Businesses of all kinds are discovering the many benefits that chatbots have to offer them. One industry in particular that’s especially well-suited for chatbots is the hospitality. Here’s a look at five ways that chatbots are transforming businesses in the hospitality industry.
Chatbot automation simplifies making reservations
Making reservations at a hotel is already pretty easy thanks to the internet. Either visit the business’s site directly or choose any third-party booking site to make your reservation. But some people prefer the experience of talking through a reservation or they have questions that need to be answered before booking. Instead of having to call up the property and tying up a front desk clerk, the person could open up a messaging app on their smartphone and initiate a conversation with that company’s chatbot. The person can ask questions, compare pricing for different days, make a final selection, and make the reservation all with the help of that chatbot who will communicate that booking to the property’s reservations software.
Gain better customer data and behavior analysis
Another advantage of chatbots over front desk clerks are their ability to remember every detail about every customer they help, ever. Chatbots can get a sense of a person’s preferences. Are they typically traveling with pets. Do they require a smoking room or a non-smoking? One larger bed or two smaller ones? This creates a more personalized booking experience as a chatbot can come into the interaction with a pretty good understanding of what the customer wants.
Upgrades like a room with a better view or a multi-room suite complete with jacuzzi tub are where many businesses in the hospitality industry really make their money. But customers are wary of upgrades especially when they can sense the urgency in a reservations specialist’s voice. Live representatives can get a little anxious about upselling when a commission is at stake. Chatbots don’t need a commission and they can offer various upgrades to customers in a less-pushy tone.
Top-of-mind awareness (TOMA)
Top-of-mind awareness (or TOMA) is something that every brand strives for, even if they’re not familiar with the term. TOMA is about being the first company on a person’s mind when you mention the industry that company belongs to. When a customer thinks “hotel,” you want them to think of your brand immediately. Chatbots can help with TOMA because they’re ever present on customers’ favorite messaging platforms and are always just a couple of taps on a smartphone away.
Finally, chatbots are great for the hospitality industry because it’s an industry where customer service is especially crucial. Customers are quick to write a bad review for any business who doesn’t provide excellent service. Need to modify or cancel an existing reservation, a chatbot can walk you through it. Already in the hotel and need something brought to the room, tell the chatbot. This frees up hotel staff to handle only the most challenging situations since chatbots are taking care of everything else and keeping guests happy.