Improving hotels’ services, key to compete with AirBnb

The hotel sector has been affected in the last years by the emergence of non-hotel touristic accommodation platforms, lead by AirBnb, that have revolutionised holiday stays’ commercialisation.

In November 2016, an article was already published in the Journal of Revenue & Pricing Management, pointing out that «Airbnb and other similar companies suppose a threat to traditional hotels because they have understood, before hoteliers, how customers’ preferences have changed. And hoteliers, to react to these changes, should redesign their hotels and reinvent how to welcome their guests to give them what they now expect».

The customer that nowadays opts to stay in a hotel has made a conscious choice: he has other options at his fingertips, and the assessment of his experience in the hotel will determine his future decisions, and also the potential clients ones. For this reason, it is particularly important that hotel managers understand their customers’ preferences and satisfaction level in an agile way. Identify services that make customers prefer their hotels to a non-hotel accommodation, usually with no complementary services.

The traditional satisfaction surveys can help in this analysis. Mabrian Travel Intelligence platform goes beyond, proposing a deep semantic analysis of the opinions expressed by the clients in all the different hotel review portals. A complete analysis of perceptions based on Natural Language Processing techniques and Artificial Intelligence taking a sample of thousands of opinions (Big Data) expressed spontaneously by the clients.

With this information, hotel managers can identify and measure their clients’  satisfaction level with their establishments in general, and with the specific services that compose it (cleaning, room, staff, food, etc.). An information that is also segmented by the different origin markets and hotel categories, and can be compared with other competitor establishments.

This information allows to know which areas have covered the clients’ expectations and which others show improvement needs, key for the hotels to focus their efforts and investments at short and medium term.

Taking Rome as an example, one of the main touristic capitals in Europe, the analysis of 784 hotel accommodations and more than 45.000 opinions during 2017, show clear conclusions.

While the overall average assessment of the hotel service is good (67,4 points from 100), significant differences of satisfaction emerge between USA and UK markets, and the Spanish and French. These last ones are the most critic, leaving the hotel satisfaction index (HSi) slightly above 50 points from 100.

Making a concrete focus on the guests’ satisfaction with the different hotel service departments, representative differences can also be observed. For example, Spanish customers show a poor satisfaction level with aspects like the room, food and hotel reception, while the French are the ones that worst value the cleaning and location among the analysed markets. On the other hand, highlights the high satisfaction level shown in general with the staff.

Mabrian platform collects, filters and analyses the opinions generated by customers through different web platforms. It offers measurable and segmented data that allows touristic business managers to make the best decisions, based on objective values.

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