As the Standard methods of doing business – bookings for OTAs, referrals for metasearch – evolve with new technology, the relationship between the two parties continues evolving. With an increasing array of OTAs, hotelier’s are left at a lost for how to reach the widest audience whilst minimizing commissions.
The solution to all above is the metasearch – a pivotal resource that generates more traffic in one place. The line between the Online Agents and the metasearch can appear blurred. Both platforms offers to their clients an extranet environment where hoteliers can upload their available rooms and rates. Prospective guests can compare these rates, images, reviews and decide which one would suit them. However lets take as an example a comparison between the OTAs. As a prospective guests – you should check each website one by one : booking.com, expedia.ie, tripadvisor.co.uk, etc… – this would not be necessary if you decide to search just a meta-site. There are a couple metasearch engines on the market such as trivago, kayak, etc. Meta reduces the distraction of browsing multiple sites and collates all available information, photos, reviews and rates into one place.
If you are a small hotel owner, by using meta search engines, you will reduce your distribution costs and drive revenue. Meta search works as a pay-per-click (PPC) system, which is usually less costly than a percentage-based commission. Combining your real time room availability with promotions empowers customer’s to book a room In your hotel directly from your website. In other words, we could say that it would amplify your online presence.
Metasearch sites create and additional advertising opportunity. Hoteliers can showcase their brand on multiple portals and create an online community with their hotels reviews, photos, ratings. These sites revolve around reviews and this provides hotels with a sense of trust and security. A recent research revealed that guests read between 6 – 12 reviews before they decide to book a hotel.
In order to get the maximum of this tool site – you need to concentrate on the following:
- Real Time pricing and availability
- Weekly/Monthly spends on clicks
- Booking conversation ration and costs
- Building up and monitoring online reviews
Why re-invent the wheel?
Metasearch engines allow small properties to measure themselves against largest hotel chains and brands. You will eventually be able to invest in advertisements with measurable results, getting reservations directly on your website without OTA fees. You will also take advantage of a vast online visibility, increasing your Revenue and reducing your distribution costs at the very same time.