Hotel GDS Description – how to get it right?

The GDS still is, and will most likely remain, a noteworthy channel for ARI distribution and reservations for hotels. Both recreation and corporate travel operators utilize it to search and book hotels. Numerous OTA sites likewise utilize the GDS for room stock. Hence, it is critical that your hotel is available on GDS.

We have put together a few tips and tricks on how hotels are getting the most out of their GDS channels through descriptive content. The Hotel GDS Description (HOD) goes about as your hotel’s electronic leaflet. It is conceivably your brand brochure for tour operators and travel agents to access and get all the pertinent details with your property description, hotel amenities and data about neighborhood attractions etc. Here are the top GDS HOD Tips:

  1. General hotel description – Try to keep your hotel description very targeted – put the hotel USPs and try to provide key differentiators and why a guest must chose your hotel over competitor’s.
  2. Facilities and Services – List out all your amenities and services – provide restaurant details, timings, cuisine along with details of in-house services like salon, spa, gym, pool etc. Also, drop in a line about safety and security as these tend to be a key concern today.
  3. Area Information: Mention any specific locational advantage you might have. Or else list out the nearby attractions to draw interest. Whether your hotel is downtown or near the airport, remember to put your Geo code for correct location identification.
  4. Property Address – Make sure you put your hotel’s full address and zip code correctly. Sabre uses the official street address to geocode the property. If you don’t have a street number, use 1, to ensure better visibility and bookability.
  5. Driving Directions – Provide details on the easiest way to reach your property, whether it is from the airport, train or bus stations or from downtown. Also, provide a phone number in case a guest is stuck and wants to connect to the hotel.
  6. Room Type Name – GDS’s provide 30 characters to cover this, so be creative. But remember to make sure that it’s easy to understand the room type by the name you provide to it.
  7. Room Type Description – Try to use this section to attract your guests with room details and inclusions like in-room coffee machine, free wi-fi, luxury bathing products, etc. The description should also adhere to the kind of property it is – luxury, corporate, budget etc.
  8. Presentation – It is best to keep the description language crisp and fluid. Travel agents prefer short sentences or bulleted description. It helps to capture relevant points while covering all the necessary information.
  9. Nearby Attractions – Include details about attractions in the area, timings, distance and directions to the place. This makes your hotel more appealing and train your concierge or front office staff to have details about shows /tickets at these attractions.

Keep your Hotel GDS Description up to date. Whenever you introduce a new service or roomtype or if there are new attractions nearby, remember to update your hotel description. Always provide correct information and present in a nice and concise manner. Always keep your USPs on the top to catch the attention of the travel agents.

The Week, That Was – June 2018 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 travel brands should tackle attribution

Knowledge of your customer is a must-have, but complex journeys across multiple devices present travel brands with huge challenges. A new report from EyeforTravel investigates how to conquer attribution. Travel brands need to undertake an extensive and multifaceted approach because attribution requires capturing interactions at so many touchpoints over extended periods and from different devices.

http://www.eyefortravel.com/mobile-and-technology/how-travel-brands-should-tackle-attribution 

eRevMax announces 2-way integration with Nitesoft
The connectivity between RateTiger and Nitesoft PMS has proven to be highly reliable and easy-to-use. It means more sales and higher margins for our hotel customers. They can now exploit the full potential of a vast selection of OTAs, GDSs, Metasearch and Wholesalers available via the eRevMax Channel Ecosystem to expand visibility and revenue potential.

https://goo.gl/RdwgMr

PATA reports Another record year for foreign arrivals into Asia Pacific in 2017
With a cumulative count of 636 million foreign arrivals into the region in 2017, Asia Pacific sets a new record – according to a report released today by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA). The distribution of these arrivals was such, that in terms of the destination regions and sub-regions covered in the report, Asia received the majority of these arrivals in 2017 with a 72% share, followed by the Americas with 24% and the Pacific with the remaining four percent.

https://www.hospitalitynet.org/performance/4088660.html

GDPR: Why Hoteliers Should Take the new EU Regulations Very Seriously
New EU rules on data protection – or GDPR – , seven years in the making, come/came into effect on May 25. The advice from IT experts to hoteliers is: take the new rules very seriously or risk heavy fines of up to 20 million euros or four percent of the company’s global turnover, whichever is higher.

https://www.hospitalitynet.org/opinion/4088620.html

Sojern Offers Insights on Early Summer Travel Trends Around the Globe
Sojern published its latest Global Travel Insights report, which offers a quarterly look at travel trends from around the world. Sojern’s data shows that the 2018 World Cup is a primary travel driver across Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the summer. Looking at travelers’ paths to purchase, mid-east and African tourists are opting to either return to their families following the end of Ramadan on 15th June, or they are immediately beginning to travel for the World Cup

https://www.sojern.com/blog/global-travel-trends-report-summer-2018/

Is working on vacation key to enjoying it?
Among the key findings:
⅓ of workers intend on being available to work on vacation.
For many, working during vacation helps them enjoy vacation more.
Men are 10% more likely than women to say they plan on working during vacation.
Millennials mirror the working habits of their boss when they take a vacation.
https://ehotelier.com/global/2018/05/29/working-vacation-key-enjoying/

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

Thanks and have a good day!

eRevMax completes integration with hotel management system provider hoteliport


Hotel connectivity expert eRevMax has completed two-way integration with Scottish hospitality solution provider hoteliport. Through this partnership, hotels using the hoteliport PMS will be able to update all the channels available in the eRevMax Channel Ecosystem, directly from their hoteliport dashboard. 
hoteliport Hotel Management Software, developed by  acdit.com, equips hoteliers with a rich suite of tools for management of reservations, rate-plans, agents, sales channels, billing and performance reporting. 
“Our integration with eRevMax into hoteliport connects our PMS channel manager module with a host of Online Travel Agents, GDS and meta-search solutions and compliments the already rich suite of hotel management tools that hoteliport provides. Now, hoteliport automatically distributes rates and availability and downloads new bookings into the PMS via RTConnect, saving hotels countless hours of work on various OTA extranet sites while optimizing their online marketing efforts,” said Craig Dunn, Founder, hoteliport
“Our interface with hoteliport provides small-to-medium sized hotels ability to access and manage a whole range of online channels cost effectively without worrying about maintaining inventory manually across each booking website. A greater number of hotels can now leverage the benefits of our Channel Ecosystem while streamlining their distribution efforts,” said Ashis Saha, SVP – Project Management, eRevMax.

With Love from Sao Paulo – Technology Hits and Misses from WTM LATAM

Time is Money!
This statement has never been as valid perhaps as it is today.

I was at WTM Latin America a few days back and realized the truth and depth of this statement while talking to some friends from the industry. Constant news from solution providers and revolutionary technological innovation continues to prove how valuable time is!

For those like me who had their first contact with a computer in the early 90’s and learnt the complicated codes of the GDS used by Varig Airlines (my first job in the industry) – we get amazed by the developments that has happened since then.

Year after year, hotels have had several innovative tools at their disposal to simplify their daily work and facilitate the management of business, but the main concern for them is how to choose the best from among so many options available in the market.

Now let’s talk about Latin American hoteliers in specific. I have been working with hotels in this region for quite some time now and I see that many of them are able to see a new world of opportunities with excellent perspective on improving their room occupancy, RevPAR and overall profits.

However, there are various others that are yet to understand and visualize all the benefits that these new distribution and connectivity tools can provide to their business. We can’t blame them because this technological evolution has been very fast and ran over all the pre-existing models. 

Hoteliers need to adapt to non-fictional reality and try to understand the origin and consequences (both positive and negative) of this evolution.

The new generation of hotel employees is able to adapt more easily to trends and new technologies. For many, the thought of being “stuck” in an office can be the worst nightmare and hence mobility, agility, thinking outside the box and the possibility of managing your work through virtual access to hotel systems is very appealing. This is the era of connected individuals who are constantly sharing with the world what they are doing. They are open to new technologies and apps and are not scared to try anything new.

Think about a Ferrari! Everyone agrees that it is a wonderful car but it just doesn’t make any sense for you to buy it, if you only know how to ride a bicycle. This is one of the most famous analogies that many ‘old school’ hoteliers still make when approached with innovative technologies. They continue to ignore potential growth opportunities that could come their way with the right distribution tools and by selling on the right channels.
They also ignore market changes and think they can continue working like they used to in the 90’s. They think will be able to survive in the market riding their bicycles while their competitors are using Ferraris.

As a result of the advancement of technology, work-flow processes of the past will not survive the current day pressure of hoteliers and is getting altered quickly. Cloud technology and innovative platforms will only help hotels in this increasingly competitive market. In addition to bringing several improvements to the professionalization of the hotel market in Latin America, the greater reflection of this technology adoption will be seen in how hotels effectively meet and exceed guest expectations. 

Karl Marx once said “The production of too many useful things results in too many useless people.”
 
I wish I could show Karl Marx all the technological innovations of our market today and he would, for sure, change his mind. 

Because TIME IS MONEY after all!



This post is by Alex Moura who is the Regional Sales Director for North America, Caribbean & Brazil at eRevMax. He can be reached at alexm@erevmax.com

Host Hotel Systems integrates with eRevMax for seamless online booking connectivity

Host Hotel Systems have recently completed a two-way interface between HostPMS and eRevMax, allowing HostPMS users to fully utilise the advantages of both systems at once. Through this interface the accommodation providers will be able to manage automated online inventory updates, and standardised rate changes across the multiple channels.
Marketing Manager Joao Rodrigues of Host Hotel Systems anticipates that this integration will improve overall customer satisfaction and will give them the ability to expand their distribution portfolio to reach out to vast audience. He also thanks to eRevMax for this integration which removes the need for manual input.
Commenting on the integration Chief Operating Officer of eRevMax, Greg Berman said this integration will help Host customers to get automatic updates in real time across all connected channels.

Using Connect, a SaaS based enterprise connectivity solution from eRevMax; HostPMS users will be able to increase their web presence through greater access to marketing channels.

Le Salon HBS

I was in Avignon on 13th & 14th March 2012 to attend a tradeshow organized by HBS dedicated only to hoteliers. Le Salon HBS is a platform that allows hoteliers to come together and look for commercial solutions to improve sales, occupancy, RevPAR or how to simply manage marketing online and offline. This is a unique opportunity for them to meet other players including online travel agencies, web solution providers, aggregators, channel managers, GDS companies and technology providers among others.

With a good mix of hoteliers, students and suppliers, the discussions revolved around topics like yield management, marketing and social media. With the continuous evolution of online bookings, hoteliers from tier two cities are also starting to acknowledge the need for revenue and channel management solutions. I witnessed this growing awareness as many hoteliers and consultants flocked to the RateTiger stand to know more about our solutions and how it helps.



HBS invited us to deliver a presentation on “How to Maximize Online Revenue?” which I conducted to a receptive audience. Le Salon is the first of its kind event in France and the feedback we received is very encouraging. Moreover, it is a great platform to establish new relations and to track business with existing partners. I look forward to other such interesting events from the HBS stall.

Well done Team HBS!!

Stefan Casimir is Sales Manager – France at eRevMax and is responsible for sale of RateTiger products in the region. He can be reached at stefanc@ratetiger.com

Channel Connectivity: The Changing Trends, Part 1: Yesterday v/s Today


Heads in beds is the key driver for all hotels – you need good daily occupancy to meet your property’s running costs and thereafter make profits. With thousands of hotels listed online, how can you ensure your property stands out from the rest?

As online travel grows, accommodation owners need to position offerings appropriately, using the right channels. Google’s success is based on page ranking through keywords and relevance, all searchers will type in what they want to see and results will be made of popular channels. In other words, on the internet, the more visible and optimized you are, the more customers you will attract to your hotel!

Just 10 years ago the environment was wholly different. Booking a hotel room over the telephone or through a travel agent was the norm as only less than 5% of all travel was booked online. Today the travel booking landscape has changed significantly:

We used to distribute inventory evenly between tour operators, corporate contracts, telesales and the GDS. Most of our business was stable and regular rate changes and inventory changes were not required. Sales departments were busy but not overloaded.

However in recent years the internet has taken over GDS and telesales; a 2010 eTRAK Reservation Sources for Major Hotel Brands Report shows that major hotel brands experienced 52.3% of all reservations coming from the internet compared to 22.9% from GDS and 24.7% from Voice (2006 figures show Internet: 37.6%, GDS: 31.3% and voice: 31.3%).

In this respect let’s take a peek into the developments of Y2K, a significant period in many ways. The internet has been growing at a fast pace with the likes of Expedia, Travelocity, and Priceline having launched in mid-late 1990s during the dot-com boom.  The bubble burst and many online industries had to rebuild their sales model. Online travel was not greatly affected, on the contrary it started to grow – though it meant the offline hotel industry had to start paying attention and, more importantly, hotels had to realize that something was changing.

By 2000 the total annual online hotel booking rate was around 4% of total bookings. In only 10 years this has reached around 35%, according to a report by PhoCusWright’s Global Online Travel Overview Second Edition, 2011.

This goes to prove the ongoing importance of the internet and the changing consumer buying trends. While it took almost a decade to achieve this level of sales, within the maturing APAC market there has been increasing focus on mobile internet as this is adopted faster than the traditional computer access. This is deemed to grow at a faster rate than the internet over the next decade.

With such changes comes the necessity to adapt. Business has become more volatile and requires adequate planning. Product has to be constantly optimized, prices analyzed and yielding performed. Tasks that do sound natural to hotel operation but are still not honed to perfection.

Staff needs training but not only sale is affected. All departments within a hotel need to brush up as the consumer has options to review services with the general public. From rooms division to management, the hotel has to be organized and prepared.

Another factor, often not recognized enough, is that marketing has changed too. Gone are the expenses for costly brochures. Not that we can spend less now, but the likes of Google, Kayak, trivago, Groupon have taken their place, still marketing but a different caliber with different rule sets. Also, some OTA’s require additional commission for better placement. One could argue that this is not just cost of sales but to a degree brand marketing too. A battle the two departments will need to have in order to best place the house.

Check out Channel Connectivity: The changing trends Part 2 next week.