The hospitality industry changes constantly, and these changes happen faster all the time. As the industry grows alongside technical advances, so grows the diversity of consumer needs.
The latest hotel industry trends highlight the need to build effective strategies to respond to that diversity.
Here’s a recap of the top hospitality trends for 2018. If you haven’t implemented these yet, you should:
- Develop a strategy tailored to Millennials
- Millennials are predicted to represent 50% of all travelers within the U.S. by 2025. The lodging industry must cater their strategies around this demographic’s personality traits and habits.
- Millennials like their technology. They are often the earliest adaptors of new technologies. For the hospitality industry, this means quick and easy reservations, check-ins, or even room service made available through the convenience of a mobile app.
- Seamless interactions with hotel services translate to satisfied guests. And happy guests often promote experiences through social media channels.
- Adapt to technological trends
- Since the majority of your visitors own smartphones, hoteliers can safely assume guests are comfortable using mobile apps and websites to explore what you have to offer and book services and amenities.
- AAA Diamond inspection manager John Lubanski noted that a hotel’s quality of connective technology will become the industry standard, and that will factor how the AAA rates properties in the future.
- Hotels must be up-to-date with technology trends.
Here are few ways to enhance the guest experience through current technology:
- Mobile-friendly website
- Since Google’s mobile-first index update, it’s been vital for hoteliers to make their websites mobile friendly.
- Google promotes user-friendly websites by awarding those websites with higher rankings. Also, having a website mobile-friendly promotes customer engagement, which can potentially lead to higher conversions.
- Mobile key technology
- The majority of hotels already utilize mobile check-ins to provide a no-hassle experience for their guests. This not only improves the overall guest experience but allows reception staff to attend to other pressing matters.
- Automation with cloud services
- Automation greatly improves hotel operations and allows for increased bookings, better maintenance of PCI (payment card industry) compliance, and reduced workload.
- With this approach, hotels can run hotel operations through a single dashboard allowing for hoteliers to more efficiently manage reservations, distribute rooms evenly across OTAs (online travel agencies) and boost overall security.
- Provide multilingual services appealing to global cultures
- According to the U.S. Travel Association, international inbound travel is expected to continue to grow at a rate of 2.2 percent annually.
- With this influx of international travel, hotels must serve guests who speak a multitude of languages, and tailor their hotel experience to specific cultures and the unique needs of international guests.
- Social media promotions
- Social media offers an easy way for guests to share their experiences about their recent trips. It also offers a great opportunity for hotels to self-promote. Make an effort to review your presence on platforms such as TripAdvisor, Yelp, Oyster, Instagram, and others.
Some hotels feature guests’ images and tweets on their own websites. Some even launch augmented reality ads and room service with virtual reality goggles where potential guests can visualize spaces in multiple destinations without leaving their computer.
Social media platforms not only help self-promote your brand but serve as tools to encourage user engagement. This inevitably brings more bookings and greater revenue towards hoteliers’ advertising efforts.