When you think of a bed and breakfast, you likely do not think first about computers and software. The world is a quite different place than it was even 20 years ago, though, and setting up an inn takes more than just hard work these days. Customer service, client loyalty, and good employee retention can be harder to achieve in the digital world, and increasingly your customers can find other options at the drop of a hat. Consider these statistics.
CEB research shows that 96% of customers who feel they had to expend great effort with a company over a problem will show no loyalty to the company. Harris Interactive/Rightnow reports that 86% of customers who quit doing business with a company in 2011 did so because of a bad customer experience. And research shows that building loyalty with just 5% more customers nets a business increased profits between 25% and 100% per customer.
In the modern world, bed and breakfast reservation software and other hospitality management software systems are crucial to giving customers the experience they’re looking for. Travelers are typically researching properties and prices 17 times before they make a booking, and 53% of people will use their mobile device to do so. While your price and your location are very important, BandB customers are also heavily influenced by online consumer reviews, the recommendations of friends, good, clear photos, flexible cancellation policies, and the ability to book online. So what can bed and breakfast reservation software or hotel management software systems do to help?
- They can help you engage with social media. The simple truth is that these days you must have a social media presence in order to maximize your brand presence and the number of customers you can reach. Some software systems will help you to connect with the customers that you’re particularly looking for, such as backpackers or honeymooners. A good hospitality management software system can also let you update content on your social profiles regularly and easily, often allowing you to post to several profiles with just one click.
- Bed and breakfast reservation software can save you money. If you are currently paying a commission to online booking services, getting your own software can cut down on these costs and get you more direct bookings. This also let’s you get payment or deposits from guests immediately and send them customized confirmation emails.
- Bed and breakfast reservation software keeps you organized and aware. Unlike people, the right kind of hospitality software is unlikely to make a mistake. No double bookings, no failure to remember that someone canceled, no confusion of one weekend date with another. If you prefer to continue using commissioned online booking services as well as taking reservations directly, good bed and breakfast reservation software will integrate with them to make sure that you are always on top of everything happening in your property. Some will even let you get a birdseye view of your property so that you can see at a glance how full it is and where you have room.
Keeping people happy is key in the hospitality industry, and the right kind of software systems could be just the way to do that. It can improve your interaction with your customers, ease the burden on employees, and lower your own stress levels. Look into what kind of software might help you achieve all you want out of your and breakfast.