The online booking space is changing fast and a handful of powerful OTAs now dominate the market. Where does this leave hoteliers?
Whilst the wrangling between hoteliers and OTAs continues, the industry is looking at ways to sidestep the high-commission demanded by OTAs. Developments in online consumer trends may benefit the hotel industry and enable them to weaken the power wielded by OTAs.
"OTAs will always have a place in the market, helping to drive new customers to a brand," explained Stephen Dodman, Revenue Director from Macdonald Hotels and Resorts. "Indeed, research highlights that along the research-to-buy cycle, customers will use an OTA site. So by working with OTAs we can position our business front of mind with customers previously unfamiliar with Macdonald Hotels."
"However, once we have engaged a guest, our strategy is to encourage that guest to directly book with us for their next visit."