hotel revenue management tools

5 Critical Revenue Management Tools Every Hotel Needs

Background: The Hotel Technology Landscape Is Evolving Fast And The Successful Hotels In The Future Will Be The Ones That Take Fully Advantage Of The Tools And Resources Out There.

With so many new players in the market in every single area of the hospitality industry this is becoming quite complicated to differentiate what is necessary and what may be optional. Nowadays hotels owners are looking to invest in platforms that are increasing their productivity, their market shares and revenue. More important general managers and owners are looking to invest ONLY in platforms with a clear Return On Investment (ROI).

Technology is one key element in any hotel structure and leveraged correctly can drive an increase in productivity, stronger revenue, and market share.

At Catala Consulting, we have a unique 8 steps optimization method and one of the early steps is to audit and review the entire technology operations to make sure our hotels are using the most appropriate tech stack that meet their needs.

 To help you prioritize your investments in your hotel technology stack we have put together the top 5 tools that every successful hotelier needs for optimal revenue management.

Hotel Tools And Platforms, You Need To Know

Property Management System (PMS)

Apaleo PMS – the first property management system to run on open platform

The property management system (PMS) is at the heart of the entire hotel operations and needs to be considered your key priority before upgrading any other systems. The PMS manages all aspects of the hotel operations from Front Office (check-in/check-out, room assignment) to Finance and Revenue Management (managing room rates, billing).

While you can check some of the legacy systems out there, newcomers are much more interesting and could help you increase your staff productivity as well as a few other benefits such as:

  • Cost Effective
  • Cloud Solution (accessible, flexible, and efficient)
  • Always up-to-date data, reliable and secure platform
  • User-friendly and easy to use
  • API friendly and hundreds of application to connect via the Marketplace

The PMS used to be a single piece of software and is now evolving into a more integrated solution with other applications. Still playing a vital role in your full hotel technology stack, however this role is now being continuously improved by open APIs, marketplaces, and other technologies.

We recommend you:

  • Mews
  • Apaleo
  • Cloudbeds: Cloudbeds is an award-winning software suite that helps hospitality properties run every aspect of their business. Their cloud-based, integrated solution includes a powerful hotel PMS, a renowned Channel Manager, a commission-free Booking Engine, a payment processor, marketplace and more. 

Channel Manager

Another key element of your hotel technology stack would be the Channel Manager. The channel manager is the system that will allow you to connect and manage your online distribution channels to sell your inventory to various OTA and agents across the globe. If you really think about it this is a very powerful tool to have in your toolbox as this allows you to automatically update your availability and rates across all of your channels almost instantly, so that guests have accurate information no matter where they are booking from.

Main benefits and what to look out for when choosing your Channel Manager:

  • The number of channels you can connect to the CM
  • User-friendly and easy to use
  • Customer support
  • Speed of the information flowing from the CM to the others (PMS, Online channels, …)

We recommend you:

  • Siteminder
Siteminder’s Channel Manager

Revenue Management Software (RMS)

Revenue Management Systems (RMS) are for revenue managers THE most important tool to have to support their revenue strategies and automate the tactics as much as possible.

RMS analyse internal data, market supply and customer demand to calculate the ideal rates for your rooms. This allows you to optimize pricing across your distribution channels from one centralized dashboard. RMS are using different algorithms to base their rate recommendations (such as historical data, real time data, competitor rates and/or demand forecast)

Their use has grown rapidly in recent years. However, we still see 80-90% of hotels yet to adopt any form of RMS. With that in mind, implementing Revenue Management Systems now will put you ahead of the field and give your hotel a substantial competitive advantage. 

If you have missed it, we have recently listed and reviewed the Best Hotel Revenue Management Systems (RMS) for 2021 here.

We recommend you:

Business Intelligence (BI), Data Analytics Platforms & Benchmarking Tools

Business Intelligence (BI) platforms are technologies that allow you to collect, integrate, analyse, and present your hotel information into your own reports, interactive visualization and/or dashboards. These tools have been designed and developed exclusively for analysis in order to access specific insights about your business. BI are nowadays all integrated into your PMS and should be as much automated as possible in order to turn report producers into information/insight consumers. Once again, these tools can help us move from the descriptive revenue management (more reporting/tactical) into the prescriptive revenue management (more strategic).

We recommend you:

If you feel a bit more techy and wants to start building your own reports:

We recommend you to learn more about SQL (data management) and Data Analytics / Data Sciences.

Microsoft Power BI

Upselling Tools

Upselling is one of the best ways to increase your revenue and ADR with the same amount of demand. It can be applied to everything and anything (want a goldfish to keep you company during your stay? Or a room with a sea view and better amenities?). It allows you to make better use of your hotel’s amenities and product.

This also participates in increasing your guest’s satisfaction linked to a more personalized stay. “Effective Front Desk Upselling increases online reputation by 25%” (TSA Solutions, 2014). While we recommend you implement a Front Office upselling program with your team, you can also look at automating the process with digital solutions in order to upsell at time of reservations and integrated with your booking engine and website.

We recommend you:

The End Of The Legacy Systems

This is the end of the systems that you contract and setup for the next 20 years. It is now the time of your technology stack becoming very easy to connect, disconnect and move from one system to another. Be agile in your approach, try different things and applications, continue with what is working for your property and stop what is not. There isn’t “a solution that fits all”. Stay open-minded, look for new players/startups in the market as well as don’t hesitate to look at new products from existing companies.

Building and/or upgrading your entire hotel technology stack is not easy. It takes time and expertise to source the right partners, evaluate the different options based on your business needs, requirements and budget. At Catala Consulting we have a unique 8-step process to help you optimize your Hotel technologies stack and the full Request For Proposal (RFP) process. We provide you with an impartial opinion, tailored to your exact needs. If you would like a personal recommendation or introduction to one of the providers mentioned, please contact us for a free consultation today.

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