The Quick, Essential Guide to Running a Hotel

Running your own hotel is a large responsibility, and whether you’re setting up a hotel or you’re already in the business but trying to stay on track, then you may be looking for a few tips. With a few pointers, you will be in a much better position to get started and welcome customers to your area in comfort and style.

Make a Plan & Prioritise

  • Know your target market

As with any business, it’s vital you understand which customers you’re trying to attract. There’s more to this than understanding typicalage demographics and income brackets, although these factors do play an important part.

It’s also important to divide your target audience up based on shared characteristics, and this concept is known as hotel target market segmentation. This means knowing what attracts your audience to your locations and what types of amenities are a priority to them (eg: are they likely to be on the move a lot, staying for a long stint and thereforefavour having a washing machine, or is this a luxury facility with beautiful views from the balcony, for which they might value a jacuzzi?).It means knowing what type of traveller they typically are (eg: are they more likely to be a single tourist, a family or a business traveller?)

Google Analytics, CRM data and online reviews (either your own or those of your competitors) can all give you a picture of your target market.

  • Make the most of your location

The location of your hotel is usually going to be the first and foremost reason that your customers are choosing to stay there.

If your hotel’s main clientele are tourists,you can expect them to have researched how close your hotel is to the area’s main attractions. You will want to stay ahead of the competition by making sure your website establishes you as an expert in these attractions, providing dedicated landing pages for each that outline how to get there from the hotel and how long to spend in each place.

  • Focus on communication

As with any B2C enterprise, communication is all. Have systems in place to ensure that all positive and negative comments made online receive a speedy responseand ensure these are always professional and polite.

A live chat option is a great way to engage with guests and ensure they can ask any questions while they are weighing you up against your competitors. It’s also handy for them to be able to use throughout their stay with you.

Excellent communication determines your reputation as a business, and reputation increases your revenue and your value as a business. In fact, the World Economic Forum estimates that 25% of a company’s market value is directly tied to reputation.

Consider the Costs

If you’re still in the process of setting up your hotel, you need a basic picture of what costs you need to account for.

  • Start-up costs

Firstly, you will need to consider the start-up costs for your hotel. These include the cost of purchasing the property, the cost of decorating and furnishing it, the cost of kitchen and bar equipment, and consultancy fees for your legal and accountancy costs.

  • Running Costs

When you’re up and running, there will be further costs for you to consider. The main ones are the costs of employing staff, any rent you might be paying if you don’t own the property, utility bills, maintenance bills for the exterior and interior of the property, security costs, and insurance.

Getting insured with a strong hotel insurance policy is essential to ensure you adequately prepare for any accidents or emergency situations that could be costly to cover on your own.

If you have a pricing strategy in mind and a rough idea of how many customers, you’re likely to attract per month (and this will depend on seasonality), subtract the costs of running your hotel to estimate the total revenue you might expect to make.

  • Occupancy Rate

One other thing you will want to stay on top of is your occupancy rate. This refers to the percentage of occupied rooms in your property at any given time. You can work this out by dividing the total number of occupied rooms by the total number of rooms available and multiplying it by 100.

For a hotel, the occupancy rate is one of the hallmarks of success.There are various tricks for boosting your occupancy rate. One strategy is to apply a minimum length of stay allowance whenever you are expecting a period of high demand following a period of low demand. By prioritising long-stay visits, you have a higher chance of filling those rooms for part of your low period too.

Once you’re armed with the financial knowledge and the know-how regarding how to make your ideal hotel guests comfortable and happy, you will be in a strong position to advance in the hotel industry!

Zaman Lashari
Zaman Lashari
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