It might be challenging to choose the ideal channel manager system for your Hotel or Apartments Group, particularly with the abundance of options that are now accessible online. If you discover that you are having trouble deciding which option is the most suitable for your requirements, you shouldn't worry about it. You're not the only one who feels this way!
1. How much are you prepared to pay for this
Are you a modest bed and breakfast with just six rooms, a medium hostel with fifty beds, or a huge luxury hotel with one hundred rooms?
There are a variety of property profiles, each with its unique requirements, and the price often relies on the degree of sophistication of the channel manager. The more the price you pay, the greater the number of capabilities and opportunities for personalization you will have.
2. The model of pricing
There is a wide variety of price schemes, and there may be also a lot of hidden fees.Is it a set monthly charge, or is it a commission-based price that varies from month to month depending on the number of bookings that are entered into the channel manager system.
• Exist standard charges for the first setup?
• Do you have to pay a fee for each additional channel manager that you wish to connect with, or does the cost remain the same regardless of how many channel managers you want to connect with?
• Do you have to pay for a set amount of time in advance, or may you pay for it every month instead?
• Are you required to participate in the program for a certain amount of time, or are you free to leave at any time you choose?
3. PMS compatibility
Selecting a channel manager that provides a two-way connection and is capable of being synced with a Property Management System comes highly recommended from their end. Because of this, you won't have to manually record reservation data anymore.If you are currently using a PMS, you may begin by inquiring with the vendor of your PMS about the channel managers that are compatible with your PMS.
There are a variety of online travel agencies (OTAs) to which hotels may be connected. Your "channels" are the many online platforms, or websites, where prospective guests may make reservations at your establishment.
• Which online television provider do you want to link your channel manager too?
• Is it possible to link the channel management to the OTAs that you require?
• Do you also offer your rooms via the Global Distribution System (GDS) or through wholesalers?
5. Inventory that is automatically pooled together
Pooled inventory is a tool that enables you to display all of your available rooms simultaneously across all of your channels, including your websites as well as other websites. When a reservation is made, the channel manager is notified and alerts the other distribution channels that the room in question is no longer available. This occurs regardless of whatever website the reservation was made on.
6. Internet booking engine
Connecting your Channel Manager to your Internet Booking Engine is something you should do. It is really simple to put into action. After you have simply cut-and-pasted some HTML code onto one of the pages of your website (or in certain cases, installed a plug-in), the booking button will appear automatically.
• Is it possible to customize the look of this booking button (the colors it uses, the fonts it uses, the size it uses...)?
• Is the button for booking responsive (meaning does it have a design that is optimized for tablets, smartphones, etc.)?
• Does the button for bookings provide all of the capabilities that are necessary for your hotel?
7. Payment methods
Check to see whether the Channel Manager can be linked to any payment system and inquire about how they handle Credit and Debit Card data.
Depending on how familiar you are with computers, it may be best for you to choose a channel manager that has a straightforward interface.
• Is channel management simple to use?
• Is it accessible in your language?
• How much training will be required for the staff?
9. Revenue management
You may now begin educating yourself on revenue management given that you have a centralized rates management system at your disposal. If you engage in tactics for Revenue Management and yielding (dynamic pricing), you will want a channel manager that is equipped with a greater variety of complicated functions.
• Is it possible to adjust rates in the system in a straightforward manner? Or is it possible to import a spreadsheet from Excel, for instance, to change the rates?
• Is it possible to export a current "on-the-book reservations report" into Excel (so that you may analyze the pick-up between the current date and a certain date)?
10. Assistance and assurances
It is of the utmost importance to check that the provider of your Channel Manager provides high-quality help in the form of prompt and efficient problem resolution in the event that any difficulties develop.
• Does the company that provides your channel management have customer service representatives that are accessible twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week?
• Will they charge you for this support service, or is the cost already included in the amount that you pay each month?
• Will they reimburse you for the costs of relocating a guest if you wind up having to do so because of an overbooking that was caused by a problem on their end?
When they talk about the best option, they talk to the Channel Manager that meets all of your unique hotel requirements while staying inside your price range. They would be pleased to help you in evaluating the many distribution channel management
solutions that are available, determining which features you want and which ones you can do without, and selecting the one that provides the optimal solution for your requirements.