With the constant evolution of technology and new trends coming and going, its important for hotels to keep a track of what is happening around them. Knowing the impact of new technology and how it can affect revenue is key to running any business successfully today. The same applies to the travel and hospitality sector which is one of the most dynamic industries today. Given the huge dependence on guest behavior, hoteliers need to know how to influence key decision makers and be visible at every key touch point. Here are some upcoming trends that we feel will have an impact on the industry and hoteliers should take notice and prepare well in advance.
1) Data explosion with 5G Network:
The new 5G, with its superfast download speed and other benefits, is sure to have a massive impact on the expectations and behavior of mobile phone users. One can readily access virtual reality and videos and the 5G network is likely to bring a huge change in how guests research and book travel and hotel. Users will have the opportunity to visualize themselves in their preferred room instead of only seeing the photos.
‘Mobile-first strategy’ will likely rule the trend. Google, being the early adopter like it is, may reward hotels that pro-actively focus on their mobile strategy and penalize the ones that are not at all mobile friendly. Thus, hotels need to make sure their brand website is mobile friendly and has a good page load speed. It’s important to develop mobile focused marketing strategy to capture this segment of guests that like to book things on mobile.
2) Virtual and Augmented Reality:
Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) will get a big boost with 5G network. However, AR proves to be more realistic than VR to hoteliers. Why? Real environment is replaced by a virtual one by VR. To visualize this, one needs wearable technology. On the contrary, AR introduces digital components into real environment that one can easily access with smartphones.
Some hotels have already started using this technology like AR-enabled maps and brochures. It is a great opportunity for hotel industry to enhance in-stay and pre-stay experience of their guests.
3) Dominance of Videos:
Conveying information through videos is more effective than words because people today prefer watching than reading, especially in mobile phones. Do you know that YouTube is the second largest search engine globally? Facebook too generates huge traffic from its videos every day. With the emergence of 5G, videos will achieve greater importance.
To future-proof business, hoteliers have to invest in entertaining, informational and relevant video advertising. According to Google, videos are likely to capture 80% of online media in the coming years.
With so many innovative technologies coming up in the market, hotels have to optimize these opportunities to reap the maximum benefit for their business.