Expedia’s Automatic Rate Matching was just rolled out in some selected markets. Has your hotel(s) been affected?
What is automatic rate matching?
Quoted from the OTA’s (Expedia) email to some of its hotel partners: “We will compare the rates you offer to travelers on Expedia Group with the rates listed for your rooms on other online booking channels. If we find lower rates on another online booking channel, we’ll automatically match the lowest rate we find on Expedia Group sites.“
What does this mean to hotel(s)?
After mega-search engines or Booking.com’s Early Payment Benefit and Booking.basic, hotels are being faced with yet another price equalization system that is even more aggressive. This move by Expedia highlights the fact that the pricing battle is really between OTAs now and out of reach for hotels.
So what can hotels do?
Focus on selling value rather than selling rates. You need to know what your guests care about, that is beyond simply the lowest price. Concentrate on personalization and the guest experience, which in turn will loyalize them. Get them to come back to your hotel because of the way you welcomed them, not for the undercut prices they might have found somewhere through an OTA.
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