Revenue management software is the hottest topic in hotel technology these days. But although everyone is talking about it, not many people have it. A recent Skift report showed that only around 5-10% of hotels are using software and theses are almost exclusively large chains.
So what’s it all about? And what’s the best option for you and your hotel? Well let’s start at the beginning:
Revenue management software is a new thing for most hotels – in fact for most hotels it was not an option before. But times are changing, property management systems are becoming more open, and software can help you to simplify your life, save you time and make more revenue. Dynamic pricing software is now available to even the smallest hotels.
There are a lot of different options for revenue management systems, and there is no such thing as a ‘the best one’. For this reason, this list isn’t organised as a ranking but instead a list of what is available. However, depending on your hotel’s characteristics, we can narrow down the search for you. This article is based on user feedback on many different solutions, and we have made our best efforts to be accurate and unbiased.
By revenue management system, we mean something that recommends prices for you and updates your property management system or channel manager. Rate shoppers that simply show you the prices of competitor hotels, or other analytical tools to help make your decision, are not considered.
To answer the question about which revenue management system is right for you, we need to first understand a bit about your hotel. Here, we’ve divided your hotel into size/revenue brackets. You can then click on the link to go to the appropriate section.
Are you a…
With a large hotel comes large needs. The complexity of your market segments as well as high demand over a number of room types means your needs for revenue-management software are as dynamic as your clientele.
The longest running and most popular revenue management software is IDeaS and they are at the top of their game, the real Rolls Royce of revenue-management. They are perfect for large hotels with many sources of revenue. These systems are clever and always improving, ensuring that your data analysis is as up to date with current market trends as possible.
The drawback? Complex software, complex implementation. Such a smart system requires a revenue manager actually trained in using Ideas. Many hotels won’t accept a candidate that has not used Ideas before. Not only that, but it’s expensive. Paying for both an expensive system and an expensive revenue manager may not be for everyone, but if you have enough revenue it’s worth it.
If you like the sound of Ideas, but want something simpler, we suggest Duetto. Duetto has been going since 2012 and has an excellent niche for the large hotel, non-Ideas market. It offers dynamic room type and market segment pricing.
Atomize and Pace are the relative newcomers here. Both systems are more simple and cost effective options for hotels with big internal data. Pace actually only uses your hotel’s internal data for pricing and ignores competitors – this can only work if you have a lot of rooms. Whilst you may need to have a little background knowledge of revenue-management and dynamic pricing, these software have a reputation of being more user-friendly and agreeable for the slightly less experienced, or technical minded, revenue manager.
As a medium sized hotel you may still have very similar needs to that of a larger business. With a revenue manager on your side, having software in place to aid their decision making process can bring you the best of both worlds. New and new-ish systems such as Duetto, Pace and Atomize offer highly intelligent companions to your in-house revenue manager. Using software such as these allows your revenue manager to have data that is renewed multiple times a day, using an algorithm that is constantly learning and improving it’s analysis.
If you have a lot of group bookings, and are juggling tour companies and trying to include restaurant revenue, you need a more complex and intelligent solution. A good option for hotels with extremely experienced revenue managers who are able to make the most out of the system. If you’re working with a new team and perhaps don’t have the time to dedicate to implementation and training, these systems may be a better option. All 3 however cover multiple sources of revenue and can be adjusted to perfectly fit the needs of your hotel.
With the rise of intelligent software, it is important not to think the role of a revenue manager is made redundant. RoomPriceGenie is a great, and inexpensive, option for revenue managers who want to control the strategy and not be simply told what to do. With a huge amount of transparency on given price suggestions, revenue managers can set up the strategy they want, while RoomPriceGenie crunches the numbers and executes it 7 times a day for them. As new bookings come in (or don’t come in), as competitors change their prices, software like ours crunches thousands of numbers and changes the prices in line with your strategy.
For revenue managers, the consistency of doing the right thing repeatedly means that typically we see an increase in revenue of about 7% even for the best revenue managers. We like to think of it as the ultimate partnership of man and machine.
A hotel consulting company recently told us that we were by far the best option they’d seen for small and medium sized hotels. When we asked who was second they said LodgIQ. With easily shared notation on room rates across your entire team, it’s also a good option for those with expansive staff that need to be kept up to date with the latest changes in pricing and availability.
Other options include RateBoard and BeOnPrice. Both new-ish companies, Rateboard provides a nice looking analytics suite that goes with its price suggestions. It is popular in German regions, where they are based.
If you’re a small hotel, you still want to be able to compete with the larger hotels around you when it comes to competitive pricing. Your needs however, are entirely different. With a restricted budget and fewer internal data points, what you need from your software is quick, easy, well-supported automation. Enter RoomPriceGenie. Using RoomPriceGenie’s software gives you the expertise of a professional revenue manager, without the price point.
We track external data and market variables to give you the best pricing suggestions. Where other providers such as Pace, IDeaS and Duetto require big internal data that, as a small hotel, you simply do not have, RoomPriceGenie can produce equally reliable pricing solutions without the density of information required by larger, more complex software.
Our recent survey of 9 small-to medium sized hotels using RoomPriceGenie showed an average increase in revenue of $309 per room, per month. So with 20 rooms that’s over $6,000 per month. And we charge $6 per room. We can’t promise that you will get the same results, but it is very possible.
You can also be assured that with RoomPriceGenie, you won’t be on this journey alone. Our team are on hand whenever you need them to help guide you through the process. Whether it be integration questions or pricing queeries, they’re there to help. Implementing a revenue-management system can be a daunting task, especially when you don’t have a revenue manager to do it all for you. But with our support team you can be rest assured that your small hotel will receive big attention in helping you compete in this diverse market.
Running a hotel with fewer than 5 rooms means you are not so concerned about the ‘yielding’ aspects of revenue management. If you have 1 room then your price won’t change with occupancy, as you only have one room. Likewise, market segments and spend on the golf course are not all that relevant to your business. None of that is to say, however, that there isn’t a need for revenue-management software in your hotel. Simply put, you need a system that is going to prioritise the same factors you do.
Both PriceLabs and BeyondPricing come highly recommended by those running very small properties as well as airbnb property managers. Similarly to more complex software, they both evaluate market factors around your business. Whether it be the weather, local events or flight patterns, these systems create smart pricing solutions that ensure you are offering your rooms at the best rate possible and therefore increasing your occupancy.
As I am sure you know, room rate and occupancy rate go hand in hand. Charge too much when the area is quiet and you’ll be missing out on occupancy, charge too little when things are busy and you could be missing out on the opportunity to charge a higher rate. In both scenarios your business is losing out on revenue.
Whilst both systems offer similar solutions, those they may appeal to are varied. For example, BeyondPricing offers a more complete service. If you’re looking for software that will cover your credit card transactions, booking management and offer you advanced reports then BeyondPricing is the right choice for you. This system would work well within a tiny hotel that has a good ground knowledge of basic hospitality technology, as well as a little understanding of dynamic pricing. Whilst still aiming to take the hassle out of pricing, BeyondPricing offers a few extras that could really push a property forward, given the right staff.
Alternatively, PriceLabs gives you everything you need to optimise your rates and your occupancy with very little internal input. It’s simple to install with a user-friendly dashboard meaning all your needs can be met simply and efficiently with minimal oversight.
Whether you’re a large chain or a small airbnb manager there is something for everyone when it comes to revenue-management software. Picking the right one is simply a matter of knowing where the complexities of your property lie and how efficiently the software you choose can address them.
Revenue management is at the forefront of growth in the hospitality industry, you don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to make the most of your business. If you’re interested in further research into the world of revenue-management software providers, websites like Capterra, HotelTechReport, and HotelMinder offer in-depth reviews and comparisons of a variety of software available to you.
Scott Dahl, director of masters at Les Roches Global Hospitality shed some light on the things you should be on the lookout for when investing in a revenue management system. Watch the video below to find out what he’s considering when recommending an RMS.
If you would like to know more about revenue-management and all the ways it can help your hotel increase revenue then feel free to contact us to find out more. Our team of experts are always on hand to help you get the best out of your hotel. Make sure you check out our blog for more tips and tricks.
RPG: What do you think about when recommending revenue management systems?