Planning ahead
Updated over a week ago

Long-term price setting and adjustments

Some setups are more complex to manage than others, so it is important to set up your property for success by creating pricing configurations that are easy to manage.

Think carefully about which rate plans will work well. Also consider the master rate that other rates will derive their pricing from, as derivations can change prices according to the rules you set up.

See below for an example of how rates are derived from a master rate.

siteminder pricing

Remember: changes made to the pricing of a master rate will also change the rates derived from it.

For example, imagine you have a room type that you want to offer to guests with three rates: room only, non-refundable, and breakfast-inclusive.

The sale price of your room-only rate is a base price, making it a suitable ‘master’ rate to derive your other rates from.

Now imagine that you make the room-only rate the master rate and you set a master price of AUD 150; for your derived non-refundable rate, you set a 10% discount on the master rate; and for your derived breakfast-inclusive rate, you create a flat fee of AUD 10 to add to the master rate — because the room- only rate plan is a master rate, if you make any pricing changes to it, all of these derived rates will also be affected.

Manage seasonality

Every property has its high and low seasons, no matter the location, so creating the right rate plans ahead of time is the best way to attract guests throughout the year.

Your rate plans can also be bolstered by deals based on the following factors.

  1. Number of nights per stay — for example, weekday, midweek, or weekend deals. With these types of deals, we recommend applying minimum stay (or similar restrictions).

  2. Check-in and check-out times — such as early bird or last-minute deals. You should use a release period or maximum advance booking dates (which are only available for direct booking rates).

  3. Public holidays — Christmas, Halloween and Mother’s Day, for instance. With these, you should make the offer available only for specific dates and use stop sells for the rest of the year.

  4. Important festivals or events — music festivals, races, concerts, et cetera. Make the offer only available for specific dates by using stop sells for the rest of the year. Also compare your competitors’ prices — they might change during these events, so adjust your prices accordingly.

  5. Nearby tourist attractions — museums, parks, and so on. For deals such as these, consider partnering with neighbouring businesses to attract tourists with enticing extras.

💡Once you have created your rate plans and edited their pricing settings, follow the steps below.

  • Assign room types to rate plans — this will create room rates that can be mapped to your channels.

  • Create equivalent room rates on your channels to advertise your deals. (Your channels’ support teams can help guide you through this.)

  • Map your channel room rates; mapping lets you centralise your channels’ inventory in our platform, making it easier to manage your property.

Get more bookings during low seasons

By running the following Insights reports, you gain valuable data that can be used to help increase bookings — something that is especially important during low seasons.

  • Booking performance report — your top-performing room types, room rates, and channels.

  • Pace report— your room sales in a specific period this year compared to the same period last year.

  • Competitor rates report — your competitors’ rates.

These reports help you analyse specific periods during the year when sales either underperformed or overperformed, enabling you to make informed adjustments and identify problems affecting your revenue.

Different problems require different solutions; see below for examples of how to counter them.

  • If you are booking too many short stays — consider creating a ‘long stay deal’ with a minimum stay period to encourage longer stays.

  • If you are only getting weekend reservations — maybe create a ‘weekday deal’ and select restrictions that prevent guests booking the deal on weekends (stop sell, CTA, CTD).

  • If your prices are too high compared to your competitors — perhaps drop the prices to make them more attractive. A bulk update is a great way to do this; if you change a master rate, all of its derived rates will be changed, too.

  • If most reservations are coming from a small number of channels — think about using yield rules to trigger stop sells, or simply limit their availability.

  • If you are struggling to secure reservations during low seasons — consider the following methods.

    • Create more appealing deals — add deals with inclusions and/or extras, possibly a “Full board” deal (in other words, a deal including breakfast, lunch, and dinner) or a deal with an enticing extra — a “Spa package”, for example.

    • Utilise more channels — add channels to help diversify your offers and hit your targets.

💡 More about extras:

  • An extra is any product or service offered as an addition to a reservation at your property.

  • Extras can be all sorts of things: shuttle services to and from the airport, continental breakfasts, honeymoon specials, massages, and so on.

  • In our platform, extras are only available for your direct booking rates.

  • You might need to create extras on a channel before guests can see and pay for them while on the channel. However, you can potentially avoid confusion by opting for a rate plan name that makes guests aware of the extra — for example, “Honeymoon special” — then writing a good description and adding the extra price to the daily rate price.

Get the most out of your direct booking engine

You need to make your direct booking engine as easy to find as possible; the more visible it is, the greater the chance of bookings.

Promotional codes

Promotional or ‘promo’ codes can encourage more reservations when included as part of a good marketing strategy. Consider creating a loyalty promotion code with a discount or encourage repeat customers and loyalty by sharing a promo code in your guest’s post-departure message.

Digital marketing plug-ins

Your direct booking engine integrates with a variety of digital marketing third-party plug-in apps specifically designed for the hospitality industry. These apps help with your marketing across various platforms, enabling you to create campaigns that analyse conversion and the effectiveness of your business.

Demand Plus

Demand Plus lists your direct booking site on the popular metasearch engines Google Hotel Ads, Trivago, and Tripadvisor, increasing your potential to get direct bookings. It also only charges commissions for successful reservations, not no-shows or cancellations.

Enable social media bookings

Linking your property’s social media pages to your direct booking engine will make it even easier for guests to book:

💡 You can also use a social media reference landing page tool — for example, Linktree — to create a single landing page featuring multiple links, with one or more leading to your direct booking engine.

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