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If you are in the hospitality industry, you know full well that online reviews can make or break your business. Gone are the days when Filipinos chose just any hotel available and stayed quiet when the service they received was far from satisfactory.
In this age of the internet, Filipinos primarily rely on hotel reviews before deciding to book. What your guests say about your hotel greatly influences the decision of other travelers or staycationers who are looking for pleasant accommodations. In fact, people are willing to pay more for hotels with positive reviews.
Given the importance of good feedback, hotel owners or managers like you should go beyond marketing and advertising. It is crucial not just to listen to clients’ criticisms and reactions, but also to make an effort to provide a better overall guest experience. Make sure that your guests have only good things to say from now on by learning about the following issues encountered by hotel guests and what you can do to rectify them:
Perhaps you take pride in your attractive hotel website as you may have uploaded enticing photographs of the different rooms, recreational areas, infinity pool, and other facilities in your hotel that you think will encourage guests to book. However, you should also ask yourself: is the website functional? Can clients make reservations and pay online? If people have to book through travel agents or third-party sites to reserve rooms in your place, you are probably losing potential clients. Take note that guests, for the most part, are after convenience and a seamless customer experience.
Those who visit your website may like what they see, but if they have to make inquiries and reservations using other means, they will probably lose interest and find other hotels online. Make sure that your clients will have a seamless booking experience by giving your outdated website a technology overhaul.
Integrate a central reservation system and payment gateway on your business website to make booking and payments easier for your guests. You can begin by installing a PayMaya Checkout Plug in, so you can directly accept online payments using credit cards, debit cards, e-wallets, and other established or emerging payment solutions.
Besides allowing your site to accept multiple cashless payment options, PayMaya’s plug-in has a delayed capture feature that lets you hold an amount from a guest’s account during booking and then complete the charge upon check in or check out. When you have such technologies supporting your online portal, it will be much easier to transform online visitors into actual hotel guests.
Giving customers control is one of the most effective ways to ensure customer satisfaction. Hotels can do this by providing choices, especially when it comes to payment options. Unfortunately, many hospitality establishments lack the sensitivity to discern what clients want and need in this regard.
Some lodging places only accept credit cards even if it is evident that many Filipinos do not have a credit card or are uncomfortable having one. If your hotel is also guilty of providing limited payment options, it is high time to make changes.
It’s in your best interest to use a digital payment tool like the PayMaya ONE device, which can accommodate a wide variety of payment methods. From credit cards and debit cards to virtual prepaid cards and e-wallets, your customers will have the freedom to decide on the mode of payment they will be using.
You also have the option to accept payments via PayMaya QR. Your guests can simply scan a static QR code displayed at the hotel front desk, or they can complete the transaction by scanning a dynamic QR code generated by the PayMaya ONE device. Either way, they will be able to complete the transaction in a breeze, and best of all, it will be a 100% contactless affair—a must in a post-pandemic world.
One of the surest ways to ruin your reputation in the hospitality industry is having guests complain about unclean rooms. Customers may let other unpleasant experiences pass, but they will most likely be unforgiving of vermin crawling on the carpet, clumps of hair in the bathroom sink, dirty linens, and general uncleanliness.
You can be sure that some of your hotel guests will not only write about them, but they will also upload videos and photos of your establishment to warn others. Prevent this nightmare from happening by making cleanliness and hygiene a top priority in your hotel.
Train your staff intently and make random inspections to ensure that the cleaning team observes proper standards all the time. And in the event that you overlook a room or two, and your guests notice, make sure to transfer them to a spotless room immediately. Better yet, upgrade their accommodations as a form of consolation. This will help prevent them from having a long-lasting horrible impression of your establishment.
You do not have to run high-end hotels to know that there is no room for rude people in the hospitality industry. You cannot afford to have employees who argue, make nasty remarks, and laugh at your guests if you want to build a successful business.
Try scanning hotel reviews, and you will notice that most of the comments have something to do with the demeanor and behavior of hotel personnel. This fact alone suggests that a significant part of customers’ overall hotel experience depends on your people. As such, you should only hire patient people who can control their temper and have the ability to handle challenging and tense situations.
Not keeping your promises and failing to meet customer expectations are sure ways to receive negative reviews. If you promise a perk, discount, or other benefits on your website, be sure to follow through. If you are unable to do so because of unforeseen events, apologize sincerely and find various ways to make up for your mistakes.
Ensure that the solution you come up with will leave your clients satisfied and happy. More importantly, avoid breaking your promises in the future. Otherwise, you will be known as an unreliable establishment in the industry.
Whether you like it or not, online reviews will remain a significant influence for repeat business and how Filipinos choose a hotel to stay in for work and leisure. Avoid negative hotel reviews by regularly assessing your system, technology, people, and manner of operations. Start working on the most common issues discussed above, and identify other areas of improvement so that you can provide a superior customer experience that your guests will be happy to share with others online.