In addition to our team of expert revenue managers, there is another arm of Rooms Online that works hard to ensure our clients online third-party listings are always current and fully optimised. Many of our clients simply don’t have time to audit and update the array of third-party sites they’re listed on, however our superstar operational team Rachel Grey and Mikaela Old are here to save the day!
Talk us through a usual day for the operations team at Rooms Online?
In a perfect world, the typical day for us would consist of the following;
- Check and respond to client emails
- Carry out audits across all online travel agent (OTA) listings as well as rate parity checks. Look for new features released by the OTAs that would either impact or benefit our clients, and then update necessary changes on behalf of our clients.
- Upload property photos to OTA sites
- Create new listings on relevant OTAs – then connect/map to the channel manager to ensure a smooth connection
- Check any updates we’ve made have been made on public sites
- Assist with resolving any technical issues across the OTAs or software systems on behalf of our clients
What are common mistakes you see with online listings?
- Poor quality photos. Because guests shop with their eyes and have a limited attention span with so many choices available to them, it’s vital to invest in good quality imagery to fairly reflect your property online.
- Inconsistency across booking sites. Quite often we find that a property is offering different things on different sites, for example differences in occupancy settings, cancellation policies and general information which can be very confusing for guests and this may result in losing potential business. It’s also really important to ensure room types are clearly labelled and that there are not too many room type options if this can be avoided.
What key tips would you give to anyone wanting to leverage online listings and booking sites?
- Make sure you have decent photos and display your best ones first. We recommend investing in an experienced accommodation photographer instead of using a smart phone. Take more photos than you think you need and then get expert advice on which images to display and in which order.
- Showcase the entire property as well as all room types and facilities offered. Make sure all tags are correct and added to correct room types so that each and every image is clearly labelled and easy for a guest to understand what they’re looking at.
- Invest time to regularly audit your third-party booking sites, update content and check for extranet updates and action anything necessary that might impact how your business is marketed online. The ownus sits with you to do this as a business owner/manager.
What do you most enjoy about your job?
Mikaela – “I really enjoy learning about our different properties all around the country and talking to our clients.”
Rachel – “I find it interesting seeing such a variety of accommodation properties. I really enjoy seeing the difference our work makes and how much the client listings improve from when they first sign up compared with after we’ve audited the listings.”
Rachel Gray, Operations Assistant pictured bottom-left and Mikaela Old, Operations Team Leader pictured bottom-right