When staying at a hotel, guests want to feel safe and receive a comfortable, streamlined guest experience — more so now than ever before.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced hotels to dramatically evolve their operations in a short space of time to account for changing safety guidelines and guest needs.
Putting guests first and creating an experience that made them feel secure — but was still enjoyable — was a critical component for many hotels in weathering the pandemic storm.
Also, many guests found that they actually preferred these new ways of interacting with hotels thanks to helpful technologies.
Even before COVID-19 struck, hotels were tapping into ways they could communicate with their guests before, during, and after their stays, and they were turning to tech solutions to help them do this.
As technology and smartphones take precedent in people’s lives, it’s a no-brainer that hotels are looking for ways to incorporate them into the guest experience. And, one of the most successful ways they can do this is by integrating mobile check-in.
According to one study, 90% of millennials surveyed said they would be very interested in checking in at a hotel with their mobile device to skip long check-in queues in hotel lobbies.
This makes perfect sense — especially today with social distancing guidelines that limit how many people can be in a place at once.
Convenience and ease were at the top of travelers’ lists before the pandemic, and now this desire is even stronger.
Luckily for hotels, there are plenty of benefits to offering guests a mobile check-in through a web-based application.
In fact, there are multiple reasons why hotels are actively choosing to implement this solution and their guests are loving it.
Here are some of those reasons.
We’re living in a “now, now, now” culture, where guests don’t have time to wait around or face delays checking in. They want the check-in process to be as smooth as possible so they can get on with their trip.
In fact, in research by Forrester, guests wholeheartedly prefer mobile self-service technology and actually expect hotels to implement smarter and more efficient operations. And a recent Oracle and Skift study, found that 73 percent of travelers are more likely to stay in a hotel that offers self-service technology to minimize staff and other guest contact.
Additionally, a study from Cornell Hospitality found that US guests get “anxious” after waiting three minutes at check-in, and guest satisfaction scores drop by 50 percent after only five minutes of waiting.
Clearly, this is one of the most pressing needs of guests right now, and hotels that are able to integrate tech like mobile check-in are swiftly gaining a competitive edge.
Think about the traditional check-in process:
When a guest arrives at a hotel, they have to queue up in the lobby to check-in. This would involve filling out documents and forms, verifying their ID, and presenting their credit card for any additional fees to be taken.
Reception staff would spend a significant amount of time checking in each and every guest, taking up precious time that could be spent improving the guest experience in other ways.
Mobile check-in makes it easier on both sides.
Now, instead of queuing in the lobby and waiting their turn, guests can essentially jump the queue by checking in via a link on their phone before they even arrive. Once they turn up, they simply have to collect their room key. Or if the mobile check-in solution is integrated with mobile key technology, they can skip the front desk entirely!
With time freed up not having to check-in every guest as they arrive, hotel staff can focus on the hospitality, rather than the administrative, components of check-in.
Canary Technologies’ mobile check-in solution lets hotels send check-in links ahead of time to ensure guests don’t have to queue. After the guest clicks the link, they are asked to enter their name and address, scan their ID, and add their payment information.
This also reduces the amount of time guests have to gather together in communal spaces, which helps limit the spread of COVID-19 at a property.
As well as adhering to new health and safety guidelines, hotels also have to contend with the fact that consumers today are wildly protective of their data. Numerous company hacks over the past few years have made guests wary of digitally handing over their details.
However, mobile check-ins are safe and secure. They use advanced technology to check guests' ID photos and match them up to their names to provide quick and safe verification.
It also reduces the chance of human error.
Let guests know what information you need and what you need it for, and only ask them for what’s necessary. This will not only give them peace of mind, but it will make the check-in process easier at the same time.
Directing guests to a web-based application to check-in opens up a whole host of other opportunities for hotels.
Not only can mobile check-in speed up the check-in process and relieve reception staff of a ton of duties, but it can also double up as a casual marketing tool to help guests learn more about the hotel.
Once guests have checked-in through a Canary Technologies web-based link, hotels can direct them to purchase upsells additional amenities. This essentially creates an eCommerce hub for hotels where they can promote activities and upsell products and services to guests.
Hotels can upsell almost anything from luxury pillows and buffet breakfasts to parking and pet fees — and all within a seamless guest experience.
Mobile check-in also enables hotels to capture customer data that helps grow their email lists. This information can be used in the future to share exclusive offers and bring guests back to the property again and again.
Mobile check-in means guests can check-in before they even arrive at the hotel. While we’ve discussed the benefits of this in light of the changes to consumer behavior due to COVID-19, it also means hotels can get important information ahead of time, such as an ETA or the number of guests arriving.
Traditional check-in requires reception staff to wait on guests who might arrive late or not at all. With mobile check-in, staff can get a more accurate view of the real-time guest count and respond accordingly.
Additionally, most guests appreciate the ability to interact with a hotel before they arrive. Doing so allows them to take more control of their overall guest experience and lays the groundwork for a great relationship with a property.
Once a guest has checked-in via their mobile device — whether it’s while they’re on the plane, before they leave their home, or while on the road - the hotel can instantly start nurturing that relationship. So, by the time the guest arrives, they already feel special and catered to.
Guest behavior and needs are rapidly changing. But just because people are less inclined to want to swing by the front desk, doesn't mean they want an any less personalized in-stay experience. Mobile check-in allows guests to have positive interactions with hotel staff even if they don’t see them in person, which is important in keeping guest satisfaction scores as high as possible.
Allowing guests to check-in before they arrive onsite kicks things off on the right foot. The guest feels special and connected to the hotel without even having stepped foot through the doors, while the hotel learns important things about the guest that can improve their stay. This fact-finding process might include a hotel asking for information about the activities a guest is interested in and providing them with a recommended itinerary catered to their specific wants and needs.
This information can also give hotels insight into the kinds of guests that stay with them. Collecting such data over a period of time helps hotels understand the interests of target guests and the kinds of information they like to get from a property. Hotels can then use this information to improve their service and create an experience that future guests will love.
Creating an enjoyable and streamlined experience also increases the the likelihood that guests will provide positive reviews on TripAdvisor, Google and other review sites. The more positive reviews a property has, the better the odds that its rooms will remain full.
Canary Technologies’ mobile check-in solution lets you seamlessly check-in guests without exchanging credit cards, IDs, or registration forms. The technology is entirely web-based, so their are no special apps required, and automatically applies fraud detection checks to every check-in to prevent chargebacks and fraud. In fact, Canary's mobile check-in solution has been shown to reduce chargeback by 75-90%.
And deployment is a breeze. You can get up and running in just 10 minutes and start checking in guests right away.
First, Canary automatically sends check-in links via email and text message to all guests that are due to arrive.
Guests then submit their credit card information, upload their ID, and sign the hotel’s registration card all in one place.
Canary verifies the information and enables the hotel to check the guest in.
Mobile Check-In is easy with Canary Technologies. It’s quick to set up and lets you check guests in securely right away — no training needed! And a range of comprehensive integrations with property management systems, payment providers, mobile key solutions and more ensures it ties in seamlessly with your existing tech stack.
Last Updated Aug. 31, 2022.
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