2016 was the year of the chatbot, and experts and marketeers are confident that 2017 is going to be another interesting year. Before going deeper into chatbot usage for the hospitality industry, let me explain briefly what a chatbot is.
A chatbot is an automated messaging service, consisting in a computer program, aimed to generate a conversation with human users. They interact with the service through popular messaging applications like Facebook Messenger or WeChat.
Which companies are already using the chatbot technology? One great example is Uber: the popular transportation delivery company provides an helpful bot through which clients can choose the transportation tab on Messenger and tap the car to request a ride.
Regarding the hotel industry, big chains like Hyatt or Starwood have recently implemented chatbots as a new customer channel service. Even giant online travel aggregators like Expedia, Skyscanner and Booking.com have implemented the chatbot technology to assist their clients.
So, why should hotels use chatbots to make their business grow?
First of all, a chatbot will increase and improve the communication with guests and guest engagement before, during and after their stay. Indeed, as an instant messaging app, chatbots can represent a new reservation channel, which will allow clients to easily find and book their stay via a chat interface.
Chatbots will help hotels to build a proper and accurate guest profiling, allowing them to provide personalized offers to their guests, which will increase guest loyalty and boost the hotel RevPAR.
Last but not least, since chatbots are a 24/7 service, it will reduce reception workload, giving guests instant and helpful answers in any moment of their stay.
Chatbots represent an innovative frontier in customer experience, a new type of digitalized communication. Stay tuned, the best of this technology is yet to come!
By Francesco Adile
Francesco Adile is the Marketing Manager at Guidewiser, which is a Brussels based company which develops chatbot solutions for hotels and short term rentals, based on their team’s experience in IT and travel industry. Guidewiser build their solutions with an innovative and professional approach in their head and with passion and love in their heart. They have developed a cross platform messenger based guest assistant which helps hotels and short-term rentals provide better travel experience to their guests.