- Two Success Factors Increase GDS/ IDS Reservations Volume.
2. Manage Your Hotel’s Online Presence.
3. International Vacation Hotels – Travel Agent Network. An opportunity to showcase your Hotel.
4. International Vacation Hotels – New Website
5. Travel Agency Commissions
6. Social Media Presence
7. Meet us WTM in London
Two Success Factors Increase GDS/ IDS Reservations Volume.
The Global Distribution Systems (GDS) have long been the main tool for travel agents bookings in the world. Today it is widely believed that over 600, 000 travel agents worldwide access these systems to make bookings on a consistent basis. Once a travel agency on the GDS makes a booking with your Hotel, it is the beginning of a long relationship that may bear tremendous fruit if appropriately nurtured. With more bookings, the travel agency becomes more familiar with your Hotel and its service and amenities. Once such comfort is established, your Hotel becomes a natural first choice for that travel agency for years to come. In addition, the travel agency continues to seek a more direct partnership as afforded by our Travel Agency Network (discussed later in this newsletter). Hence, the GDS (and IDS) is the most sustainable source of repeat bookings for Hotels worldwide, but like any other channel, to maximize bookings, there are certain elements that need to be maintained, serviced and given much thought, else the long term value from the GDS is not harnessed.
Our research across the network shows that the GDS/IDS reservations volume is directly correlated to rate consistency and availability management.
Let us understand these two factors:
(i) Rate Consistency: Maintaining a relatively competitive rate is deemed important to ensure that there were not wide price variances between properties of a similar quality. It is also important that there not be wide price variances between channels of distribution for a given hotel. Certain Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) may execute direct merchant contracts with Hotels and seek lowest rates as compared to long-term channels such as the GDS. Hotels are sometimes tempted to provide lowest rates for short-term reservations gain, thereby affecting their long-term more sustainable travel agency oriented business from GDS and reliable IDS channels. It is important to note that OTA bookings are direct with the guest and last for that guests itinerary with little or no repeatability. If OTA contracts are binding in a substantial manner, we encourage our member Hotels to maintain a rate parity of no more than 2-5% as compared to the GDS/IDS channels €” the long-term, more sustainable travel agency oriented business. We hope our member Hotels will give some thought to such rate parity issues. If you have any concerns, please do not hesitate to discuss this further with your Account Manager at International Vacation Hotels or send an email to Hotel Operations and your Account Manager will get in touch with you.
(ii) Availability: Maintaining close-outs in the extranet system is important so that your property is not sold during the period you are sold out, or your property is being sold during the period you are seeking bookings. Active maintenance of the close-outs helps show real availability.
Our experience has shown that each successful property provides availability for at least 250 days in a given year. This 68. 5% availability is often required to showcase the property to the right channels.
If you have trouble maintaining the closeouts, your Account Manager can help.
Manage Your Hotel’s Online Presence.
Your Hotel website is key to your online presence. Your online presence is key to bookings from guests who have not stayed with you.
As your Internet and digital marketing agency, we help you manage your online presence complete with a state of the art and award winning website, equipped with a proven website booking engine. We then help you launch your social media (Facebook, Twitter) presence and enable you to accept reservations through the social media world. Then comes enhancement of online bookings through driving traffic and presence management. This is where we help you conduct email marketing campaigns, newsletter campaigns, search engine marketing, online media buying such as PPC and PPM, and specific travel agency media.
The key is to start with certain Hospitality Website basics:
(i) Target your Audience by creating a Hotel website design that targets your specific audience of Hotel guests
(ii) Optimize your Hotel website for search engines such as Google and Bing.
(iii) Create search engine optimized content for the Hotel website
(iv) Utilize professional copywriters with several years of experience in writing for the lodging industry to create the titles, keywords, description, body copy for each page.
(v) Install a proven website booking engine on your Hotel website that works, does not go down and provides redundancy.
For one or all of the above do not hesitate to contact your Account Manager at International Vacation Hotels or send an email to Hotel Operations and your Account Manager will get in touch with you.
Social Media Presence.
Social Media is shifting the Internet paradigm, yet again. Hotels that take advantage of this trend are seeing significant benefits in terms of online placement and revenue. As your Internet Marketing Agency, International Vacation Hotels ensures you effectively integrate the utilization of user-generated content and emerging trends to enhance your online presence.
Its no longer enough to have a Facebook and Twitter page. What’s important in Social Media Marketing will be discussed in our forthcoming newsletter.
In the meantime, we welcome you to become part of this paradigm shift — contact your Account Manager at International Vacation Hotels.
Have you seen our newly designed website?
International Vacation Hotels – Travel Agent Network €” An Opportunity to showcase your Hotel.
Through our 18 years in the travel distribution industry, International Vacation Hotels has built an excellent network of hundreds of selected travel agents that have joined our Travel Agent Network (TAN) to gain access to special commissionable rates. The TAN is now host to 100’s of travel agencies that not only seek commissionable rates, but would like to be informed of promotions, specials and new amenities.
It is important to note that a travel agency receives a certain fixed commission on the GDS/IDS. Through our Travel Agent Network, we provide the TAN member with a higher level of commission and service.
Each of our member Hotels can participate in marketing their property to an exclusive network of worldwide Travel Agents through the TAN.
Our next travel agency newsletters is scheduled to go out in December. If you wish for your Hotel to be featured in the TAN Newsletter or simply wish to provide special commissionable rates including specials and promotions, please submit your marketing information no later than November 30th to your Account Manager at International Vacation Hotels or send an email to Hotel Operations and your Account Manager will get in touch with you.
This excellent opportunity to market your Hotel to our Travel Agent Network!
Travel Agency Commissions
On behalf of its member Hotels, International Vacation Hotels makes travel agency commissions for all GDS and IDS reservations booked through the appropriate channels. All agency commissions are paid either when invoiced by the travel agency or if requested by the Hotel partner, immediately upon guest check-out. If you have any concerns with respect to the travel agency commissions, please do not hesitate to contact the Accounting Department of the Agency Desk at firstname.lastname@example.org.