Sales is the life blood of a hotel business. Any sales process involves a few steps like Prospecting, Calling and Closing the deal. Another part of a sales person’s duty that we insist on is reporting. Making daily reports can take a lot of time and give an appearance of having done a lot of work. If we don’t measure an important metrics to improve sales, we will never be able to systematically improve on our efforts.
All the busy work does not help and the only sales metrics which matter is the conversion.
In a previous post, we spoke about how a guest journey from Look to Book is more like a journey through multiple funnels which leaks. Many people enter the funnel and then drop out due to our system, process, and people.
In order to increase sales, you need to track an important metrics to improve sales: Conversion.
So what is Conversion?
Simply put Conversion is the number of people you can retain to get into the next part of the funnel. You may use any other name for the same process but the math is simple, more people in the next funnel, more end product.
In the above example if for every stage of the guest journey moment, this hotel managed to convert the following percentage to the next level the end result would look like 400 bookings out of 100000 who started the journey. If you segment your guest journey across the spectrum, you may find that the possibility of improving your conversion increase by targeting some tweaks in the process and procedure.
How to use this information.
It may be very tempting to improve everything at once however you don’t have unlimited time and resources and you have a business to run. The best part of breaking the journey into the 4 parts of the funnel is that any change to the process which helps you to improve the conversion to next level will improve the number of people who book.
Here is an illustration of how that happens
Increasing 10% at the Interest Stage[table “3” not found /]
Increasing 10% at Enquiry Stage[table “4” not found /]
Increasing 5% at Book Stage[table “5” not found /]
That means in theory even if you make changes to any one part of the funnel and improve it, you stand to benefit from it in the short run. In the long run, you can continue to make changes to everything under the sun and test the conversion.
So where to begin?
If you look at the 4 parts of the funnel, the first 2 parts are something where you as a business have very less control over. When you advertise, people may choose to ignore you or get distracted before they develop an interest in your business.
The biggest opportunity in the funnel that you can control is when it comes to the enquiry stage. When the phone rings are you able to move the guest over to the next phase which is to book.
By the time the phone rings, the potential guest is what salespeople call hot lead. These guest are aware and interested in your offer. That is why they have called. Getting them to open their wallet is the easiest thing you can do.
However, the task is not easy and involves people- Your team and you need to train them to deliver on the shop floor.
Follow this basic checklist and check if your team is ready to sell.
- Do they know the current promotions?
- Do they have all details about it i.e.: Price, Specialty, USP?
- Do they have the empowerment to take a decision on pricing if challenged?
- Do they have a pleasant tone of voice over the telephone?
- Are they able to suggest alternatives to ensure the sale is not lost?
While we can go ahead and add to this list, but getting answers to these questions will help you get instant result.
Acting busy by doing paperwork will not improve business. We need to look at improving the funnel and getting more people into the next stage of the funnel. You can get the maximum ROI by concentrating on the enquiry part of the funnel and Training your team to educate the guest and close business.
I look forward to reading your thoughts in the comment section below and would appreciate if you could share this with any colleague who is struggling for business so that they may improve their business.
And if you are interested in training your team, do check out our training plans for hotels