8 hotel online booking trends to watch in 2017/18 and why!

8 online hotel booking trends 2017

Last year, we reflected on the counter-intuitive way of looking at growing clusters of businesses as a way of identifying new trends in the industry in “9 online hotel booking trends to watch in 2016 and why”.

So, what is new this year and what is likely to take over the imagination of bookers online? Equally importantly what are the changes that are likely to impact the industry over the long term?!

1. Trip planning websites on a rocky path but stubborn in its intentions

40 trip planning websites of 2017Trip planning websites address the inherent need of a traveller to “book everything” at one go in one place. Travellers are keen to reduce time spent on travel planning.

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2. The traditional hotel internet booking engine is dying

hotel booking engine is dying

The massive proliferation of interactive technologies like messenger apps, chat bots, robots, cobots supported by machine learning and artificial intelligence is changing the way bookers interact with a product. Could this mean changes in the way one books a hotel?

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3. Big data = Big (better) marketing

the hotel internet booking engine is dying 2017There are more visible signs of big data being utilised more effectively in marketing initiatives – and involves targeting the micro-moments (a google phrase) to maximise conversion.

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4. An explosion in demand for boutique hotel experiences

boutique hotels trend 2017You may well wonder why boutique hotels feature in an online booking trend list. Agreed that it is rather unusual. However, this massive transformation in demand for boutique hotels is having an impact on how hotels and hotel brands are perceived and booked online.

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5. Experiences in virtual reality and 360-degree video before booking

augmented-realityTravel has always been about the experience – and explains the huge amount of time spent on research prior to travel. Until recently, there were limited options to experience tantalising destinations and hotels in great detail. But now, that is all changing!

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6. Business travel is really, finally, truly ready for disruption

business travel planning websitesBusiness travel continues to grow, confuse and excite. Everyone gets excited about the still untapped opportunities in business travel, but it is hard to pin down a great revolution. There are some signs, however, that it is beginning to change faster. Here are some reasons why we think business travel is evolving and why it is time for a real change.

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7. Companies leverage Uberisation to maximise bookings

sharing economy and hotelsThe sharing economy model has made such an impact that it is increasingly being referred to as Uberisation – an alignment of supply and demand in a free internet enabled market. It is important, however, to look beyond Uber and AirBnB and identify the underlying reasons for the success of the shared economy model. And to identify how related areas are evolving.

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8. Blockchain technology to transform loyalty programmes and improve booking margins

block chain technology for hotelsAccording to the Harvard Business Review, “Blockchains ensure integrity and trust between strangers. They make it difficult to cheat”. “In other words, it’s the first native digital medium for value, just as the internet was the first native digital medium for information. And this has big implications for business and the corporation.”

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