Online travel agencies (OTA) are more and more visible both online and on television. There can be benefits for a hotel in aligning themselves with a chosen OTA, but an over reliance on an OTA can be detrimental to a Hotel’s bottom line.
A hotel needs balance; a reliance on their own booking system allied with an association with an OTA, enables the Hotel to keep a handle on their sales margins.
The reach garnered by online travel agencies is most definitely beneficial to a Hotel, combining this global reach with the Hotel’s own local and national reach will benefits both sides of the relationship.
From a customer or potential guest’s point of view, their first port of call may be an online travel agency, especially if they are travelling abroad. Often, they then visit the Hotel website directly to research further, and book directly.
Hence, a balanced marketing strategy, which would involve both mediums, means that hotels are less reliant on any one medium. Online Travel Agencies generate attention, and it would be foolish for a Hotel not to explore this mutually beneficial relationship, and see how best they can profit from such a relationship.
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