help encourage guests to book in advance to secure the discounted rate. If you require a deposit, this can help improve your short-term cash flow.

Introduce last-minute rates

Setting attractive last-minute rates are good for filling any remaining rooms. Offset the rate by taking a non-refundable deposit to limit the amount of cancelled bookings. Advertise your last-minute rates and create a sense of urgency. Example: ‘Only two rooms left!’.

Entice guests with a stay pay deal

Maintain your occupancy by increasing the length of your guests stay. Offer them a discount for one or more of their dates, clearly indicating the price difference and encourage them to book additional nights. You have control over what night will to be discounted; first, last, cheapest etc.

Interest guests in package deals

Packaging up extras like entry to nearby events, attractions, or restaurants gives guests an easy one-stop shopping experience. Offer options guests can’t find on OTAs such as late check-out or early check-in, and again entice them to stay longer.

Advertise your direct booking rates

Even if you also offer discounted rates on your connected channels, you can still encourage guests to book direct by promoting your direct rates through your social media channels etc. Draw attention to your direct rates and include a sense of urgency to make your guests think they should book now or they may miss out.

Connect to high performing travel sites and metasearch engines

By connecting to Demand Plus, your property will appear Google Hotel Ads, Trivago, and TripAdvisor — some of the world’s largest search engine and highest performing travel sites — and you will reach millions of travellers when they are actively searching for accommodation. Reduce your reliance on OTAs and increase your revenue by driving guests to book directly on your website.

For more tips on how to increase your direct bookings, read this guide.

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