Many travellers book for accommodation at a leisure hotel directly through a website or an app. However, what exactly is direct booking and how does the current distribution landscape look like for hoteliers? One would think that given so much industry attention, there will be a uniform process of direct booking considering that it is the most common method of acquiring a hotel room.
When you book directly at a leisure hotel, you either use the website or an app without any third party involved to facilitate transactions. Things however can become complicated within digital direct because there are paid and unpaid components.
By unpaid, it does not mean that the hotel is acquiring guests for free because there are costs like advertising, website design, app development and operational including expenses for building a brand, online marketing and winning booking. Unpaid components in simple terms refer to third party distribution costs.
For the paid component of digital direct booking, hotels usually have a guestbook on their website or app but they are paying another entity to bring web traffic and booking to their site. An example is a leisure hotel that uses traditional meta-search websites like Kayak or Trivago where the consumer clicks before a direct booking is made on the hotel website.
Since there is nothing free in this world, the leisure hotel pays the meta-sites on a cost-per-click basis. This means that if a potential customer clicks on the link, the meta-site earns a commission. However, there is a question whether cost-per-click can be considered as a marketing cost particularly since it is a marketing channel.
There is also another option – cost per acquisition which is comparable to an online travel agency. However, regardless of the type of cost, the booking is still owned by the hotel and a third party has to be paid to facilitate a booking.
You can book directly at the leisure hotel in Bangkok and enjoy some benefits like free airport transfer through a limousine and upgrade to the highest room category. You will also enjoy the height of luxury and convenience because of the perfect combination of style, design and location.