What to Look for When Choosing Your Booking Engine24th May 2017
There is a huge variety of hotel booking engines on the market today and like most businesses out there, you will be looking for great quality and stand out features, all for a reasonable price.
But how do you choose a hotel booking system at a time where there are so many options laid out in front of you? As one of the UK’s leading hotel management companies, we thought we would share a list of things to look out for when choosing your booking engine.
When viewing a potential booking engine, put yourself in the position of someone who has never booked a room online before. Can you easily navigate the engine to find the room, rates and information you need? A great test for this is to count the number of pages or screens that the user needs to go through before completing the booking. The simpler the customer journey, the better.
The style and presentation of the hotel website needs to feed through to the aesthetics of the booking engine. A good booking engine will allow you to customise the theme so that it matches the look and feel of your current website. Are the photos and rates in plain sight and well laid out? Do they use “negative space” correctly to ensure the user’s focus falls to call to action or is the screen cluttered with too much information?
Seamless website integration and consistency is key. Find out if other integration features such as channel manager integration are included. When your booking engine doesn’t sync with your channel manager, your booking sites don’t have access to live room inventory, which can end up in guests booking unavailable rooms.
Revenue Director at M&T, Naveed Khan, said “Here at M&T we tend to look for booking engines which are able to directly interface with our property management systems to provide customers with real time availability and best available rates”.
Write a list of desired functionality for your hotel booking system and think about whether your most important features are included. If not, ask if they can add a feature for an additional fee. It is also worth asking for the full list of features and widgets available.
Rates should be clearly displayed. Users want to see the savings they’ll make by selecting certain dates. Does the booking engine show the user they have made the right choice and that they are getting a great deal? If not, look elsewhere.
“When looking for booking engines, the key is to offer our customers a seamless booking experience starting from multi room booking functionality, ability for upsells and options to sell different room types with pictures” said Naveed Khan, Revenue Director at M&T.
For further information or advice on choosing the perfect booking engine for your hotel please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Michels & Taylor, one of the best hotel management companies around.
Call us on 020 8905 2500 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org today.