RevPAR may be the ultimate hotel marketing metric, but what does it mean & why does it matter?
RevPAR can be found in the below two calculations:
- RevPAR = Rooms Revenue / Rooms available
- RevPAR = Average Daily Rate (ADR) * Occupancy rate
Your ability to grow RevPAR will therefore determine your hotel’s success (other than increasing profit margin, achieved through reducing expenses and commissions).
“But Jack, RevPAR is determined by the season & market – isn’t it?”
Yes and no. It’s true that you don’t need a degree to suggest summer will have a higher RevPAR than winter. However, a much more powerful determiner is what YOU do.
The below 7 strategies are surefire ways to grow your RevPAR, no matter what the market is doing.
1. Nail your digital presence
The reality is that people are scared and impatient in 2021. They strive for reassurance in any booking decision. For your hotel, they want to know that you are a professional establishment where they are guaranteed a great experience.
People get this reassurance from review websites as well as your website. If you have bad reviews and a bad website, you need to be focusing on these first before going ahead with the other 6 strategies.
“What if I go ahead with the other strategies anyway?”
If you go ahead knowing that your website is outdated and reviews sub-par, you can expect to pay 2x/3x/5x/10x for every booking, believe me, it’s not worth it!
2. Soak up demand
Believe it or not, a lot of people want to find your hotel and they are actively searching on OTAs, Meta-search engines and regular search engines. They may not know your name yet but they know their intent (e.g “I want a spa hotel in London”).
If you are not present on search & meta-search engines, your competitors will get the booking, or, you will get the sale via an OTA website, who will keep that all-important customer data and take a juicy commission whilst they are at it. Meta-search, paid search and SEO can all greatly support your hotels’ visibility and for the cost of management, you will save significantly more in OTA commissions.
3. Become the only choice
To become the only choice you need your guests to choose you when they are in the inspiration or research stage of their booking journey. For example, someone sees a post of your well-decorated restaurant on Instagram and with their anniversary coming up, they think ‘maybe I could book this for our anniversary’. Millions of thoughts just like this happen every day and you can influence them. Once people get the idea in their heads, they cut off all other hotels from consideration.
How can you increase peoples awareness of your hotel? It simply boils down to consistently posting beautiful, compelling social media content that shows your hotel in its best light. Combine this with a mind-blowing guest experience and your demand will snowball to new heights.
4. Revenue automation systems
The future is here – you can use automated systems that based on your objectives can adjust your pricing on the fly aiming to maximise your hotel revenue.
This strategy is the most technical but once set up, you can benefit for many years to come. These systems come in many shapes and sizes so, we recommend visiting hotetechreport for a deeper dive.
5. Increase repeat bookings
People pay for security. If someone has visited you before and loved their experience, they will be happy to pay extra to visit you again over your competitor.
How do you get people to come back? You have to encourage them! You cant rely on people to remember how great their experience with you was, especially if others are enticing them with great offers.
The first step to encourage them back is to get their attention. We highly recommend setting up a past guest newsletter where you can offer past guests exclusive deals as well as display professional shots of your hotel to inspire them back.
How does this increase RevPAR? Repeat guests almost always spend more and stay longer with you – the more of these people the better!
6. Develop a very unique selling point
If you can develop a genuinely unique selling point, you will be able to charge a premium as certain people will seek you out and due to less competition, you have more power in what you charge.
USPs come in many shapes and sizes, a simple one for hotels could be your locations and/or facilities – e.g you may be the only hotel with a view of a certain landmark in your city. These sort of USPs help but they won’t rocket up your RevPAR.
Alternatively, you could have a very bold USP, that makes you stand out from the rest not just in your city but in the world. For example, the Michelberger in Berlin is unique as its walls are covered in books, while the Georgian House in London has the ‘Wizard Experience’ for fans of Harry Potter – both of these make the hotels highly sought after for specific people, driving up RevPAR.
If you have done all of the above, you are now the only choice for your potential guests, your direct bookings are through the roof and your efforts are continuing to snowball your RevPAR up. Want to keep the success going?
The final step is to shift your perspective – that is that you don’t sell hotel rooms, you sell an experience.
For example, is your hotel selling romance? What could improve that experience? How about rose petals? Champagne? Chocolate? Spa Pass? the list goes on..
To do this, you can use your pre-check-in email or, an app that allows you to sell these experiences. There is heavy upfront work involved in this but the results are worth the effort. Once all set up, you can consistently turn a £100 room booking into £140+ booking!
Nothing in life comes easy but if you put in the hard graft over the next 6 – 12 months, you can get some serious momentum in increasing your hotels’ demand that will only snowball as you keep going, then one day, you will be able to look at your average RevPAR which is 250% what it was and say “yeah, the hard work was worth it”
I really hope you enjoyed this blog post, if there is anything I can do to help, please get in touch here (if I can’t help, I’ll find someone who can!)