WhatsApp is “just a messaging app” and you can’t book a hotel on it. Right?
Wrong! WhatsApp is no longer just a messaging app and is on its way to becoming the official communication channel for many businesses around the world.
In the hospitality industry as well, WhatsApp replaced most of the verbal engagements and provides customers with an easy and hassle-free experience. Here are some of the ways WhatsApp is used in the Hospitality Industry.
5 Ways You Can Use WhatsApp In Hospitality Industry
Until now, booking a hotel required visiting their website, run through a number of pages before finally finding a contact number. Then we make a call to confirm the availability of rooms, their charges and the facilities available. If not for this, you go to a third-party website to book a hotel room and pay a little extra as a service charge to the third party.
With WhatsApp, customers can directly message the hotel authority for inquiries and book their room then and there itself.
This makes the entire process simple and easy for both the customer as well as the hotel authority. You can get instant booking confirmations and location details for the hotel.
One example of a business offering such a service is the Oyo Rooms.
Oyo room sends booking confirmation to their customers via WhatsApp. It also shares the hotel’s location details and how to get there.
2. Check In and check out formalities
With WhatsApp, you can share all necessary documents for easy check-in. This means, you no longer have to carry your important documents with you and risk losing them on your trip.
Easy document verification and check-in formalities through WhatsApp can reduce a lot of manual work for the hotel staff as well.
3. Virtual hotel tour
Did it ever happen to you that you booked a room just because its description sounded good or it said, “room with a view” only to find out later that the view is that of another hotel window!
For many of us, we usually believe the images of hotel rooms that we see on the website while booking a hotel and end up being disappointed when we actually see them for real. With WhatsApp, you can ask for a virtual tour of the hotel and its rooms before you make a booking.
This will ensure you get what you see and enjoy a comfortable stay during your vacation.
4. Sharing itinerary details
WhatsApp makes it so much easier for hotels to share their itinerary details with customers.
Customers can pick their choices and book their hotel rooms then and there itself.
Moving to WhatApp, hotels have minimal dependency on websites and customers can find it more convenient interacting through WhatsApp than otherwise.
5. Reviews and feedback
Reviews and feedback are very important for hotels to improve their customer service. Nee customers usually go through recent customer reviews and feedback to decide if the hotel is good enough for them.
You can use WhatsApp to get customer reviews and feedback at the end of their stay.
Here is an example of Goibibo which used WhatsApp to get customer feedback and build a personal connection with each of its customers.
Advantages of Using WhatsApp in the Hospitality Industry
Here are some of the advantage of using WhatsApp in Hotel communication:
1 . Your customers are already familiar and easily available on the platform. You need not ask them to download any app or visit some website to reach you.
2. WhatsApp providers global reach. With almost 2 billion WhatsApp users worldwide, you can easily reach out to them and build yourself a global client base.
3. WhatsApp provides a free channel for hotels and customers to communicate with each other. They can share audio and video calls, exchange files and documents, even multimedia files with people from any part of the world absolutely free.
4. WhatsApp facilitates instant communication. This can be a major advantage in today’s time as hotel guests are no longer willing to wait. With more and more options available in the market, customers quickly switch to the next option rather than wait for a response.
5. WhatsApp is a secure channel with end-to-end encryption and strict anti-spam policy. This ensures that all your conversations are business details and are completely confidential. In a time where privacy is a major concern, customers would prefer sharing their personal details and travel itinerary on a platform that provides security.
6. WhatsApp being a personal communication platform. Hoteliers can use this platform to establish a strong personal bond with customers and build a strong positive rapport for themselves and their hotel. Personal recommendations from previous customers can help earn more future customers easily.
As we move ahead in the digital age, the hospitality industry too needs to upgrade itself to keep in pace with evolved customer behavior. Considering that social networking platforms form an essential part of our daily lives, WhatsApp checks all the right boxes in being the modern-day communication channel for the hospitality industry. Learn more about WhatsApp API-based SocialEpoch and how its features can make it an indispensable part of your hotel business.