Technology has massively influenced and assisted hotel groups to manage their daily activities.
From online booking to smart hotel rooms, every facility that can simplify the work of your staff is welcome. And what about your guests? They are rapidly changing their behaviours and needs, requiring more personalised and engaging services. And more than ever, you need to offer them innovative systems to fulfill their expectations.
When staying a hotel, people want to feel a sense of freedom, comfort, or relaxation, which will be associated with the hotel brand. When ask what makes a hotel stay a good one, 90% of millennials said they would be interested in checking-in in a hotel through their mobile phones and skip slow service and long lines.
Mobile check-in is a way to empower your guests to check-in at anytime prior to arrival and upgrade their stay. The online check-in facility helps to improve your relationship with your guests, create lasting experiences and enhance brand loyalty.
Airlines have been using online check-in for years and travelers love them. There's no doubt it's a handy and speedy solution that facilitates both the company and its customers. And just like them, your hotel can introduce this system for the benefit of your hotel staff and your guests.
Below there are 7 reasons why online check-in for hotels is a must.
1) It's convenient
Regardless of your hotel's target customer (millennial, business people, backpackers or seniors), everybody is in a hurry and needs convenient ways to help hasten their tasks. They will love your hotel brand if you offer them an advanced check-in that they can complete on their mobile phones, tablets or desktop whenever and wherever they prefer.
2) It reduces check-in queues
When your guests arrive at your property, they might have spent many hours travelling to your location. Travelers loathe traditional check-in queues, and most of them would just want to bypass reception. By offering an online check-in, you give a quicker way for your guests to start their experience at your hotel, as well as an alternative to save time and avoid queues. Now your guests can go straight to their room and relax after their busy journey.
3) It improves customer relationship
Think about the moment your guest approaches your hotel's front desk. How much information the receptionist needs to gather from the guest at the check-in desk? How long does it take to gather all those details, perform the check-in steps in your PMS, cut the room key, sign the paper work and authorise their credit card? Was there enough time to really connect with the guest? Now, if they arrive with the completed check-in on their phones, your hotel front desk agent can have a meaningful conversation with your new guest. You have time to understand their expectations and personal needs. Your hotel will be successful in delivering relevant and customised information, explaining in detail what sets your brand apart from its competitors, and providing a higher level of service to your guests.
Your guests will have booked to stay in your hotel from many different distribution channels. Many of which did so on OTAs or with travel agents. The online check-in system will encourage all your guests to check-in online, regardless of the source of booking, and interact with your brand website. You have the chance to showcase your brand identity and hotel services, as well as to encourage them to book direct next time.
5) It balances your staff workload
Every hotel has the traditional check-in and check-out busy hours which lead to large queues at the reception desk. What about smoothing out the workload for your reception staff and making your processes more efficient? An online check-in integrated to your Property Management System, such as Opera, gives you a way to gain time at the front desk and improve efficiency for your staff.
6) It enhances guest experience
When does the guest experience start? Is it when they enter the hotel room? Is it the moment they arrive at your hotel? Is it when they book on your brand website? Or is it even earlier, when they are planning their trip and reviewing your website? Regardless of your star rating, your guest experience should start before they arrive at your hotel. Your guest should know prior to arrival that they are going to receive the level of service that your hotel brand offers. The pre-arrival engagement will help you gather your guests' information so you can make them feel special on arrival. When you provide an easy-to-use, simple and straightforward technology to your guests, you are setting the tone for the rest of their stay.
7) It's another source of revenue
Your hotel offers unique services to enhance your guests' stay: room upgrades, SPA treatments, breakfast, fine dining, late check-out and chauffeur services. Research shows that guests are more inclined to book add-ons closer to their arrival date. The average booking window is 30 days prior to arrival date, and most guests are not aware of their travel plans that far in advance. By showcasing your adds-on through the online check-in system, your guests have an opportunity to tailor their stay by purchasing these adds-on. At the same time, it helps to increase online revenue for your hotel.
Introducing an online check-in to your hotel is something we at p3 Hotels can help with. As a technology solutions provider to hotel groups, we're always looking ahead at ground-breaking technology to empower you connect with your guests and maximise results. Click here and contact us to discover how to implement an online check-in for your guests.