Technology impacts and assists the growth of practically every industry in the present age. Hotel industry too isn’t insulated from its effects. With local and international hotel establishments working overtime to tap into the power of internet, in order to catalyze their sales and to improve customer relations, it is only evident how internet is playing a key role in development of hotel industry today.Social networking portals like Facebook, Twitter etc. are increasingly playing a dominant role in strategies of hotels all over. User generated feedback’s and reviews on such websites play a huge role in popularizing the services of hotels by word of mouth. Further, it also becomes easier to stay in touch with and maintain relationships with ex-clients by making use of online tools.
Several other types of websites are working round the clock to bring travel related products and services closer to end-user, either by way of making them available on the clients’ desktops or via the exponentially rising number of mobile phone internet users. Many utility portals are springing up nowadays as well, that merely work as aggregates of hotel reviews
, feedback and other data for consumers.
So, how big an impact do you think online bookings have on the hotel industry? Taking Europe as an example, Industry experts are predicting that almost one-third of the travel arrangements in the year 2011 will be via internet, through online hotel affiliates and booking websites like Travelocity, Tripadvisor, Expedia etc. This trend is catching up fast in other parts of the world as well, especially in Asian markets where the hotel and travel industry leaders are technologically up to the mark with the Western world. Online travel companies that were until now only invested in western countries are seeing the potential in growing markets and are shifting focus towards Asia where online travel is yet to enjoy the kind of penetration it has in UK and USA.
Hotel managers everywhere are acknowledging the fact that internet provides a good alternative to take bookings for their establishments. Although many are still skeptical about its capability to increase travel purchases and hotel bookings, many agree that online promotions are a great way to create interest and awareness among guests.
Quite obviously, with all the hoopla surrounding the use of dedicated web sites and advanced software by hotel establishments, one can easily lose sight of the most important and basic purpose solved by internet – easy dissemination of information. All guests can easily access wide variety of data like check-in/check-out timings, rate charts, restaurant details etc. anytime via internet. Potential patrons too can use publicly available information like events, value propositions, room furnishings, missions, special rates etc.
"Role of Technology and Internet in Present Day Hotel Industry",