Instant gratification is a powerful, and alluring, promise – and one that resonates with time-strapped consumers more than ever before. In a faster-than-the-speed-of-life culture, the art of “patience is a virtue” has been left by the wayside. Time, particularly vacation time spent with family and friends, is a precious asset, and hotels that make a difference to ensure guests maximize their time in all the right ways are poised to win with profits and customer loyalty.
Crafting and delivering authentic experiences is central to today’s definition of luxury, and the advent of new technology is empowering hotels to achieve this – and save time – on an even higher, smarter level. It’s the next wave of the digital revolution – the ability (for both hotels and consumers) to easily access a catalog of carefully vetted high-end services, such as villa rentals, private jets, luxury car services and yacht experiences, and flawlessly confirm a booking instantly.
When guests aspire for more (think arranging a private yacht sailing in the middle of their trip or the last-minute decision to charter a private jet to their next destination), hotels can gratify that customer request instantaneously thanks to seamless booking technology without sacrificing quality. It’s the next market disruption poised to impact the hospitality landscape – five ways instant booking technology is streamlining hotel operations and elevating guest satisfaction.
#1 – The Concierge Role Revitalized
Providing personalized service and delivering a “wow-worthy” on-property experience is central to the role of the concierge, and instant booking technology adds a new dimension to the team’s capabilities. From a computer, tablet or smartphone app, the concierge can view availability in real-time of private jet charters, yacht services and more, and guarantee the booking instantly from anywhere in the world, 24/7.
It’s a huge operational boost that bolsters efficiency and responsiveness – a distinct game-changer in the market. Instead of the concierge waiting hours or days for confirmations, bookings can be completed bigger, better and faster, and vacation experiences can remain ever-evolving. Immidia is a new company embracing this idea and is launching proprietary technology later this year, on a global scale, targeting four- and five-star hotels with a discriminating luxury clientele.
The seamless nature of the instant booking process redefines the role of the concierge, allowing them to focus more attention on the implementation of an unrivaled guest experience.
#2 – Welcome a New Revenue-Generating Avenue
The opportunity of new revenue streams is unquestionably attractive to today’s hoteliers, and certain instant booking technology platforms endeavor to fuel that flow of money to the benefit of the hotel – in the form of commissions earned on each booking, whether it is made by the concierge or the guests themselves.
Hotels can white-label the technology product and promote to guests the guaranteed, instant reserving of luxury experiences as their own service. Through a link on a hotel’s website and social media channels, guests get redirected to a customized web interface (and unique URL) powered by the technology provider, so it appears as if the convenience of booking luxury experiences instantly is a special feature of the hotel.
It’s efficient. It’s secure. And, hotels can truly win with increased revenue from commissions and the added bonus of strengthened guest satisfaction, usually translating into repeat business and positive word-of-mouth (and social media) praise.
#3 – Regain the Advantage and Reclaim Lost Business
Today’s luxury hotel guests don’t always know what high-end extras might appeal to them in advance of their trip. Sitting poolside or over dinner with family and friends spurs ideas for enhancing a leisure vacation, such as that last-minute limousine, villa stay or private plane.
Whether a guest seeks out the concierge for assistance or if they connect to the hotel’s website to reserve on their own, instant booking technology actually affords the flexibility of making last-minute decisions thanks to immediate confirmations. Instead of eroding a hotel’s profitability potential, instant booking and confirmation of luxury experiences can effectively shift the process by adding a distinct competitive edge for hotels, allowing them to reclaim lost business – and boost their bottom line.
And, when the technology is backed by a 24/7 guest relations department that can answer any questions, it’s the ideal blend of technology with the human element. In the world of hospitality, once your guest is indeed your guest, keep them in the fold.
#4 – The Company You Keep Matters
The concept of booking “instant luxury experiences” is only as strong and impressive as the suppliers delivering on the promise. Was the villa or yacht stocked with the right food and beverage as requested? Was check-in for the private plane flawless? Did the suppliers execute the luxury experiences impeccably?
The technology platform and the supplier partners are equally crucial – it’s about embracing the right combination in order to provide the finest services for valued guests. Immidia, for example, vets suppliers across the globe through a stringent process to ensure they have a proven track record of flawless delivery. The quality, not the quantity, of suppliers is what matters.
When bookings are instant, there is no room for error – so the relationships with and confidence in suppliers must be unwavering. If the process runs smoothly, and satisfaction abounds among customers and hotels, commitments are deepened, a benefit for everyone.
#5 – Heightened Guest Satisfaction Drives Customer Loyalty
Guest loyalty is often considered the holy grail of hospitality. You covet it – and then once you’ve attained it, do everything in your power to maintain it.
The hospitality space is mega-competitive, and service is one of the “make or break” elements that moves the profitability needle in either direction. Front desk service. Housekeeping service. Food and beverage service. And, when guests crave those last-minute luxury enhancements to their vacation, an instant booking digital solution is another important service that raises the bar of satisfaction. Such prompt gratification strengthens the customer-hotel relationship, which in turn generates a deep allegiance to a property. It’s an inspiring cycle of contentment for hotels.
Thanks to new technology that drives the instant booking of luxury experiences, hotels can reimagine what it means to gratify the immediate wants of today’s discerning and demanding high-end customers. It’s the next advantage in the hospitality space. A guest’s desires are immediately satisfied, and the hotel is the hero. Welcome to mutual gratification for the 21st century.