In 2022, a Meetings Booking Engine is a must have for hotels, meeting venues and workspace suppliers. Booker's and meeting planners have come to expect it. Gone are the days where customers had to call or email hotels to check for availability and rates. The Meetings Booking Engine saves time by doing this instantaneously. There are a lot of booking engine benefits. But before we dive into them, it’s important to know what a Booking Engine is.
To put it simply a Booking Engine is an app or call it a web service on a hotel or venue’s website that books, captures and processes direct online reservations. Listing on them brings advantages such as reaching a large and new audience and increased bookings. Hotels generate more revenue and new leads.
A direct Booking Engine is a way for hotels to digitally serve their customer without the use of expensive human intervention. It is a way to get direct bookings, cutting out the reservation agents spending too much time and therefore unnecessary costs on trying to convert a request into a booking. This way hotels can reap the benefits of a Booking Engine which are greater than those of manual intervention. The hotels and event venues eliminate the drawbacks, become smarter through live data and can yield with the use of machine learning.
Now that you know what a Booking Engine is, lets take a look at how it works.
The Booking Engine plugs into your hotel website and processes secure online reservations made through your website. The data captured is then sent to your property management system (PMS) automatically so you can access and manage the meetings bookings.
The Booking Engine displays your hotel’s rates and availability in real-time. It allows guests to select their dates and finalise their reservation. Other features include automation of confirmation emails.
Setting up Meetingselect’s Booking Engine is a simple three step process.
Now you know what a booking engine is and how it works. Its finally time to move onto the benefits. The first one being direct bookings.
Perhaps the most obvious booking engine benefit is more direct bookings. Bookers can easily check which rooms or working spaces are available, when and for how much, without ever speaking to a person. This has a big advantage for your customers as they want to know what is available immediately, and at the same time it keeps you competitive. No more old fashioned web forms or waiting for days to get an email reply.
Moreover, with direct bookings you can increase conversions as the risk of losing an RFP due to a late or no response is greatly reduced.
By giving meeting planners the ability to instantly book with Meetingselect’s booking engine you can effortlessly convert browsers to bookers, a huge booking engine benefit. Since they can see availability and rates immediately and in real time, it will save them a lot of time and hassle. Having such an easy and seamless booking process will definitely impress meeting planners and browsers who come across your website, thereby increasing the chances of a booking.
Trust is very important between hotels and customers and it is perhaps the biggest booking engine benefit. It shows you are innovative, easy to work with and putting your customer’s need first. This establishes a feel of trust
A pretty cool booking engine benefit is that if meeting planners want something extra to elevate the meeting experience, they are not only able to see what each meeting room offers but can also add extra perks. This is a great way to build relationships with meeting planners. You can upsell automatically online with additional amenities that meeting planners have become used to. For example Weframe session boards, Travel or Parking tickets, Social drinks and more.
Moreover, if you offer Free extra perks, it will attract more customers. offering these free perks is a good trade.
Efficiency is a great booking engine benefit. Depending on the choice of channels with whom the meetings booking engine is integrated with, reservations and availability are updated immediately and automatically across all channels. No more manually updating in PMS systems, excel sheets or forms. This way everyone is 100% aware of what’s going on and what arrangement’s need to be made.
Furthermore, administrative tasks are also simplified as you don’t need to respond to emails or accept reservations over the phone. Instead the time saved will finally be used for interacting with guests , solving more complex requests in person and share more time on the work floor to show your hospitality. A booking engine also extends your business hours as it works round clock without needing any manpower. Live availability, 24/7 around the clock, tailoring to your customer’s expectations in the digital age .
Collecting data is an important booking engine benefit. Guests and meeting planners are demanding a more personalised experience. In fact its a top 10 meeting trend of 2021. Collecting data can give an insight into what your guests enjoy and tailor marketing campaigns to attract a certain demographic of guests.
A booking engine allows customers to book from a laptop, tablet or mobile making the experience simple and pleasant. This is a crucial booking engine benefit as it is the first impression meeting planners and guests will get of your hotel, and we all know first impression is the last impression.
A user friendly booking engine will ensure customers have a good perception of your brand.
There are a vast range of Booking Engine Benefits for both the hotel and for customers. In 2022 guests expect that they will be able to book rooms directly without having to call or send an email. It is vital that hotels have a booking engine in place to remain competitive.