Customer experience is paramount for every hotel chain and B&B. It's like dismantling a bomb. The details of your strategy can hide problems. And even if you do everything right... one mistake can ruin your plan. Do you know what I'm talking about?

Learn the secrets of guest experience in hotels

It's always been important for a hotel to provide a memorable guest experience. Even before the era of online reviews and booking sites. It's the responsibility of all departments to exceed customer expectations. That's the key to success - whether it's a big chain hotel or a boutique B&B.

Just 2 words, but still a backbreaking job. In a way, it's like watering a flower… or dismantling a bomb as aforementioned.
Be extremely cautious. The tiniest details in your plan could be hiding problems that threaten your hotel's reputation.

Even if you do everything right, one mistake can completely sabotage your whole plan.

We have good news, though.

In this article, you will discover the secrets to delivering a great guest experience. And how technology will help you better understand your guests.

 

Guest engagement. What makes customers loyal

Guest experience has traditionally been seen as the sum of all the interactions that your guests have with your hotel.

This starts before the booking process -from the moment they consider you as the best option for their trip or holiday-, and continues until they check out.

It's hard to keep guests happy.

Everything they do, from product consumption to human interactions, will shape your brand. Where should you focus on getting loyal customers?

 

How to improve guest experience in hotels:
Trends and best practices for 2022

People who have worked in receptions know how crucial they are to the guest experience.

If the guests wait too long, get bad service or vague answers to their questions, it will affect the rest of their stay. First impressions count. At least, if your goal is to ensure guest satisfaction.

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That's why you should use technology. Guest Experience OS will help your staff do their jobs better.

Mobile devices can handle a great deal of requests while far from a reception area. With a guest experience OS, customers won't have to ask your staff simple questions, which can be answered better and more quickly.

Especially in hotels with long lines, everything else will go smoothly. But what else will make an impact in their stay?

 

Communication

Communication is essential. Make your guests feel like their happiness matters. Make sure your staff is proactive, responsible, and friendly. Each department needs to be empathic and communicate well. Be accessible. Keep all lines of communication open.

If the guests wait too long, get bad service or vague answers to their questions, it will affect the rest of their stay. First impressions count. At least, if your goal is to ensure guest satisfaction.

 

Convenience

Convenience is a must nowadays. Time is money. We pay premium services to receive a delivery a couple of hours faster than usual. So why would it be different inside a hotel? You need to respect your guest’s time.

And always ask: Is there anything that could be automated during their stay? Are you learning from bad experiences so you can avoid them in the future? Is feedback important to you? Do you realize how important information is to a guest's experience?

 

Timeliness

Waiting makes people angry. We live in a world where everything is instant. In any service industry, timely responses are key to making customers happy.

It's the other way around too. Guest satisfaction will plummet if you don't respond quickly. Untimely replies are a sure sign of poor service. In other words, look at the average waiting time your guests experience at your hotel. Take steps to shorten it. Consider the right technological solution to boost some or all of your processes.

You will impress your guests by choosing the right digital solution. Say your front desk gets backed up all the time. How can you solve the problem? Just let your customers talk to staff on their devices. Your receptionists will be able to deal with the real stuff at the front desk.

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Wow effect

You might be thinking: What’s the so-called wow effect?
It is a special state of mind. The feeling of being surprised by something wonderful or unexpected. How does that relate to hotels?

For example: Tell your guests that they don’t need a plastic key card. Let them know that your mobile phone technology allows them to open the door with their phone. See how they react. That's the WOW factor. Try to make it unique. Try to provide a word-class hotel guest experience.

 

Attitude

Showing your guests that you care is key. 

Let's say your customer drops you a message im real time. "I'm uncomfortable with my pillow.". Can you imagine the effect on her guest experience if you knock on the door with 3 new pillows?

Show helpfulness by going above and beyond. Show genuine interest. These things will move your guests from indifferent to loyal.

Want more ideas to improve your guest experience? You are will like this post

What can technology do for you? Providing hospitality services that anticipate guest needs

A pandemic always ends. So will Covid. Hotels have been hit especially hard. But every cloud has a silver lining. The industry has been forced to jump on the technology bandwagon. First, to meet safety and social distancing standards. Then, to make things more efficient, engaging, and seamless.

OS Guest Experience and contactless solutions are big in the hospitality industry. Why?

  • They boost communication
  • It's easier for staff to do their jobs
  • Information lets you make better decisions

If you want a 10 out of 10 guest experience, you have to anticipate what they want.

Remember "happiness, not gold or prestige, is the ultimate currency".

Proactiveness is key. Attitude, however, is not always enough. What's the deal? You can't monitor everything your guests do. You don't know what they're doing when they're not in the lobby. How can this be resolved? Invest in technology and digital solutions. Make your staff available via chat. 24/7. 

 

AppGuestConnect customers and staff through devices

Remove communication barriers by providing your guests (and staff) with tools to contact you at any time.

Avoid going to reception for simple questions that can be handled more quickly and better from a mobile device. The rest of the process will be smoother, especially in hotels prone to long lines. 

Team Help your staff

Hotel work is not all roses. Particularly when you work at the front desk of a busy lodging. You won't have time. Sharing information day in and day out can get old. It's a hassle.

Some of the duties require you to draw on your soft and people skills. For example, handling complaints, arranging a romantic dinner, keeping an eye on special events, or coordinating with your teammates. That's multitasking at its finest.

Receptionists will often need to do several things at once:

  • Perform all check-in and check-out tasks.
  • Manage online and phone reservation.
  • Provide information about the hotel, rates and amenities.
  • Respond to clients’ complaints in a timely and professional manner.
  • Liaise with housekeeping staff to ensure all rooms are clean and tidy to accommodate guests...

Doesn't sound easy, does it?

That's exactly why hotels are jumping on the technology bandwagon. With the right tools, your staff won't have to waste time on some of these duties.

Having the right guest experience digital tool allows them to keep track of all guest requests and manage them easily and efficiently, no matter where they are. 

Have you heard about the wow effect in hotels? 


Maps Hotel activities, information, and sustainability Do you want to make your hotel more eco-friendly?

Save tons of paper and plastic by putting all the info and services on one screen. That's another way to deliver world class service. Almost everyone cares about the environment these days.

Parallel to that, remember: more information, better decisions.

Patterns could solve a lot of hotel headaches. If you can record everything that happens inside your hotel, you'll have instant feedback and be able to react in real time.

And that, in terms of guest experience, is priceless.

 

How to wow your hotel guests with tech solutions in 2022

If you want to impress your guests, you should keep some tech trends in mind. Your goal is to create an experience that makes them say: "that was awesome, they really cared about me". Consider these features:

 

1. Your mobile as a key

We mentioned this feature before. Hotels around the world are catching on to this trend. With mobile key functionality, guests can access their rooms (and other hotel areas where a magnetized plastic key card is required) via their phones.

Once the guest is within a few feet of the door, they just have to open the hotel's app and tap unlock.

See how much time and money you can save by replacing these keys. Lastly, but not least, don't forget to promote your technology as eco-friendly.
This will help you exceed your guests' expectations.

Get to know more about Mobile Room Key

 

2. Food ordering and QR Codes

The way we eat is changing dramatically. A little under one decade ago, restaurant-quality meal delivery was still largely limited to foods such as pizza, burgers and Chinese.

Food delivery has become a global phenomenon in recent years. Hotels have started implementing ordering systems to keep up. Plus, it's cheaper and faster. 

This new ordering trend is heavily reliant on QR codes. Restaurants and hotels can use the feature to print these QR codes -saving money and paper- and leave them on tables.

Once the QR code is scanned, the customer can browse through the menu and place an order. World-class user experience. 

The restaurant will know what table placed the order (saving time), and then bring out food when it's ready. Many hotels have developed this system in their swimming pools so the guests can get food from the hammocks. It also makes room service easier.

Shortening the path to purchase reduces the chance that you will lose the sale to unnecessary waits. Customers love it.

Get to know more about Service Reservation System

 

3. Surveys. Improve the guest evaluation before they leave the hotel

Digitalization provides an opportunity for the industry. We can go the extra mile with operation systems, apps and technology to raise the level of hotel guest service. 

How can you boost the evaluation of your guests? Well. Don’t settle for a simple “ok” when you can strive for “the best”. Measure your guests’ satisfaction and analyze their comments in detail and in real time to identify pain points and possible improvement areas. And to react immediately too. 

In order to provide the best customer experience, you need to know how your guests feel at any given moment. Collect qualitative and quantitative feedback for each of your services and facilities so you can identify where you might be able to improve.

guest experience. Surveys

Consider the scenario that someone tells you the food was a bit cold after the delivery. Online booking platforms might mention this during the post-stay period. Now you'll get a chance to respond before the guests leave. 

Either apologize or send a bottle of wine... or an ice cream treat. 

The decision ultimately rests with you, but you now have the opportunity to make a bad situation positive. It won't take long for you to achieve world class customer loyalty.

Get to know more about Surveys and Feedback

 

4. Data driven decisions lead to memorable hotel experiences

There is a trend in the hotel industry toward digitization, the use of digital technologies to change business models and generate new revenue and value. 

However, the maturity stage challenges -which will be faced in the coming years - point to one thing:
The hotel staff and management will be able to visualize customer data and get detailed reports on guest activity in real-time, so they will always be on top of things. 

You'll be able to make better decisions. Like identifying growth opportunities and tailoring promotions for better profits (hyper personalization)

Get to know more about Guests Insights

 

To summarize, hotel success is all about the guest experience. That's how you build customer loyalty. That’s how you will make the most of your loyalty programs. You'll struggle if you don't provide a unique experience. The issue is a very sensible one, where one mistake occasionally matters more than 100 good ones. Communication, organization, attitude… 

You must prepare your staff, otherwise, operations managers will find a gap between their strategy and the results. 

It is important to keep your employees motivated by helping them. Especially those who need to repeat the same information every week. Especially those who spend time and effort on activities that can be automated. 

Because of this, technology will play an important role in the guest experience. There are more efficient methods of communicating between a member of the hotel industry and their customers now. 

And, since information is easily accessible and transferred between them, this often limits or even eliminates customer service mistakes and errors.

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