Why offering self-service bookings can transform a venue’s fortunes
When it comes to making a booking, be it a dinner reservation, flights, accommodation or even an upcoming wedding or event, the ability to offer customers the flexibility and convenience of on-line “self-service” represents the new five-star standard.
The immediacy of self-service
Whilst traditionally a high-level of “customer service” may have been dependent on the time and care invested into a particular customer by a staff member or team, in today’s fast-paced world, customers can often favour the immediacy of technology over an interpersonal interaction, particularly if it means that they can find information quickly and have the ability to access it at any time of the day or night.
Having recently launched our Online Bookings module as part of our cloud-based venue and event management system, Priava users are already receiving positive feedback from their clients about the ease and efficiency that comes with making a booking online. People who are looking to book venues and facilities for meetings or events require information quickly and by using a self-service system they can check availability and make bookings in their own time without having to wait in a phone queue or for an email response.
Rise in occupancy levels
Many of our clients who have implemented online bookings have not only witnessed more satisfied customers with simpler bookings, but venues themselves have experienced increases in occupancy levels because customers can see when spaces are available and can proceed on confirming a booking without delay.
Aside from streamlining the booking process, self-service systems also free up precious time for busy venue and event professionals who would otherwise be burdened by administrative tasks such as capturing contact information, recording incoming enquiries, checking availability or responding to customer calls and emails.
In turn, these significant timesaving benefits allow venue teams to re-invest their time and energy into providing an even better service for their customers and conducting all-important business development activities.
Identify up-sell opportunities
With the bookings already taken care of, event and venue managers can refocus their attention on the things that matter like working closely with their customers to better understand their needs and identifying additional opportunities to up-sell different items and/or services to increase the yield of bookings. Venue and event managers can also spend more time on proactive business development, attracting more prospective clients and nurturing relationships to ensure repeat business and long-term loyalty.
Integration with Microsoft Bookings
In an effort to further increase efficiency for venue and event managers, Priava is continuing to enhance the functionality available within their own self-service booking system and will also support out-of-the-box integrations with key online bookings applications, beginning with Microsoft Bookings in 2017.
Integration is the key to achieving efficiency and growth for any business and we want to give our customers the flexibility to use our online bookings system, or integrate their existing booking systems with our application to ensure all information is centralised and availability is updated in real-time.
Microsoft Bookings is a natural starting point for us, because their core functionality is comparable to our online booking system as both applications aim to simplify and streamline the process of capturing, confirming and updating bookings.
The introduction of self-service systems is a win/win for venues and their customers alike. By making bookings effortless for both parties, results in rising customer satisfaction levels and increased occupancy, efficiency and revenues for venues.
By Matt Brindle, Head of Account Management at Priava