As the borders begin to open up within Australia, now is the perfect time to invest some time and effort into optimising your occupancy rate and maximising the income for your property through the all-important holiday season. Whether you are a hotel, motel or vacation rental business, we have 3 top ways to achieve high occupancy rates and stay fully booked this summer.
Before we get into how to improve this all-important metric, let’s start with the basics.
Use this simple occupancy formula to understand how you are currently tracking: divide the number of rooms/properties occupied (for a specific period of time) by the total number of available rooms/properties for that period and multiply by 100 to give you a percentage.
As an example, if you have 10 rooms/properties that you need to fill in a 30 day period, the total number of room nights for that period is 300. If you have 210 nights booked in that 30 days period, your occupancy rate is 210/300 x 100 = 70% occupancy.
Now let’s take a look at some simple but effective tips to improve your occupancy levels.
Marketing your property effectively really will pay dividends when it comes to improving your occupancy rate. The key things to consider are:
You can then go about ensuring you are visible on all the right channels that this audience will be using to search and book accommodation.
Using a PMS (property management system) and channel manager will make this job infinitely easier. A good PMS will enable you to manage all aspects of guest management including reservation management and communicating with your guests as well as all the ‘back office’ tasks like cleaning, housekeeping and maintenance.
A channel manager will enable you to market your property on multiple platforms such as Airbnb, Google Hotels, Stayz and HomeAway. It also enables you to display the real-time availability and price of your property.
Don’t underestimate the power of social media to help increase your occupancy rate. As well as engaging on your own Facebook or Instagram page, you can also consider sharing your website within relevant groups or even social media advertising. Advertising on social media can actually be one of the most cost-effective marketing channels for your property if you get the targeting right.
Use your social channels to showcase not just your property and the amenities but things to do in the area. Highlighting what makes your locale special is half the battle in enticing people to make a booking. You are also potentially setting yourself apart from your competitors by showing that you care about the overall guest experience.
You can also build trust and confidence in prospective bookers by making sure you are responsive to people asking questions or commenting on your posts.
With the opportunity for international travel vastly limited at the moment, there is a great opportunity to form longer-term relationships with travellers in the domestic market. After all, the cost of finding new customers can be 10 times more expensive than retaining existing ones. So once you have won those new guests, keep them coming back!
Make sure you stay in touch with your previous guests by email marketing and social media. For example, you could incentivise return visits with discounts for repeat bookings within 90 days. If you are a larger property, you could even consider creating a loyalty program.
And as highlighted in the last blog: The COVID-19 New Normal: Worry-Free Reservations, look at ways you can reduce the anxiety or resistance to booking in advance by offering more flexibility in your booking process.
At HiRUM we’ve been supporting accommodation owners including hotels, motels and holiday rental properties, for over 20 years. Our industry-leading PMS and Channel Manager make increasing occupancy rates and improving the visibility of your property a breeze. With an Australian-based customer support team that you can actually speak to, we have an outstanding reputation and extensive industry experience.
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