Special Offers and Packages
What makes a Booking Engine special is its ability to make the user feel that the best place to make a reservation is on the hotel's website.
Special offers and packages are of strategic importance because with these sales tools, the hotelier can pursue precise objectives:
- Disintermediation of sales from the OTAs: in the world of mass online distribution based on standardised offers, creating an offer that stands out allows a hotel to distinguish itself as a property that offers something extra that is unavailable elsewhere.
- Customer loyalty: having access to a special and exclusive offer makes a customer feel valued; they will always prefer booking direct because only there do they have access to special benefits, be they discounts or services.
- Increasing the average length of stay: distribution on the OTAs is strongly characterised by short stays. By offering packages for longer stays, a hotel can stimulate a demand that would otherwise remain dormant.
- De-seasonalisation: selling rooms is easy when demand is at its peak. Convincing customers to buy what’s on offer during ‘off-peak’ periods is more challenging, but if done effectively, it can be highly profitable.
For the reasons above, and due to the characteristics of the hospitality market, the promotion of packages must be clear, simple, and above all, fast.
How does Vertical Booking respond to these demands?
Vertical Booking focuses on both ends of the software: the operative side, or back office, and the emotive front end.
The Back Office allows the user to create packages and offers in a quick and simple way, while integrating a detailed revenue management section.
Through the derivation function, the offers and the packages can be associated to a master rate of reference (although they can also be managed separately) and set in a few seconds.
Moreover, there are many features to help make these offers and packages more attractive:
- Insertion of discounts for services included in the package: the customer clearly sees the advantages in terms of price
- Limit display to determined search criteria (for example only adults, or only adults with children): this allows a hotelier to target only the market sector that the particular offer concerns
- Limit display to determined room types: allows you to suggest upgrades that translate into a potential increase in average revenue per room
- Management of the display of an offer: to respond quickly and precisely to market demands it is important to be able to define when a determined package can be booked (by period, arrival date, by minimum nights of stay) and to make it bookable only when the search criteria of the customer correspond.
- Display based on the device being used. Think, for example, of packages dedicated to business clientele that are only visible on smartphones: now it’s possible.
As far as the Front End is concerned, the special offers and packages created through Vertical Booking respond perfectly to the needs of the increasingly demanding market.
The web agencies that create the websites can access the specific APIs for the offers which allows the offers to be displayed in an elegant and functional way: the APIs allow offers to be shown with images and galleries, and clearly present the description of the offer and what it includes. The most outstanding characteristic is that the APIs include an intelligent calendar that shows bookable dates along with rates and the minimum length of stay applicable, all of which greatly increases conversion.
The offers can be classified by type and by availability period. For example, if you want to check for offers at a hotel valid in the month of June, the site can show the bookable offers for months at a time.
Finally, another interesting feature is the possibility to personalise emails.
Emails can be personalised both when sending quotations and offers and when confirming the reservation.