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Mobile guestroom entry offers a highly customized experience

Mobile guestroom entry offers a highly customized experience
One concern voiced by some hoteliers about mobile key technology is that this will create further distance between the hotel and the guest, who will no longer interact with the hotel so much. However, this is a misconception, as mobility enhances the customer experience.

More and more, entry into hotel rooms by way of the smartphone is being deployed at major chains across the globe. Many of them provide this service to their loyal guests, who can use their NFC- or BLE-based smartphone to open the guestroom door, thus forgoing the need to go through the front desk to check in first.

While convenient, one concern voiced by some hoteliers about this mobile key technology is that this will create further distance between the hotel and the guest, who will no longer interact with the hotel so much. However, this is a misconception, as mobility enhances the customer experience. With digital keys delivered to the guest’s smartphone through the hotel’s loyalty app, the hotel can gather important customer data, for example their favorite food to eat or favorite places to visit, and leverage it to its own advantage.

“If a guest orders Australian red wine at the hotel bar and pays for it with the loyalty app that features a digital wallet, the data can easily be stored, and then an email can be automatically sent to the guest at anytime offering them a complementary bottle of Australia red wine if they book again through the hotel website or loyalty app, rather than an online travel agency (OTA), thus saving the hotel 10 to 30 percent in the OTA commission. Part of this saving is then spent on the bottle of Australian red wine,” said Steve Dunn, CEO of LEAPIN Digital Keys.

Another advantage of this business paradigm is it actually keeps the guest spending their money at the hotel. Knowing the guest has a preference for seafood, for example, the hotel can introduce them to its own seafood restaurant and offer a discount. Upon detecting the customer’s arrival late at night, the hotel can send them a push notification saying the hotel bar’s happy hour is about to begin. Through this engaged, contextualized experience, the hotelier can keep the customer at the hotel and expect an increase in total revenue per available room.

“We want to provide a better, more interactive relationship with the traveler, so that hoteliers can address their guests’ needs better. Our platform also provides a lot more revenue opportunities for hoteliers,” said Ben Robertson, CEO of yikes. “Our digital platform not only helps automate the guest experience, it also provides avenues for the hotel staff to personalize the relationship with their guests.”

Data security should be well-protected

As hotels collect data from customers to provide a friendly, customized experience, they must be aware of cybersecurity threats and make sure that the information is stored in a safe environment, not susceptible to hacks or leaks.

“There have been several examples of where hotels have been hacked into and customer information such as credit card data has been stolen,” said Peter Romanov, Commercial Director of Hospitality and Access Control for EMEIA at Allegion. “As more and more of these devices are sitting on a hotel’s internal network infrastructure, it is important that hoteliers take measure to keep their networks secure by deploying firewalls and network security software.”



Product Adopted:
Hospitality


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