How Can Metasearch Tools Make Hotel Operations More Powerful?

Much has been written over metasearch channels – fact is metasearch has become an increasingly crucial and complex channel for hotels. According to a recent study published by our partner Fornova in association with Eye For Travel, 73% of travelers regularly compare hotels, making it an important channel for hoteliers to reach their customer at every touchpoint.

For long, OTAs and top hotel brands have been investing a considerable amount of their marketing budget to be visible in metasearch channels. Independent properties, due to marketing budget constraint and technical challenges, have so far been slow to embrace it. However used efficiently, metasearch channels can be one of the most cost-effective ways independent hotels can take bake the control of bookings, currently dominated by OTAs. In this article, we look into four things hotels need to know before investing on metasearch.

Improve visibility of your property to your potential guests

Your potential guests are using it. OTAs are also using it. With Google turning into a full-fledged metasearch engine, metasearch has taken the centerstage at the traveller’s research process. According to Phocuswright’s Independent Lodging Properties and the Online Marketplace, over 63% independent properties in Europe and North America now have implemented Internet Booking Engines (IBR) and mobile enabled website. However with over two-third of the bookings (79% and 69% in the U.S. and Europe) coming from online, over-dependence on OTAs have taken a toll on their profitability. Independent hotels want to focus on direct bookings, and meta-search is one of the most cost-effective channels available to drive guests to brand websites.

Optimize the mobile experience

The travel is shifting to mobile. According to a report by Criteo, over one third people in developed economy now use mobile devices to book hotel rooms. Even as the booking landscape varies between demographics, OTAs’ dominance in mobile bookings remain constant. One reason that can be attributed to this shift is OTAs are essentially technology company. They have the resources and expertise to invest on technology. For hotels, especially the independent ones, competing OTAs with technology can be a mammoth task. This is where metasearch comes in. Metasearch channels like Google Hotel Ads are mobile optimized, and allows travelers to book directly with the hotel while staying within the app. However, that does not mean a metasearch campaign will be effective without a good booking engine. Make sure your booking engine experience on both desktop and mobile matches the expectation of travelers.

Google is the king of metasearch

Launched in 2011 as Hotel Finder, Google Hotel Ads has grown exponentially over the years in terms of click volumes and ROI. According to a recent study by our partner Roiback, Google Hotel Ads now accounts for over 65% of hotel bookings coming from metasearch channels. In one of our earlier articles, we discussed how Google has become a popular platform for hoteliers even as OTAs traditionally dominate metasearch sites. As Google makes definite moves to be a part of first touch point in the online purchasing journey for most travelers, Google Hotel Ads, with improved booking capabilities that includes price filtering and amenity details, has become a must have in hotelier’s metasearch plan.

Rate Parity matters

Rate Parity has been a much debated topic within the hotel industry, however for metasearch advertising , it is one vital things hotel can not ignore. Metasearch still remains primarily a site to compare hotel options and rates. If your published rate on the brand website is higher than your OTA rates, potential bookers would simply ignore your direct channel. The lack of rate parity also makes the consumer wary of the hotel’s approach and thereby defeating the purpose of investing in metasearch for broader distribution.

To get the best returns on your metasearch investment, it’s important to manage your campaign effectively, and if possible, avail advise of digital experts. Managed properly, if can drive more direct bookings and give you good returns – otherwise it would just be an investment gone into expenditure.

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The Week, That Was – June 2019 Week 1

In five minutes or less, keep track of the most important news of the week, curated just for you. We present to you hand – picked news on latest industry perspectives and some general updates. Read on!!

How Can Metasearch Tools Make Hotel Operations More Powerful?

Metasearch has become an increasingly crucial and complex channel for hotels. According to a recent study published by our partner Fornova in association with Eye For Travel, 73% of travelers regularly compare hotels, making it an important channel for hoteliers to reach their customer at every touchpoint.

https://www.erevmax.com/blog/index.php/2019/06/how-can-metasearch-tools-make-hotel-operations-more-powerful/

How Airbnb threatens to disrupt traditional hotel pricing strategies

Since the introduction of sharing-economy services such as Airbnb, hotels have struggled with how to compete against the alternative accommodations market. The study, called Competitive Dynamics in the Sharing Economy: An Analysis in the Context of Airbnb and Hotels took into account market conditions, seasonal patterns, hotel pricing and quality, consumer makeup and Airbnb supply, as well as Airbnb’s strategy toward business travelers, government regulations on Airbnb and changes in hosting costs, to arrive at four key findings.

https://www.phocuswire.com/airbnb-versus-hotels-pricing-strategy

What hoteliers should be asking of their PMS provider

The process of selecting a new property-management system is very involved—hoteliers should engage in plenty of due diligence and develop critical questions that should be answered ahead of time, including what their PMS provider will do to help ensure the hotel’s success during this often-stressful transition.

https://www.hotelmanagement.net/tech/what-hoteliers-should-be-asking-their-pms-provider

Why simply managing your hotel reviews is no longer enough for reputation management companies

Most online reputation management companies aren’t doing enough to provide comprehensive solutions that work together for the main goal of easing pressure for the end-user, the hotelier.

https://www.trustyou.com/blog/guest-feedback-reviews/reputation-management-companies-are-failing-hoteliers-infographic

eRevMax publishes market study on ‘The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East’

Check out key challenges that Middle East Hotels are facing with their online distribution. Download Now – The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East – https://lnkd.in/f-Xcg2q

eBook: Reach and convert more business travelers

The corporate travel market segment is uniquely shaped by forces outside of the travel industry. Corporate bookings are driven by the standard question of rates and availability, but they also are shaped by individual business’ travel procedures and expensing requirements.

Download the Report- http://blog.leonardo.com/corporate-ebook/

Winning with travel tech in the age of the independent hotel

Not all that long ago independent hotels had no control over guest data or the customer experience but thanks to travel technology this is changing. According to Anthony Scotland, the best thing about working with independent hotels is the ability to experiment and pilot new technologies. “It’s like being in the lab with the properties,” he says.

https://www.eyefortravel.com/mobile-and-technology/winning-travel-tech-age-independent-hotel

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The Week, That Was – May 2019 Week 5

In five minutes or less, keep track of the most important news of the week, curated just for you. We present to you hand – picked news on latest industry perspectives and some general updates. Read on!!

eRevMax publishes market study on ‘The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East’

Leading hotel technology expert eRevMax has today published a market report on The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East. The findings cover a wide cross-section of topics including technology adoption, distribution mix, channel production, online updates, among others.

Download the full study today – https://www.erevmax.com/travel-solutions/erevmax-erm-marketstudy.html

Booking.com on where it sees opportunity for growth

Where is there room for Booking.com – already one of the top players in online travel alongside Ctrip and Expedia – to grow? According to Vice President of Global Segments – Olivier Grémillon, there’s still a sizable market out there for the online travel agency to capture, and it’s the company’s responsibility to get there.

https://www.phocuswire.com/phocuswright-europe-2019-booking

What the world’s biggest OTAs have been up to

According to PhoCusWright, growth rates in the world of public online travel once again slowed in 2018, but remained in double-digit territory.

The accommodation business for both Expedia and Booking remains a priority, yet each OTA’s room nights grew at a more modest rate than either has been accustomed to in prior years.

https://www.phocuswright.com/Travel-Research/Research-Updates/2019/What-the-worlds-biggest-OTAs-have-been-up-to

Hotelbeds (a preferred partner of eRevMax) boosts European hotels offering by 5,000

A total of 70,000 hotels are now available on the bedbank’s system in Europe, whilst at a global level over 180,000 hotels are on the platform, Hotelbeds has announced.

https://www.travolution.com/articles/111480/hotelbeds-boosts-european-hotels-offering-by-5000

Hotel brands under attack: How to stay relevant

Google’s latest incursions on the travel sector highlight the increasing difficulties brands have in connecting directly with travelers.

https://reknown.com/2019/05/hotel-brands-under-attack-how-to-stay-relevant/

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A playground where children’s creativity can run wild

At eRevMax, we follow the saying, ‘work hard, play harder’ and we apply this motto to our CSR initiatives as well. Every school needs a playground, an essential component of a child’s school experience. With this thought in mind, and with the generous help of our colleague Mr. Josef Lapka, his lovely wife Ruth and beautiful daughters – Evelina & Aurelia, who helped raise the required funds, the eRevMax CSR team will get a playground constructed for our beneficiary – Hatgacha Primary School in West Bengal, India.

As they say – Do a little more than you’re paid to. Give a little more than you have to”this fund-raising initiative reposed our faith in people’s kindness as we witnessed donations coming from different countries for this project.

The school playground will help engage children’s imaginations and playful spirits and provide them with a place to further develop their cognitive, social, emotional and physical aptitudes.

Team eRevMax along with Josef and his family visited the Hatgacha Primary School this week for the foundation stone laying ceremony for the playground. The overwhelmed teachers and students showed their gratitude by putting up a cultural program – the students put up brilliant performances – they danced, sang and recited poems, which gave a glimpse of the Bengali culture to our esteemed guests.

A special mention for Evelina, Aurelia and Whitstable Junior School, UK – who prepared a hand-crafted book with pictures of students, what they do in school, subjects they learn, experiments they do etc. This thoughtful gesture really overwhelmed us all – it was like a mini cultural exchange program to help Hatgacha students get a wider world view. In addition, Whitstable also donated play equipments like football and jumbo badminton racquets among other things.

Overall, a successful day that was spent well in giving shape to a noble cause. And big shout out to everyone involved for their incredible support and dedication in making this happen. We will continue to spread joy and happiness through our initiatives, and we hope you will join us do the same!

eRevMax publishes market study on ‘The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East’

Leading hotel technology expert eRevMax has today published a market report on The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East. The findings cover a wide cross-section of topics including technology adoption, distribution mix, channel production, online updates, among others.

With more than 108 respondents from 5 countries, namely, UAE, Egypt, Qatar, Oman and Saudi Arabia, this is one of the most comprehensive study focused solely on online distribution trends in the region.

According to the survey respondents, close to 48% of their reservations come from Online Travel Agencies, followed by Wholesalers contributing 23%. Online direct booking is around 18%, an indication of hoteliers’ challenge in the region to keep up with the shift towards mobile booking.

“The objective of this study is to identify key trends in the hotel online distribution space in the Middle East and understand how the market is evolving with the constant changes in consumer behaviour,” said Gerard Carrie, COO, eRevMax.

The survey also reveals that the Middle East hotel industry are now increasingly investing on travel technology solutions.

Majority of the respondents now use at least three travel technology applications. In lieu with the growth in online bookings, Channel Manager or OTA connectivity solution has become a must have with 64% hotels using it to manage OTAs.

The report is a must-read for hoteliers who want to better understand the trends in the region and establish a benchmark for their approach against competitors in the industry.

Find out the key challenges that Middle East hoteliers are facing with their online distribution. Download the full study today – The State of Hotel Online Distribution in Middle East  

The Week, That Was – May 2019 Week 4

In five minutes or less, keep track of the most important news of the week, curated just for you. We present to you hand – picked news on latest industry perspectives and some general updates. Read on!!

eRevMax completes integration with Mexican CRS – PMS provider

Hotel connectivity solution provider eRevMax has completed 2-way integration with Front2Go hotel management system. Mutual hotel customers can now leverage the interface to update rate and availability to third party online booking sites whenever they are updated in the hotel reservation system and receive reservations from OTAs.

https://www.erevmax.com/ratetiger-news/ratetiger-news-archive/may2019-erevmax-completes-integration-with-mexican.html

Business travelers increasingly seek digital channels

Travel management company CWT has released research showing that travelers want to manage transactions via online channels and apps. The study reveals that 69% of business travelers prefer to book flights using online channels and 78% want to do the same when booking hotels. For ground transportation, 71% want to book using an app or web browser and 68% want to use these channels to check in for flights.

https://www.phocuswire.com/CWT-booking-trends

Winding Tree completes blockchain hotel booking

Open-source travel distribution platform Winding Tree claims to be the first to process a hotel booking on a public blockchain. The transaction was tested by Hobo Hotel Stockholm, a member of the Nordic Choice Hotels group. Winding Tree says the booking demonstrates a “real-world use case the space has not seen yet”.

https://buyingbusinesstravel.com/news/winding-tree-completes-blockchain-hotel-booking/

GDPR one year later: What’s changed and what’s still to come for hotels

GDPR has prompted many hotels to re-examine their guest privacy practices, such as how they obtain and use guest data gathered through OTAs, or the impacts of sharing data among multiple properties within one management group.

https://lodgingmagazine.com/gdpr-one-year-later-whats-changed-and-whats-still-to-come-for-hotels/

How AI Is Transforming Business Travel

It’s no secret that the travel industry has become digital-first over the last several years. In fact, research shows that 60% of leisure and about 40% of business travel transactions are now completed online.

https://techfinancials.co.za/2019/05/21/how-ai-is-transforming-business-travel/

Airbnb launches Arabic website amid 63% growth in UAE visitors

Airbnb launched its Arabic website in a bit to grow its presence across the Middle East and North-Africa region, where it has over 70,000 listings.

https://www.arabianbusiness.com/travel-hospitality/420624-airbnb-launches-arabic-website-amid-63-growth-in-uae-visitors

Amadeus signs hotel distribution agreement with Booking.com

As a result of this partnership, travel sellers will directly benefit from an increase of 30% in the accommodation options made available by Amadeus.

https://amadeus.com/en/insights/press-release/amadeus-boosts-accommodation-content-partnership-booking

A new way of thinking about your PMS: the API first approach

Legacy PMSs make it difficult and costly to connect all systems. Even some modern, cloud-based PMSs aren’t developed in a way that makes connectivity as easy and painless as it should be.

https://blog.apaleo.com/hotels/apaleo-api-first-approach

TripAdvisor to woo advertisers outside travel and hospitality

TripAdvisor’s owl eyes see a lot. Travelers have been using the site, known for its googly-eyed owl mascot, to research trips and hotels since its 2000 founding.  Now, the Needham, Massachusetts-based company is planning to use the depth of information it has learned about its consumers to attract advertisers beyond travel and hospitality marketers. To that end, TripAdvisor is staffing up its advertising revenue team.

https://adage.com/article/cmo-strategy/tripadvisor-prepares-woo-advertisers-outside-travel-and-hospitality/2172041

Connect with us for your connectivity needs to make the most of online revenue- https://goo.gl/3gKUJZ

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eRevMax completes integration with Mexican CRS – PMS provider

Hotel connectivity solution provider eRevMax has completed 2-way integration with Front2Go hotel management system. Mutual hotel customers can now leverage the interface to update rate and availability to third party online booking sites whenever they are updated in the hotel reservation system and receive reservations from OTAs.

Developed by Avance Sistemas, Front2Go is an upcoming property management system currently being used by over 200 hotels in the region. Front2Go dashboard allows property owners to manage front desk operations, rates and promotions, and customer loyalty data, consolidating the status of all hotel properties in one place. eRevMax’s distribution solutions are used by over 9000 hotels to update rate and availability across their booking channels and immediately update inventory whenever a booking is made.

Front2Go is a new generation CRS-PMS software with presence in Mexico and Latin America. Through our new partnership with eRevMax, our mutual customers will benefit from the integrated connectivity to many booking sites provided by RateTiger channel manager.  The availability and rates remain in sync with all online sales channels, while the reservations are received seamlessly into our CRS. This alliance will allow our customers to increase their online presence without the complexities of having to update data in several platforms,” said Alfredo Malo, CIO, Avance Sistemas.

Our interface with Front2Go provides our customers in the Americas another option to manage online channels cost-effectively without worrying about maintaining online inventory manually across each booking website. The secure XML connection eliminates the need for any manual intervention, allowing hotel managers to focus on key aspects like strategy and guest engagement,” said Ashis Saha, SVP – Project Management, eRevMax.

eRevMax offers seamless connectivity with around 400 OTAs and 90 technology providers. The company is developing its connectivity solutions to offer sophisticated real-time revenue management functionality to the hospitality industry. This includes solutions across the board from independent boutique properties to hotel groups and chain. eRevMax’s Channel Ecosystem facilitates quality certified connectivity and relationship management services to support complex revenue generation strategies.

Estonian luxury hotel recommends RateTiger for channel connectivity

The Three Sisters Hotel, a luxury boutique property has recommended RateTiger, powered by LiveOS, for fast and seamless connectivity for effective online distribution. The hotel has been using RTConnect, the SaaS based distribution solution by eRevMax to maintain real-time data transfer between its property management system and online sales channels for the last three years, resulting in an increase in online revenue and occupancy.

Located within the 16th century walls of Tallinn’s fabled Old Town, the Three Sisters, a member of the exclusive Relais & Chateaux, is a 5-star boutique hotel offering 23 rooms. The revenue management team is leveraging RTConnect to update rates and inventory in real-time across all major global channels and metasearch sites and receive reservations directly into its PMS. They also use the advanced analytics available on the LiveOS dashboard to go beyond traditional revenue management, and incorporate customer behavior, dynamic pricing, segmentation, distribution and marketing to optimize revenue potential.

We are very satisfied with RateTiger. The two-way connection is very important to us. We are very pleased with the personalized support and excellent response time,” said Anna Grigoruk, Hotel Manager, the Three Sisters Hotel.

As a technology partner, we are committed to developing superior connectivity with a range of online sales channels for our client hotels to make the best use of their distribution mix. RateTiger and LiveOS have been built with a vision to make online sales simpler for hotels, and this recommendation is a testimony to that,” said Alin Lazar, Regional Sales Director – EMEA, eRevMax.

RTConnect, eRevMax’s enterprise connectivity solution delivers real-time connectivity between CRS/PMS and around 400 online sales channels including GDS, OTAs, IDS, Metasearch Engines, Wholesalers, Tour Operators and other travel sales companies processing online hotel bookings. It supports full enterprise integration with 2-way XML connectivity; all delivered in a Software-as a Service (SaaS) model for the large independent and group hotels.

The Week, That Was – May 2019 Week 3

In five minutes or less, keep track of the most important news of the week, curated just for you. We present to you hand – picked news on latest industry perspectives and some general updates. Read on!!

Estonian luxury hotel recommends RateTiger for channel connectivity

The Three Sisters Hotel, a luxury boutique property has recommended RateTiger, powered by LiveOS, for fast and seamless connectivity for effective online distribution. The hotel has been using RTConnect, the SaaS based distribution solution by eRevMax to maintain real-time data transfer between its property management system and online sales channels for the last three years, resulting in an increase in online revenue and occupancy.

https://www.erevmax.com/ratetiger-news/ratetiger-news-archive/may2019-erevmax-estonian-luxury-hotel-recommends-ratetiger.html

5 Distribution dilemmas that hotels must tackle now

From blurring distribution channels to rising commissions and defensive pricing, it is a challenging environment but hotels are fighting back, finds a recent white paper.

https://www.eyefortravel.com/revenue-and-data-management/5-distribution-dilemmas-hotels-must-tackle-now

Hotels need to learn, remember and predict a guest’s specific preferences to offer them a unique, sellable combination.

In an attributed-based model, the concept of room types is eliminated; instead consumers select from a list of attributes – for example a king bed with a sea view on a high floor – to creating a room that meets their needs. Each attribute adds an incremental price to the base room rate.

https://www.traveldailymedia.com/personalisation-2point0/

Booking.com decoupling attractions bookings from hotel reservations

Booking.com is expected to announce Wednesday at a conference in Europe that it is debuting an offering in 10 European and Middle Eastern cities that enables customers to book tours and attractions on a standalone basis without having first to book a hotel room.

https://skift.com/2019/05/15/booking-drops-hotel-requirement-to-book-tours-and-activities/

Hotels: Navigating the complexity of online travel

Rather than resisting new technology and global players, Expedia has called on the hotel industry to be optimistic about the opportunities that lie ahead.

http://www.travelweekly.com.au/article/navigating-the-complexity-of-online-travel/

Google experiments with new hotel search layout

Google continues to iterate on its hotel search interface and experience for destination searches. In a new testing experience, clicking on any property in the local pack directs a user to the hotel search page. The clicked property has its card pinned to the top of the page with property information expanded to the full width of the card section.

https://koddi.com/google-experiments-with-new-hotel-search-layout/

 

Two-way chat, a game changer for guests and revenue

By incorporating chat and messaging features within a native app (versus integrating third-party apps), hotels own the experience, data, and security.

https://medium.com/runtriz/two-way-chat-a-game-changer-for-guestsand-revenue-96092dbb7fc

Winding Tree executes “first” hotel booking transaction on public blockchain

The company’s distribution platform was successfully tested by Hobo Hotel Stockholm, a member of the Nordic Choice Hotels group, completing the first-ever hotel booking on a public blockchain.

https://blocktribune.com/winding-tree-executes-first-hotel-booking-transaction-on-public-blockchain/

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The Week, That Was – May 2019 Week 2

In five minutes or less, keep track of the most important news of the week, curated just for you. We present to you hand – picked news on latest industry perspectives and some general updates. Read on!!

eRevMax expands in Indonesia with new demand partner

Indonesia based Hoterip.com, one of the fastest growing online travel agencies in Asia, has completed two-way XML integration with travel technology specialist eRevMax to offer online channel management and reservation delivery solution to its growing base of hotel customers. The seamless interface will allow hotels using RateTiger and RTConnect platforms to update rates and availability and receive reservations generated through the channel in real-time

https://www.erevmax.com/ratetiger-news/ratetiger-news-archive/may2019-erevmax-expands-in-indonesia-with-new-demand-partner.html

Online Reviews Still Important But Craze is Slowing Down

Revinate published their 2019 Global Hotel Reputation Benchmark Report, filled with insights to help travel marketers compare and optimize their own online reputation management approach. Google gas overtaken Booking in the #1 position, as both sites are now dominating the field, with TripAdvisor coming in as distant third. While 74% of reviews were posted on four sites in 2017, a greater percentage is now contentrated in only the top 3 – Google, Booking and TripAdvisor.

https://fredericgonzalo.com/en/2019/04/10/online-reviews-still-important-but-craze-is-slowing-down/

Hotel industry has to invest more in technology

For some, the hotel industry requires a fundamentally different notion to how it sells and packages merchandise, physical goods and experiences.

http://hotelnewsnow.com/Articles/295159/Hotel-tech-execs-call-for-industry-to-invest-partner

Customer loyalty in a hyper-segmented hotel landscape

While many hotel branding companies have recently announced reforms in their rewards structures, their programs are still primarily based on a point redemption system.

https://www.hotel-online.com/press_releases/release/customer-loyalty-in-a-hyper-segmented-hotel-landscape#When:18:20:44Z

Webinar: Drive loyalty through a personalized journey

In this webinar, experts from leading hospitality and hotel tech companies will share their insights and strategies on how to enhance customer loyalty.

https://try.traveltripper.com/celebrate-and-nurture-your-guests-webinar/?utm_source=hotelmarketing&utm_medium=pr&utm_campaign=nurture-your-guest-webinar&utm_content=landing-page

What impact Airbnb might have on the hotel industry in another recession

In 2008, Airbnb was only just launching and really wasn’t a major player, however things may be a little different the next time around, as consumers booking habits have changed and their accommodation preferences have evolved.

https://www.kalibrilabs.com/demystifying-distribution/2019/5/7/what-impact-might-airbnb-have-on-the-hotel-industry-in-another-recession/?ref=hotelmarketing_com

Corporate travel: Sabre survey reveals trends shaping booking behaviour in Asia Pacific

Sabre reveals the results of a survey that compiles insight from over 70 corporate travel management companies (TMCs) from across Asia Pacific, revealing the latest trends in terms of regional bookings.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sabre-corporate-travel-survey-reveals-trends-shaping-booking-behavior-in-asia-pacific-300843880.html

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