Though hotels have been slow to adopt technology historically, hotel tech adoption is accelerating faster than ever. Since COVID-19, quick technology adoption within the hotel industry has become vital. And with technology, hotels can do more with less. The right technology can enable hotels to operate with fewer employees and thus reduces the property’s staffing needs, which is paramount in today’s staff shortage crisis. Here are five tech products your hotel needs during the pandemic and even after to keep up with customer expectations, employee safety, and more.
1. Up-selling Via In-room Tablets
Up-selling is a newer trend that’s becoming more imperative. The front desk is no longer the only party responsible for up-selling – Reservation, Concierge, and Guest Relationship departments all play a part.
Volo can generate revenue through a variety of up-sell and cross-sell opportunities. Volo is an in-room tablet solution that gives your guests interactive, touchscreen access to all of your hotel amenities. Volo proves to be a profit center, not a cost, by driving revenue through up-sells and cross-sells of food, beverage, and amenities, and even push notifications for promotions or direct bookings. Volo also helps save money by ensuring real-time service recovery and improved reputation management, and cost savings from staff efficiency and reduced printing. Ultimately, more engagement and a better guest experience translate to real and measurable value to any hotel.
2. Guest Messaging
Guest Messaging Software (GMS) is a software platform that enables hotels to engage with their guests through various messaging apps in real-time. The messaging software allows hotels to send transactional messages, reply to guests, and manage guest requests. With this kind of text messaging platform, hotels can increase guest engagement, improve customer service scores, and get insight to their guests’ experiences.
Until now, most businesses have held back from using popular messaging services in the belief that they are reserved for chatting with friends and family. However, recognition of the convenience of real-time text chats with hotel guests is growing. Most guests would simply rather send hotel staff a message than call or speak in person.
Hotels will need to have the necessary resources in place to handle real-time texts in order to ensure acceptable response times or that a chatbot can answer the most common queries. Messaging is an area where artificial intelligence is helping. Messaging AI can even be used to simply route conversations to the right departments. The benefits are likely to be increased customer satisfaction levels and up-selling opportunities.
The Loop Experience Platform’s messaging service allows guests to chat with your staff seamlessly. Loop is an omni-channel service that aggregates all of your messaging channels – whether it be email, SMS, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Twitter Direct Messages, or other service. With Loop, you have the necessary resources in place to handle real-time texts in order to ensure acceptable response times.
3. Staff Tipping
Tipping has always been an essential part of the hospitality industry. Tips don’t just help hotel staff make ends meet; they contribute to a culture of financial wellness and security. However, fewer guests carry cash on them than in earlier years. With eTip, your guests can tip your housekeeping or concierge staff with the touch a button without needing cash. Tipping has never been easier or more convenient, and your staff will certainly appreciate it!
As COVID-19 spreads, many hotels instituted new contact-less measures of check-in, amplified deep-cleaning methods, and other hygienic implementations to assure guests’ safety and reduce physical interaction without losing that personal, human touch that sets hospitality apart. However, these new touchless practices are by no means exclusive to a pandemic year. Tipping methodologies are part of that touch-less change, too. Hotels are adopting cash-less tipping solutions like eTip to help reduce the spread of germs while keeping staff paid well.
4. In-room Fitness
With Openfit, your guests can enjoy workouts in the comfort of their room. Guests will benefit from complimentary on-demand and live classes viewed on a tablet in the privacy of their rooms with no time constraints or the need to access a gym or fitness equipment. Openfit’s platform allows for you to save money on staffing and maintaining a fitness center.
“Fitness and wellness has become a top priority for travelers, with studies showing that 48% of guests rank a property’s wellness options as ‘very important,’” says Volo Solutions President and CEO, Benjamin Londa. “With hotels adapting to the new normal, the option of an in-room fitness amenity could very well become a necessity.”
Guests are also becoming increasingly concerned with the health and safety of themselves in crowded and unkept spaces. A hotel’s gym is no exception. Give guests multiple options for fitness opportunities by using in-room fitness apps like Openfit.
5. Panic Buttons
With the sweeping implementation of new safety standards and legislations, hoteliers are quickly shifting focus towards employee protection. Historically, the hospitality industry has been guest-centric, but recently there’s been more attention to employee safety. Even before the pandemic, reports of unsafe working conditions for hotel staff were in the media. Fortunately, technology is now able to keep workers safe. Next-generation panic buttons are leading the way as the true future of worker safety.
Panic buttons also serve to reduce any legal fees, maintain your hotel’s reputation, can be deployed quickly on-site, and are just the right thing to have on your property.