How to make the most of your property’s off-peak periods? (Part 2)
During low season or during the temporary closure of your establishment, some employees are still working to ensure a presence or to get ready for a busier period. Therefore, the question regarding the occupancy rate and profitability occurs. Is it really necessary to keep your employees working despite the fact that they are not working at their full potential?
Front desk and lodging department
The quieter periods is also a great opportunity to review your internal procedures. Whether it is your check in procedures, your internal communication or communication with your customers, these can always be improved. For example, ask yourself the following questions: Are the items or packages correctly setted up to reflect in the correct department? How does it reflect? Do other departments know exactly what to do with this information? Thereby, your property management software becomes your link between all these interdepartmental communications since it holds all the guests’ stay information.
Also, these calm periods could also be a good time to review your tools in order to improve them, to add elements that can help you in your daily tasks or to avoid manual actions. For the front desk or for the entire property, the off-peak season is always an excellent time for the implementation of new processes or new technologies, giving to your staff, time to accept, adapt and get into the habit of using them. Therefore, when the first customers will comeback to your property, your hotel staff will not be caught off guard.
The marketing department of a property is often the busiest department during an off-peak period. It must take several actions during this time but also prepare for the upcoming season. It can start with actions that requires low resources such as updating your website especially with photos, information about your establishment, packages and their components, types of room and services offered, while remaining uniform overall. Thus, a complete review of your website can be an undeniable advantage for the high season.
In addition, your online booking engine must also be up to date, while ensuring that images and descriptions used are similar to those of your website. Optimizing your online presence can go further than simply updating information. The optimization of the online browsing and optimization for conversion purposes are also to be taken into account. The final goal of your website is that the visitor can easily access to your online booking engine and that he ends up making his reservation. It is important that your website is efficient and that buttons, also called “call to action”, are visible and accessible. Furthermore, it would be relevant for you to test or have your website tested by several people in order to know if your browsing path is clear and well perceived by your visitors. Its efficiency can really make a difference, if your visitors can’t find the button to book quickly, then there are only few chances that they make a booking at your property. They will prefer to make their reservations via a distributor site, called online travel agency or to choose your competitor.
As any hotelier, it is difficult to see your establishment empty and without customers. Yet these moments are often beneficial for performing several tasks and will also allow you to improve your future performance, especially when guests will be back and in a large number.