Tech-enabled hospitality company OYO (www.oyorooms.com) has launched new revenue management features to help the independent hotel owners it partners with to optimise their performance and capture increased levels of business now their hotels have reopened post-lockdown.
After successful trials at a select number of hotels, these new tools are being rolled out automatically across the full OYO portfolio at no cost to owners. The new tools, outlined below, are additional to OYO’s existing revenue management technology features.
Smart Pricing Manager
OYO’s Smart Pricing Manager, a new feature introduced within the OYO OS owner app, gives partners the power to adjust their room prices instantly upwards or downwards within a specified range. A hotel owner, for example, might increase prices to capitalise on an expected spike following the announcement of a local event or reduce prices to improve occupancy if bad weather is likely to impact immediate business. When coupled with OYO’s dynamic pricing and competitive pricing intelligence engines, this tool can generate higher yields for a hotel whilst maximising the benefit of local knowledge. This feature is free of charge, enabling partners to secure last minute demand as well as securing better conversions from timely local events.
Vipul Patel, the owner of OYO Marina on the Isle of Wight, has already started using the Smart Pricing Manager. He commented “OYO Marina is a seafront property, so our occupancy is often affected by weather patterns. I’ve started using the Smart Pricing tool quite regularly to make quick adjustments to our prices and it’s been really helpful for getting in last minute bookings. It’s definitely a helpful addition to OYO OS.”
Wayne Whitehouse, owner of OYO Pier Hotel Rhyl in North Wales, is another early adopter of the new feature. “Previously, it took some time to change the pricing of my rooms, but now I can do it with just a few clicks on the app which is far more convenient,” he said. “I look at my occupancy projections and local events to help me decide if prices might benefit from being increased or lowered.”
Cancellation Prediction Engine
OYO’s Cancellation Prediction Engine calculates the probability of every customer who has booked at a particular hotel actually turning up to check in, based on the booking characteristics, customer profiles and historical trends of the property. The final output indicates the number of rooms that may end in no-shows or cancellations on a real time basis. This tool operates in sync with OYO’s inventory management system to automatically open rooms based on the predicted numbers of no shows or cancellations. Equally, the engine will close rooms if the risk of overbooking increases, so that no guests need to be shifted to alternative accommodation. This tool is designed to help hotel partners optimise occupancy and avoid last minute empty inventory and is provided as part of the existing technology suite. It is particularly useful in a post-lockdown environment at hotels where customer intention to travel might be most susceptible to change – for instance, at a property close to an airport or an event venue.
Event cancellations and restrictions on inbound overseas travel meant London hotels were particularly affected by cancellations during August. OYO trialled the Cancellation Prediction Engine at hotels in Earl’s Court, Shepherd’s Bush and Finchley and the feature was shown to improve occupancy levels at these properties by between 5% and 19%. Each of the targeted properties achieved occupancy levels above 70% during August – significantly higher than the average occupancy rate of 30.7% reported by hotel data specialist STR for London hotels during August*.
“The current pandemic has created an oversupplied hotel ecosystem owing to the lower-than-usual demand from guests and gradual increase in availability of properties, so it is more important than ever that OYO responds with agility to help our independent hoteliers capture demand and maximise occupancy and RevPar,” commented Rishabh Gupta, head of OYO UK and Europe. “OYO’s revenue management systems are based on data, technology and expertise; and here, we’ve also listened to partner feedback to introduce tools that are not only effective, but also give our partners greater input where they’ve told us they want it.”
Along with proprietary technology, customer management services and brand, revenue management is one of the core capabilities OYO offers when partnering with the independent owners of small and mid-sized hotels. Advanced in-house technology enables OYO to dynamically price its hotels based on local competition and demand patterns, whilst complete content management from OYO ensures properties improve visibility across online booking channels and remain competitive – even in an ever-changing and unpredictable market.
For the full month of August, OYO achieved nationwide occupancy levels of 63.4% across open rooms within its portfolio. During this same period, STR tracked weekly occupancy rates of between 45% and 57% for the UK**. In London, OYO hotels operated at 13% higher than the average RevPar across the capital, again calculated against STR data*. During September, OYO expects to make a minimum of 400 further rooms available as more hotels reopen and new partner hotels are added to the portfolio.
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