Picture this: A traveler booked a hotel in Philadelphia from an online travel agency (OTA) at a discounted deal. Upon reaching the hotel destination, he is informed that the hotel he booked is actually in New Jersey. The traveler then spends hours trying to get his refund for the wrong hotel booking. Imagine the hassle he had to go through due to inaccurate hotel information.
Do you think the traveler would book again from the same OTA?
This isn’t an uncommon story for travel agencies. Along with dissatisfied customers and bad reviews, such scenarios also impact a travel business’s profits. Inaccurate hotel addresses, duplicate hotel listings, and wrong room types are some of the persistent challenges that travel agencies face time and again. Let’s understand in detail about this challenge and find solutions in the following sections.
Poor Mapping And Its Challenges
The mentioned challenges are an ongoing issue for OTAs, tour operators, or TMCs. The reason behind this is poor mapping. Poor mapping is an error that occurs when OTA aggregates hotel properties from multiple sources, and the properties are incorrectly matched.
Let’s take a scenario of Poor mapping and understand its consequences on your business.
Let’s assume Holidays and Travel is an OTA-sourcing hotel from multiple suppliers, wholesalers, etc. Recently, Holidays and Travel sourced “Hotel Happy Stay, Orlando” from multiple suppliers and mapped the hotel. However, during the mapping technique, the OTA inaccurately mapped “Hotel Happy Stay, Miami” with Hotel Happy Stay of Orlando. This is a case of poor mapping, and the OTA realizes this only after the traveler reaches the destination and experiences the inconvenience.
From the table below the inaccurately mapped hotel is priced at the lowest ($350), making it an ideal choice for the customer during the booking process. Also, there is a possibility that OTA would have had a yield pricing strategy behind this deal with the supplier but due to poor mapping, OTA would have experienced a revenue loss and missed a successful business opportunity.
|Source||Hotel Name||Hotel Price||Status||Mapped ID|
|Supplier 1||Hotel Happy Stay||$400||Mapped||3996|
|Supplier 2||Hotel Happy Stay||$450||Mapped||3996|
|Supplier 3||Hotel Happy Stay||$350||Inaccurately Mapped||3996|
Some Of The Adverse Impacts Of Bad Mapping Are:
1. Poor customer experience
2. Missed sales opportunities
3. Bad brand reputation
4. Reduced profit margin
5. Revenue loss
So how can we bring an end to this customer dissatisfaction and business loss?
Hotel Mapping. Let’s get into the details of hotel mapping and its importance and impact on OTA’s revenue.
What Is Hotel Mapping?
It is a process of aggregating and mapping hotel IDs of the same hotel across different hotel providers so that the mapped IDs match with the OTA’s internal hotel inventory. The hotel mapping process removes duplicate hotel listings and incorrect hotel and room data, ensuring your customers view accurate hotel information at an accurate price.
Hotel mapping tool curates multiple content attributes of a hotel property such as hotel address, hotel name, geocodes, hotel policies, and much more. Automated hotel mapping tools ingest, and interpret massive data sourced from multiple channels and deliver standardized hotel data with maximum coverage and accuracy. It ensures revenue increases by avoiding costly mapping errors and missed booking opportunities. This process ensures that OTA’s website displays accurate hotel information with the right prices that can increase booking volumes, conversion rates, and business profits.
Among the various hotel mapping providers, Vervotech is one of the leading travel technology companies offering mapping solutions powered by AI and machine learning models. Vervotech Hotel Mapping is the fastest mapping tool delivering standardized content with 99.999% accuracy and a coverage of 98%. Along with state-of-art mapping products, Vervotech provides a self-service portal for better visibility and real-time insights into supplier data, hotel data quality, accuracy, and coverage. Plus, if you’re willing to invest in something that helps you compare hotel rates through different hotels in your target location, a hotel rate shopping tool is something you should definitely check out.
Some Of The Advantages Of Leveraging Hotel Mapping Tools Are:
1. Up-to-date and high-quality hotel content
2. Maximum hotel inventory coverage
3. Maximum hotel content accuracy
4. Seamless customer booking experience
5. Zero duplicate hotel properties
6. Better business profits
Next time, if you don’t want to send your customer to a different hotel from the one, they had originally booked, invest in a mapping tool. It will greatly impact customer satisfaction and help you focus on developing a unique pricing strategy that will help you win over your customers, stay competitive and grow your profit margins.