Problem-solving is a crucial part of customer satisfaction. We discuss the importance of live feedback and its potential impact in the long-run.
Put yourselves in the shoes of the guest. You’ve just checked in to the hotel after a long day, you take of your shoes and your sweaty clothes, you go into the bathroom to take a warm shower when you realise that there is a towel missing. Frustrating, right? Believe it or not, a simple mishap like this can subconsciously shape your entire stay. You have to get dressed again, take the elevator ten floors down and queue in a crowded reception. Your mood drops and your stay is off to a rocky start.
Today, this problem can be solved in an instance. Many hotels offer live feedback services, such as chats or other messaging apps.There is a towel missing? No problem. Simply send a quick text to the hotel staff and get it delivered in no time. Instead of feeling grumpy about having to solve the problem yourself, you’ll feel grateful for the quick and friendly service provided by the staff, increasing your confidence that you'll be taken care of during your stay. What might seem like a trivial issue can easily influence a guest's entire stay, whether they are aware of it or not.
Getting to the root of the Problem
The first step to solving a problem is to realise that there is one. Often times, hoteliers are surprised when a negative review turns up on OTA. Why? They weren’t aware of that the customer had encountered a problem. It’s common that guests feel it’s too much effort to bring up a problem or that they don’t expect to get it resolved even if they do bring it up, therefore choosing not to notify the hotel about it. This in turn leads to a negative OTA showing up after the guest has checked out, damaging the hotel's reputation.
Offering text messaging and chat services provides another, simplified communication channel for the guest. In the space of just a few seconds, the guest can both communicate the issue and get it resolved. This will also notify the hotel of a problem that may be affecting other guests and give the hotel a chance to prevent this issue from affecting the stay of multiple guests. This in turn allows the hotel to provide their service for a larger audience, likely improving OTA reviews across the board. Getting to the root of the problem before it esacalates is the crucial first step.
Travelers today are used to having everything available at their fingertips. You access your boarding pass through your mobile wallet, receive live updates on the journey and even check in to the hotel before arriving. The importance of immediacy is greater than ever and your guests expect instant communication. According to Brandwatch, more than 50% of consumers expect responses within an hour.
Live chats and communication has a much faster response time than emails, queuing in phone lines or finding a member of staff yourself. Staff members will be notified immediately and can easily reply within seconds, rather than leaving an email in the inbox and not getting back to it until multiple hours later. In this way, hotels can meet the growing expectations from guests who feel higher guest satisfaction.
The Outcome is more Important than you may think
Often we respond to complaints and solve the problem only to have it over with. What we don’t consider is that solving the problem may have a long-lasting effect. By communicating live with your guest, you may have turned a bad stay into a good stay, an unsatisfied guest into a satisfied one. A bad review into a good review. In an industry where reputation and word-of-mouth is of the highest importance, implementing a live chat may put your hotel at the top in the long run.
Whereas negative word-of-mouth may decrease your number of bookings or consumers' purchase intentions, positive word-of-mouth has the opposite effect. By offering live feedback to your guests, it gives them an experience to share online as well as to their family and friends. Solving the problem early, providing outstanding service and improving guest satisfaction will lead to profitability in the long run. Find and solve the problem short-term, reap the benefits long-term.
Make Live Chat a part of your Strategy today
Are you interested in making live chat & feedback a part of your hotel's strategy already today? Loopon's In-Stay product offers an intelligent solution for hotels looking to provide excellent service to their guests. It allows you to find & solve problems, improve reviews on OTAs and expand your revenue opportunities.
Want to read more about live chat? Click here.