Hotel Distribution – 500 shades – mostly grey
Shades of grey appear in the form of booking engine providers and PMS companies who are extending the scope of their property-centric systems to encompass the demands of the distribution bandwagon.
Hotel Distribution often creates a confusing technology picture. As solutions proliferate and evolve, opportunities emerge to combine and simplify. From the hotelier’s perspective, the picture should tell a simple story. One in which a carefully constructed revenue management strategy is neatly packaged with appropriate amounts of branding and guest recognition to deliver an endlessly growing line of revenue. In an ideal world, this would happen reliably, with minimal human intervention and for negligible cost.
But in the real world, the story is anything but perfect. The flexibility and expansion of the Internet as a distribution medium created new ways to book travel, the channel manager is of little help for the GDS and no one has any idea what to do about Twitter and Facebook.
Shades of grey appear in the form of booking engine providers and PMS companies who are extending the scope of their property-centric systems to encompass the demands of the distribution bandwagon. There are a wide variety of collaborations, integrations and white-label concoctions and combinations which present a vast range of options to the hotelier with no clear differentiators to help guide decision-making.
This makes the world of revenue management and distribution rather complicated, whether viewed from the property, from a hotel chain head office, or from the distributor’s side of the picture. If we want more shades, we can always add in the differing expectations and needs of owners, operators, franchises and representation companies. The need for simplicity and more clarity drives many hoteliers to ask:
- Can we include both channel management and a CRS in the same picture?
- Is there a way to make the world look simpler, rather than more complicated?
- And could a simpler picture reduce the cost of distribution?
The answer to those three questions is simple: yes, yes and maybe but probably yes. Tying together channel management and CRS applications into a single, coherent solution will address the first two questions in one go. There is more than one way to do it. The preferred option will depend on a variety of factors, such as the commercial model, the level of need and the requirement for centralization of data or simplicity ease of use for the hotel.
Successful integration between previously separate applications and vendors is also becoming more common. This paper examines the background to the 500 shades of complexity and suggests option to the hoteliers equip themselves for more cost-effective and straightforward distributions by combining the strengths of the channel management and CRS.To download the full whitepaper click here
Tim Unwin is EVP Hospitality Solutions for RateGain. In addition to working closely with customers to build and refine enterprise solutions for distribution and market intelligence, Tim also directs the planning and delivery of new products and develops RateGain’s global partnerships with other service providers in the hospitality technology space.