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The underappreciated city of Minneapolis served as host for the 2019 edition of HITEC (produced by HFTP) which wrapped up its most recent four-day run on June 20, 2019. In the days and weeks leading up to the event, meeting solicitations and party invites filled my inbox at a growth rate any VC or entrepreneur would envy. As a first-timer to this international hospitality technology behemoth, it became apparent that HITEC actually begins a few weeks prior to when that first request or invitation lands in your over-stuffed inbox.

Time is limited. Once it’s gone, you can’t gain it back. Similarly, once a room goes unsold for a night, it will go unsold forever. There’s no way to recover that loss, because there’s no way to go back in time.
 
Many hotels fight this limitation by trying to sell as many rooms as possible. If all the rooms are completely booked, time no longer becomes a factor. But most don’t have the luxury of being at-capacity every single night. That’s why last-minute booking apps are growing in popularity in the industry, where hotels can make the most of each day. These apps specifically target guests who don’t plan far in advance, seeking accommodations from one week to one minute later.
 
There are several different ways your hotel can benefit from using last-minute booking apps in your business strategy.

IoT is Coming, Jon Snow…
Posted: 05/21/2019

Hospitality is prime for the coming advent of the various devices that make up the Internet of Things. Estimates show the industry now represents 17.5 million rooms worldwide and savvy guests are demanding more personalization and an overall improved guest experience along their connected travel journey and belief is that IoT can bring this to reality. 

The forces driving local search rankings are constantly changing. But recent studies suggest that in 2019, four key factors make up the local search algorithm. 
 
The most significant factor is Google My Business (GMB). If you’re not on it, get on it now.

The robotic revolution in the hospitality industry might seem to have taken a step back. This January, the famously quirky Henn-Na Hotel in Japan fired half of its 243 robot staff. The robotic workforce reportedly irritated guests and frequently broke down.



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Is Your Website Voice Search Optimized?



Okay, Google (Siri, Alexa, Cortana, Bixby, Alice etc.) find me a hotel in…

 
If the 2017 holiday season taught us anything, it’s that consumers are not just eager but ready for voice search engine technologies. They were the season’s hottest trend in gift buying, whether it was smartphones with voice search capabilities or digital virtual assistants like Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Echo and Google Home.
 
Even though the voice search technology is still near its infancy, all major technology companies are investing in the development of voice search and virtual assistants. Nearly half of Americans are now using Intelligent Personal Assistants in one form or another and, by 2020, experts predict that 50 percent of all search inquiries will be made with voice search.
 
If your website is not yet voice search optimized, you need to invest now or risk your site being lost in an Internet no-man’s-land. When it comes to search engine optimization (SEO), and all services that have SEO value like choosing a hotel, you are competing with all other hotel websites to be a site preferred by voice assistants.
 
Step one is hiring a web specialist to get you in the game. Ask them to make sure that your website can handle natural language processing and is adaptable to unique speech patterns, adding new long-tailed conversational keywords and questions to your site that is far more amenable to voice search apps than traditional keywords. Tell them you want each landing page to be voice mobile search friendly and doesn’t block mobile resources like JavaScript and CSS. Finally, ask them to eliminate any web elements that hamper website access via mobile search.
 
The clock on voice search optimization is already ticking. Make sure your hotel will be the one Google, Siri, Alexa, Cortana, Bixby, Alice and all those other friendly digital voices choose when their owners are searching for a great place to stay.

About The Author
Nimesh Dinubhai
President
Websrefresh


Nimesh Dinubhai completed his studies in 2003 and launched Websrefresh to help businesses grow their ROI. He also owns two Arizona hotels, one of which earned the Historical Hotel Award in 2014.

 
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