Top US Hotels: 5 Key Drivers of Incredible Customer Experience
Category Analysis – Hotels
Region – USA
In the past decade, the gross hotel booking economy has expanded from $116 billion to $185 billion in the US alone! On the global front, the number of establishments in the hotel industry is expected to reach the mark of 406,059 by 2022, resulting in the CAGR touching 2.34%. Interestingly, within the industry, luxury hotels have emerged as the fastest-growing segment with a CAGR of 3.79%, while Budget Hotels are experiencing a slowdown with a CAGR of 1.54%. This report offers an in-depth analysis of the customer experience in the top US hotels by analyzing the customer conversations.
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The analysis is based on customer reviews and conversations online in the segment. The analysis results presented are completely unbiased and not based on any subjective judgment. The source data used for the analysis are user conversations available publicly online like public forums and social media.
Total number of customer conversations analyze.
Top US Hotels: 5 Key Drivers of Incredible Customer Experience
Executive Summary – Key Takeaways
US Hotel Industry Overview
US Hotel Industry Growth Drivers
1. Growth of the Tourism Industry
This growth is driven by increasing numbers of Chinese tourists. Chinese tourists to the US have been on the rise. A high CAGR of 8.7% was recorded in Chinese visitation to the US between 2014 and 2018. inbound and domestic tourism is also set to increase by 1.8% between 2019 and 2023 and internationally by 2.7% in the same years.
2. Affordable Air Fare
Airlines are a major growth driver for US Hotel Industry. Airfares are dropping considerably due to lower fuel prices and increasing competition. There is a huge growth of low-cost airlines which is accelerating the tourism industry.
3. Mobile Devices and Apps
Hospitality industry is growing like never before due to the easy access of mobile phones and apps. There is a huge rise in the mobile users which has made hotel searches and booking much easier than before. Today there is an app for almost everything and hotel booking apps are not an exception. All these apps have made it easier to get close to their favorite destinations, hotels and restaurants.
5 Key Drivers of Incredible Customer Experience in the Top US Hotels
Leading companies such as The Coca-Cola Company and Barclays, have constantly improved its existing products and focused on providing an exceptional customer experience using consumer analytics. The Coca-Cola Company aligns its corporate strategy of ‘refreshing everyone who is touched by our business’, by gathering consumer insights. It conducts consumer analysis to identify the consumer preferences and expectations.
Similarly, Barclays conducted customer analysis to gather consumer insights thereby enabling to better understand the needs of their target market.
Consumer insights has emerged as an important tool to understand your customers and thereby enhance customer experience. By looking into consumer psychology and the forces behind customer buying behavior, companies can craft new products, marketing campaigns and increase profitability.
Through a detailed analysis of 40,338 traveler and guest conversations, Clootrack has created a list of key drivers of incredible customer experience.
Here are the 5 Key Drivers of Incredible Customer Experience:
1. Buffet Breakfast
According to the consumer insights gather from hotel guests, a large breakfast spread offers exceptional customer experience to your guests’ stay. A survey by Hotels.com indicated that a breakfast buffet is one of the most important hotel amenity that customers look for when booking accommodation.
Hygienic and attractive food stations and a wide variety of food options are crucial for your hospitality business. Customers are expressing a predilection towards visually pleasing presentation and serving of food.
Quite naturally, customers will be put off if they walk into dirty, unmaintained rooms and bathrooms. Customers expect clean and tidy rooms, which is not only restricted to the condition of the room itself but also of the bathroom.
In fact, studies indicate that about 75% of hotel guests judge the cleanliness of the hotel by the condition of the bathroom. Further, 84% of guests examine the bathroom within 15 seconds of entering the room. Hence, cleanliness is of the utmost importance.
Consumer insights gathered from hotel guests point towards, clean, freshly laundered sheets, pillows, and blankets will leave a positive impact on the customers thereby improving the customer experience. Offer regular housekeeping services to ensure stringent cleanliness levels are met. From cutlery to bedding – everything must be in a spic and span condition.
Most customer insights revolve around the service provided to them during their stay. Hence, it is not only important to promise a host of services, but it is also equally important to deliver on the same.
Basic services include online booking of rooms, room details along with images, flexible check-in and check-out timings, and booking assistance. The more services you offer, the higher your customer satisfaction will be. Additional services like free Wi-Fi, laundry, access to a gymnasium, or pick-up and drop-off services can also make your hotel stand out.
4. Staff Behavior
Your staff is the point of contact between your customers and your business. Hence, staff behavior is of the utmost importance to give a memorable customer experience. Customers will expect polite and professional exchanges, so they have a pleasant stay.
As a business owner, you may want to ensure that your staff undergoes basic training with respect to customer handling, while also grooming their soft skills simultaneously.
When a traveler thinks of boarding at a hotel, all they wish to do is show up, check in, and unwind. However, data gathered from consumer analysis suggest that consumers will not be happy if they spend a big chunk of their travel time locating the hotel! This is why the location of your hotel is of extreme importance. For this reason, travelers look for centrally-located hotels, which is well-connected to main attractions, local markets, and eateries. Visitors prefer to have a quiet and comfortable location to experience a memorable stay during their vacation.
Brand equity is an indicator of the company’s strength and performance, specifically in the public markets. In simple terms, brand equity describes brand value.
Brand value is determined by consumer perception, which is a combination of knowledge and experience towards a brand and its products. The perception that a consumer segment holds towards a brand directly results in either positive or negative effects.
Download the detailed report for free to get to know the brand names in the below chart. The detailed report also covers list of features that delight users and several other interesting insights.
Top US Hotels: Emerging Trends
Due to the fact that an increasing number of individuals are choosing to explore foreign locations, hotels are doing what it takes to enhance their experience. Be it adding local experiences or guided tours of the location, hotels are going the extra mile in terms of offering customer satisfaction.
Based on consumer analysis, here are a few emerging trends that can redefine the way hotels conduct business:
1. Choice of eco-friendly hotels
With the general population becoming more environmentally conscious, customer conversations are more focused on sustainable and eco-friendly hotel options. Green hotels have created a niche for themselves by being erected from eco-friendly materials. They also offer features like low-flow water outlets, LED bulb lighting, presence of recycling bins, reusable dishes and utensils, and even making use of locally-sourced ingredients!
2. Use of technology
Technology is ruling our lives, and hotels recognize the importance of technology in attracting prospective guests. Proper use of technology can facilitate self-check-in and check-out using electronic kiosks, online payments, and even online booking, which offers great convenience to the guests.
Consumer analysis suggests that rooms equipped with Internet of Things (IoT) elements like Amazon’s Alexa allows the guests to simply speak out their requests and be served in an instant.
The introduction of technology also improves the efficiency and functioning of your hotel. A number of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) suites are available, that help in managing the internal processes.
3. Use of water-saving technologies
The efficient management of water is the responsibility of the hotel. Guests should be able to avail the services that your hotel offers without negatively impacting the planet, especially its water resources.
Taking consumer insights into consideration, hotels should introduce technologies like low-flow toilets, low-flow showerheads, and aerators on the sinks. Additionally, large-scale water conservation measures can include the recycling of greywater. These steps will also cut down your utility bills by as much as 10%.
4. Gourmet food options
Travelers are stepping out to experience the true culture and cuisines of the destination and surrounding areas. They are looking for unique experiences, and food forms a vital part of this experience.
Food tourism is emerging as a new global trend, and hotels can offer gourmet food options to tickle the palates of their visitors. Remember, guests wish to see a greater variety and fancier food items on their plates.
Customer Beliefs Identified from the Consumer Conversations of US Hotel Guests
A brand must reflect customer beliefs. When it comes to convincing consumers, the secret is to understand the consumer's beliefs and behavior. This will eventually lead you to know what a buyer wants from your business. Customer has a deep understanding of what they want from a product, and this is identified during customer analysis.
What do consumers believe in?
To offer a memorable stay, hotels must know what goes on in the guests’ minds, so they can improve or avoid common errors while enhancing what works in their favor. Consumer insights depict that When it comes to booking a room at a hotel, guests have their own sets of beliefs. This helps them identify which hotel they may select.
Here are some common customer beliefs:
1. Extensive breakfast buffet is a sign of a good hotel
Customer analysis has shown that travelers often believe that an extensive breakfast buffet indicates that they are opting for a good hotel. It reinforces their belief that they are receiving value-for-money services and that the hotel will not be a let down on their expectations.
2. Friendly hotel staff overcomes the other shortcomings
While high-tech hotels are in demand, it is the high-touch hotels that enjoy greater preference. Consumer insights have thrown lights on the need for pleasant human-to-human interaction that will make the guest feel at home and safe at the hotel. The importance of friendly and helpful staff is so great that it overcomes any other shortcomings.
3. Bathroom hygiene is questionable in hotels
The guests are of the belief that hotels will not be able to meet their expectations in terms of offering a hygienic bathroom. Most of the negative reviews for hotels, when collected across platforms, indicate “bathroom” as a primary factor.
Thus consumer analysis reveals a lot about what customers think when they book a hotel. Depending on how well you analyze your customer conversations, you can make a massive benefit to your business by improving the customer experience.
Are you interested to know more about customer experience, consumer insights, customer beliefs, emerging trends, and many other interesting insights into the US hotel industry?
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