Ask most hoteliers how they attract prospective guests and they’ll tell you about their marketing campaigns and loyalty programs. Ironically, the lowest hanging fruit for most hotels goes mostly “unpicked.”
Every day, hotels ignore millions of relevant consumers at the very edge of converting to real revenue. Prospects who have already visited their websites and searched the booking engine for their travel dates.
Here’s what happens: A visitor will go far enough into your booking engine to see what your rates are. Afterwards, they are driven out by a number of reasons, including an overcomplicated booking process, concern that rates may be lower elsewhere, or an urge to head to TripAdvisor to read reviews.
There is a massive opportunity to regain those lost visitors and reservations. After all, it’s always easier to win business from a previous visitor who has already made it halfway to purchase, rather than from a traveler who has never heard of you before. Hotels investing in reservation recovery technology are transforming abandoned reservations into big revenue opportunities.
Here are four easy ways you can win back those abandoned bookings:
1. Immediate Capture of Email Addresses
Once an online visitor searches for their dates and chooses a room type, require their email address as the first field in the booking process. That way, you now have the data necessary to retarget them if they abandon.
2. Automated Custom Emails (Dates and Room Preferences)
After a visitor abandons your hotel’s booking engine, your booking engine should send out a specific email with a personalized greeting that thanks them for visiting your website and a reminder to book. This is where you can offer a limited-time incentive and sell them even more on the experience of staying with you and booking with you directly.