How Is Digitization Changing The Face Of The Hospitality Industry?

Around 91% of businesses are taking part in some form of digital initiative, with 87% of business leaders reporting that digitization is a priority. Ubiquitous connectivity, the rise in demand for contactless services, and new opportunities for market growth have all led the hospitality industry to make major digital transformations in an attempt to respond to market pressure. What steps are savvy hotels and restaurants taking to set new standards for optimal customer experience?

Contactless Booking And Payments

Booking.com reports that around 20% of customers will not make a booking if their payment preference is not offered. Top hotels are connecting with tech-savvy generations through the use of e-wallets that enable customers to carry out a host of transactions without having to re-enter their details. Contactless payments, meanwhile, enable consumers to connect their credit or debit card to their smartphone and process transactions by simply tapping their screen. This solution enhances the customer experience, in that it is hygienic and speedy.

AI-Powered Loyalty Programs

Contactless payments and payment apps are closely linked to loyalty programs: every time a customer makes such a payment, their transaction can garner them points that go towards discounted rates, special services, and the like. Cutting-edge hotels are also leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) to boost loyalty, with this technology being used to analyze guest data with a view to identifying guests’ preferences for rewards and loyalty programs. AI can be used to determine aspects such as what type of cuisine clients prefer, what tours they like to take, and what type of personalized services they favor.

Order And Pay Systems For Restaurants

Hotels with restaurants are using order and pay systems to boost spending. Just a few top apps that have shown an exceptional surge in sales after their launch include those launched by Wetherspoons, Chili’s, and Lea French Street Foods. Hotels can take their cue from these fast food stalwarts, giving users greater control and making any dish they desire available with just a couple of clicks. Hotel restaurants can entice guests to dine in instead of out, with features such as attractive pictures of dishes, targeted upselling of side dishes and beverages, and menu engineering (aimed at encouraging customers to buy more items).

Biometric Identification

Biometrics enables guests to obtain room access via fingerprint or facial scanning exclusively. It eliminates the need for key card management and improves the customer experience by removing the inconveniences that arise when a key is lost. The use of biometrics goes further, though. Biometric data can help hotel staff immediately access all relevant information about a guest – including their food, beverage, and table preferences. It can also alert staff of any special dietary needs that guests may have.

Digitization is key to survival in a wide array of industries. The hospitality sector has long been embracing digital and online-based systems which improve customer service and efficiency. Just a few trends taking over the sector include contactless booking and payments, AI-powered loyalty programs, order and pay systems, and biometrics. Together, they enable customers to receive more personalized service, and they allow marketing teams to target products and services more efficiently at customers.

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