Dori Stein, CEO of hotel distribution technology company Fornova, anticipates a year of even faster growth in 2018, and pointed to three trends in distribution that all hotels should pay attention to in the coming year.
1. In a bid to create more value to their hotel partners, OTAs will continue to improve their tools and programs for hoteliers to help enhance placement and boost revenue—especially during low-occupancy periods, according to Stein.
2. Stein adds that the focus on direct bookings will continue, but emphasis will move from cost to ownership and the lifetime value of guests. This trend will make hotels and OTAs rethink how they engage with each other.
3. Bigger hotel brands and companies will use data and intelligence to be vigilant and collaborate more closely with their hotel level revenue and distribution teams to constrain promotions on OTAs, managing distribution more actively to ensure the direct price is always the best available, Stein says.
“With continuing and evolving dynamics between hotels and OTAs, the drive to encourage direct booking and other broad trends dominating industry discussion, we are pleased to share our thinking on the year ahead in distribution—based on our work and data culled from thousands of hotels in every market around the world,” Stein adds. “While it’s clear that it will be another year of rapid change for the industry, we are certain that the most important principle will continue to be the ability to effectively and dynamically manage hotel distribution across both direct and indirect channels.”