Why pre-check-in and check-out are important for your hotel
We often talk about the guest experience throughout their stay in an establishment, and rightly so, but we neglect to mention the importance of check-in and check-out. However, these two phases represent key stages in building a relationship with the guest, so it must be paid special attention. The first of them constitutes the first impression you give to the guest, while the other has a significant impact on the long-term relationship you build with them.
Pre-check-in: for a personalised experience
Of course, check-in plays a significant role in the guest journey. Guests are likely to go through the research phase on their own when looking for a hotel, and especially when consulting the various review platforms, but they then need to receive special attention so that their stay runs as smoothly as possible. This is, therefore, the perfect opportunity to personalise their experience by providing them with information that’s relevant to their stay. Here’s a list of some of the actions you could implement through a pre-check-in form:
- Collect permission to receive emails, in line with GDPR (this is important with a view to establishing long-term communication)
- Implement a strategy to increase additional sales
- Send a quick check-in form to gather the necessary information
- Answer questions asked frequently by guests
- Showcase the hotel’s services and recommend activities and places of interest in the area
These initiatives can be implemented with ease through effective pre-stay communication. Not only can you showcase your establishment, but you can also anticipate your guests’ needs and any potential problems. This can also save a significant amount of time for those who process the bookings, welcome the guests or deal with housekeeping (if, for example, they know that a particular guest will be expecting an extra bed or pillow). A pre-check-in form also allows you to reduce the waiting time at reception. This effective management of time and resources can only optimise your operations.
The pre-check-in stage is, therefore, a crucial part of your guest relations strategy. By starting the conversation with the guest even before they’ve arrived, you’re showing them that they made the right decision by choosing your hotel. It also gives them greater control over their experience.
Pre-check-out : for optimal guest satisfaction
Check-out is also a key part of the guest experience. If you’ve made the effort to communicate with the guest before and during their stay, continue this in the pre-check-out phase. Think about what other useful information you could give them to make their experience even better. By facilitating the check-out phase through a personalised message sent the night before the guest is due to leave, you can:
- Make additional sales for certain services such as luggage or a takeaway breakfast box
- Arrange for a taxi or shuttle to the airport
- Optimise the management of your team at reception by anticipating departure times
Once again, you’re giving your guests more opportunities and more control, thus making their stay as good as it can be. The examples given above are real issues that could affect certain guests, especially guests who are on business and whose experience is therefore partly based on optimising their time. Anticipating needs and requirements has become the key to a successful experience. If you are available and attentive to your guests’ needs through controlled communication, this will have a positive impact on guest loyalty.
Personalised communication at every stage of the guest journey
As we’ve already shown, from various scenarios, a communication strategy that’s adapted to each stage of the guest journey plays a decisive role in creating a positive experience. This leads to a higher guest satisfaction rate and increased guest loyalty.
You need to set objectives for each interaction you have with your guests. Do you want to gather feedback so you can meet any needs your guests may have, or anticipate a demand? Do you want to increase your additional sales by showcasing your services? It’s crucial to adapt the content of your communication in accordance with your strategy.
The guest experience is created by this level of proximity to the guest. This can be achieved by automating your communication, which offers you multiple opportunities to enhance the experience your guest has before, during and after their stay. Don’t underestimate the impact that you could have during check-in and check-out – maximise your chances of success!
To find out more about the various possibilities for digitising your communication and enhancing the guest experience, especially during these key steps in the guest journey, we invite you to explore our Guest Experience Hub through a personalised demonstration.