hotel sales reservations team member following up on a booking that wasn't completed by the traveller

Does your hotel reach out to potential guests that contacted you but didn’t book a room at your hotel? Have you ever wondered why that happened and how it can impact your revenue?

NB: This is an article from asksuite

Follow-ups are a well-known strategy in sales. However, as it is a concept frequently used with B2B (Business to Business) negotiations, many hoteliers simply do not invest in it. This can be a huge mistake. After all, when we talk about reservations, we are talking about complex sales, where the purchase is not always made on the first contact between customer and company.

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Often, the leads (i.e., the potential guests) have many concerns in mind and tend to get lost on the infinitude of hotels options they have been researching.

Many times they also depend on other people to decide (family, work), need to check the budget to see what is within their reach, evaluate competitors, or are simply not convinced about the value your property offers to them. These are a few factors that make booking a hotel a complex decision.

That is why it is important that the hotel takes the initiative, contact, and follow up on the potential guests throughout the entire booking process. This increases – a lot! – the chances of success.

Contrary to what many people think, follow-up is not the synonym of being insistent and boring. Businesses — in our case, hotels — must get rid of that image of being “pushy” with bookings.

It’s also critical that hotels develop new ways of approaching potential guests. Using the old strategy of “just checking if they’ve been able to take a look at the proposal” is not the road to take anymore.

There are more effective ways to keep in touch with potential guests and persuade them to book with you.

In this article, we’ll look at:

  • sales follow-up
  • the main reasons travelers abandon reservations
  • a step-by-step guide to applying the follow-up strategy in different channels

What are Follow-Ups?

In the sales context (in our case, we are talking about reservations), follow-up means taking actions after a contact or proposal presentation to make the lead advance in the booking process.

This strategy aims to:

  • shorten the booking cycle
  • reduce the Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC), optimizing the business’ results.

A follow-up can also be applied when the guest or future guest has given up on making the reservation and abandoned the online booking process. When this happens, a salesperson should try to contact that lead to find out what happened.

More often than you might think, a well-done follow-up strategy can revert these cases and convince the lead to proceed with the reservation.

As hotels have been embracing new technologies, follow-up becomes even more important. Nowadays the most part of the booking process (if not all of it) is performed by the potential guests themselves, with no help from any salesperson or hotel employee.

That means it is easier for the customers to walk away from the process if they feel like it.  In other words, to “abandon the hotel cart”.

Read rest of the article at asksuite