We’re living in an age where nearly everything we need is literally at our fingertips, and it’s what we have come to expect. From online schooling and remote working to grocery purchases and virtual travel, the world turned to the internet and technology for entertainment, communication, and the essentials of daily living during the pandemic, and it looks set to stay that way.
Research shows the tech industry saw ten years of digital innovation in three months with e-commerce increasing by two to five times since the onset of the pandemic. Digital solutions are the future and are revolutionizing the vacation rental landscape. The adoption of modern technology and tech-enabled guest experiences is no longer an option to consider, it is essential to stay relevant and competitive in an increasingly demanding market.
A recent whitepaper, The State of Tech-Enabled Stays from 2021-2023, by Operto Guest Technologies, a leading provider of smart devices and connected technology solutions for the short-term rental industry, confirms the importance of a smart tech stack to increase efficiency, enhance the guest experience, improve profitability and drive success.
Operto surveyed over 200 hospitality providers including boutique hotel owners, serviced aparthotels, professional hosts, property managers, large hotels, and hostel owners, giving us a broad insight into short-term rental technology trends across all sectors of the hospitality industry. Here are some of their key findings:
Automation is a Priority and Expectation: 85.9% of respondents stated that automating their operations and investing in technology was a priority, with 82.4% implementing keyless technology and 34% planning to invest 11-25% more in automated technology systems in the near future. More than half of the respondents stated that keyless technology and contactless check-in were either essential or expected by their guests. Automation is not only a priority, it is now essential and expected!
Replacement of the Traditional Front Desk: The pandemic sent an entire workforce home and changed the way we live forever. Virtual offices, zoom meetings, and remote working became the new norm and the “traditional office” is unlikely to return. We’ve learned to adjust to staff working remotely but the trends show 76% of respondents plan to reduce their staff by at least 25% in the next 12 months, with 24.5% stating they have already replaced front desk staff with technology. As hospitality experts, we all know that guests still love a warm, human welcome during their stay!
Steve Davis, Operto CEO, says
“Technology will be an absolute necessity for any hospitality business looking to stay competitive. The companies that make the switch will ultimately deliver the most memorable and pleasing guest experiences, with joined-up, customer-centric technology that changes with guest behaviors, habit changes, and post-Covid expectations. The travel industry has faced a major crisis over the last 12 months, but many operators have also used this time to re-boot and invest in technology partners that help to deliver exactly what the guest wants.”
Harnessing the Power of Technology
Operto’s research shows that the short-term rental industry is ready to invest in innovative technology solutions, expanding and optimizing their technology stack, or even make a complete switch from fully manual to automated processes. Over 50% of property managers use 4 or more software solutions to effectively run their vacation rental business. Whether you opt for a tech-stack or a one-stop hospitality operating system that integrates with your PMS, the benefits of harnessing the power of technology for your business are endless.
Guest Experience: Your potential guest has more choices than ever before, at their fingertips! Offer your guests not only a warm welcome and inviting place to stay, but a personalized vacation experience where they are in control. Technology enables a seamless and contactless stay! Keyless guest check-in, automated temp control, digital concierge, virtual room service, voice-activated technologies, and a smart home experience are all one step away for your guests.
Day to Day Operations: Implementing the right tech stack not only enhances the guest experience, but it also enables you to streamline your day-to-day operations saving you valuable time and money. Increase occupancy with channel management, optimize your pricing, automate your workflows, manage your cleaning team, monitor noise, and occupancy, automate your guest communications, and set data-driven strategies to market your brand and grow your business.
Choosing a smart technology solution is not easy and will require homework! Hostfully is a back-to-back winner of the VRMB Keystone Award and offer an award-winning solution for vacation rental property managers ready to invest in technology. When asked which technology has the biggest impact on a property management business, Margot Lee Schmorak, CEO and Co-founder at Hostfully had this to say:
“A property management platform sits at the heart of a company’s operations. It centralizes data and creates a foundation for automation and scale. Property managers who are successful have invested in this system, and also invested in connecting it to other services that are critical for their business. The most exciting trend is that vacation rental software does not need to be everything. With a new generation of connection protocols – APIs – software can be more specialized and work seamlessly with other software tools. This gives property managers, whose businesses are specialized, the flexibility to choose the tools that are best for them.”
Are you ready to harness the power of technology and accelerate the growth of your business?