From Linen Hire to Booking Reservation Systems: Top Tips for Running a Successful Hotel
Know your clientele
Knowing the type of guest that are likely to be staying at your hotel is an important aspect that can allow you to create your website accordingly.
Put yourself in a potential guests shoes, knowing what is high on their list of priorities will help you attract guests that are suited to your hotel.
Obviously, your guests are going to want to know about the facilities at your hotel. Tell them about the best bits, do you have a swimming pool or well kitted out gym you want to show off? Is your hotel known for its close proximity to local amenities and popular tourist spots? Or you might serve an amazing breakfast. These are all things visitors are going to want to know about. The exciting aspects of your hotel you are proud of should feature prominently on your website, to help potential guests to easily understand what is special about your hotel.
They will also want to know what is included in the overall price and what services are paid extras (eg. internet, parking, breakfast etc). Transparency is key to happy and loyal customers.
Hygiene & Cleanliness
This one goes without saying, but cleanliness is one of the most important factors in hotel management. Studies have shown that cleanliness and customer loyalty go hand in hand. A study conducted by Direct365 found that 80% of people would leave a hotel if it didn’t meet their hygiene and cleanliness expectations.
Most customers would put regular room cleaning and fresh bed linens every day high on their list of priorities when staying at a hotel. We would argue that every other day is enough, but this depends entirely on the standard customers come to expect from your hotel. Either way, regular housekeeping and linen services are absolutely crucial to running a good establishment and receiving good customer reviews.
Choose a Reliable Hotel Laundry Supplier
You can’t do one without the other, with a large turnover of guests, you can expect an enormous amount of laundry. Choose a hotel laundry supplier that is able to keep up with your business laundry demands. From bed linen and towels to tablecloths and chef whites, you want to be sure you have a laundry provider you can rely on for a prompt service that fits your schedule.
Ensure You Have Spare Hotel Linen
Whether you do your own laundry in house or have a supplier picking up laundry on a regular basis, it is crucial to ensure that while your hotel bedding and restaurant linen is being washed and returned, you still have enough to manage on throughout that time. Having a reasonable amount of spares as backup is also a good idea to ensure you can still manage in the event of an emergency.
Invest in technology
As the common phrase goes ‘time is money’ and in the hospitality business, this is particularly true.
Many owners of traditional hotel establishments might be reluctant to invest in technology as it can take away from an authentic experience. However there are plenty of options to maintain an authentic experience for your visitors whilst streamlining the more time-consuming admin parts of your business. A key to running a good business is knowing when to embrace change and how it can work well for you.
Hotel booking technology offers ways to save time, reduce booking errors and gives you more insight and control over your prices. Time spent on manually adding bookings and tracking payments can be managed online and offers a more transparent way for you to run you run your business.
The type of booking software you will need can vary depending on your business size and niche, but many companies offer free trials, packages and deals for certain business models that might work for you.
Word of mouth has been a traditionally successful way for businesses to thrive, but the technology age allows businesses to reach much further afield than previously possible.
Being visible on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter allows people to connect with your business and share their experiences online both good and bad - so can be a reason to sharpen up any rough edges. Social media is particularly great if you have a unique or quirky selling point which your guests will want to share with the world.
Regular staff training
It’s likely your business has a certain feel and style to it, and your staff are one of the biggest parts of how your customers view your hotel. Do you want your guests to come away with the impression that your staff are stressed, overworked and rude? Or would you rather people view your business as well run and organised yet still remaining personal and down to earth?
New approaches lead to new opportunities. Staff training enhances the capabilities of your employees and provides them with the skills to do their job better. Training will help staff to feel empowered, knowing that there are opportunities to develop and grow within the business. Training and developing the skill set of your staff is beneficial from a management perspective too, as empowered staff are likely to be motivated to work harder and this may reduce staff turnover.
Regular training is also an opportunity for you to outline the standards you can expect from your staff, and understand any support they may need to achieve this. Understanding what your staff need to do their job well will create a positive working culture which will reflect on your staff’s day to day interactions with customers.
Don’t spread your staff too thin
It can be tempting to save costs by hiring a smaller team than may think you need. However, stressed and overworked staff aren’t going to be able to dazzle your guests with brilliant smiles as you might hope.
If you notice some of your staff appear to be handling more than their fair share of the responsibility, it could be time to retrain other members of the team, or this could be the perfect opportunity for a new member to join and take some of the weight off their shoulders.
A Good Breakfast
I don’t know about you, but whenever I stay in a hotel, one of the things I look forward to most is breakfast. This is one of the factors I believe is most often overlooked when thinking about what makes guests likely to return.
Guests may decide to venture further afield for lunch and dinner, but after waking from a (hopefully) blissful sleep in your accommodation, guests are going to want a delicious meal before they head out for the day.
Whether it’s a buffet, continental, or table service, the most successful hotels offer both hot and cold breakfasts, catered to different dietary requirements.
Free wifi is becoming an option that most hotels now offer and consumers can regard this highly on their list of priorities. One of those features that is taken for granted in the modern age but free wifi may just be the things that swings it between a customer choosing between you and a competitor. Free wifi may also attract business people, whether they stop by for a coffee or conduct a client meeting in your cosy lobby.
Johnsons Stalbridge: The UK’s leading hotel bedding suppliers
We can’t help you with all aspects of your hotel business, but we can ensure that you have enough linen for your hotel’s bedrooms and restaurants. From crisp, fresh bed linen to soft and luxurious towels, we ensure that your restaurant is kept stocked with clean chef whites and gleaming tablecloths to ensure your guests always have a great impression of your business.
Get in contact with us if you have a larger scale or more specific hotel linen request, or would like to discuss our services in more detail, our friendly staff will be happy to help.