As intricately designed, customer service first structures, hotels are separate worlds unto themselves, built to continuously exceed the expectations of guests with every stay. The world of the modern hotel has grown significantly over the decades. Still, the hospitality industry is positioned to break through more technological thresholds. New advancements are helping hotels become not just mini worlds, but entire universes. Where in the past the hospitality industry always strove to exceed guest expectations, modern technology will enable high precision prediction, adjusting the guest experience on the go to fit demand. Join us on a journey of discovery as we explore the future of hospitality industry evolution.
As rooms are at the heart of the hotel experience, smarter rooms will form the bedrock of an enjoyable customer experience. Smart rooms will be a foundation for digital transformation in hospitality, allowing hotels to deliver better experiences, drive sales, learn more about guests and continuously improve services. The smart room is driven by the internet of things, with devices that give guests control over a wide range of amenities and services. Lights, aircon, media devices, concierges, restaurants and room service can all be controlled through a phone or tablet. Delivering promotional offers and driving sales has never been easier.
It’s easy to see why smart rooms have become a top trend in hospitality: they conform to customer expectations of easy, fast and personalised services. They are also in line with larger hospitality industry trends, such as hyper-personalisation. Achieving a personalised hospitality experience will simply not be possible without smart rooms and the internet of things. Shifting to smart rooms is something no hotel can afford to miss out on.
Artificial Intelligence Driven Experiences
As the hotel industry introduces automation, AI chatbots will become a central part of the hotel experience. Making use of machine learning, these consultants will guide guests and answer questions with real time up to date information, for example:
- Can I stay another night?
- Which bars are open?
- Where can I get a massage?
- Do you have any vegetarian dishes?
These virtual assistants will provide personalized offers for guests based on the data they share with the hotel and their actions within the smart room or hotel app. A famous band is entertaining at your venue? The assistant will notify the guests who are interested in live music. A family is visiting the city for the first time? The assistant will notify them of family friendly venues when they are planning dinner. There is a natural disaster warning for the city? The assistant will immediately provide appropriate safety instructions.
Virtual & Augmented Reality
Hotels around the world are already using virtual and augmented reality applications to explore new ways of keeping guests entertained. Many different types of gamification can be appreciated by customers if used in the right areas of the hotel experience. Guests can enjoy exploring hotel grounds with Pokemon Go like experiences and kids can play AR treasure hunts that match the theme of the hotel. Restaurants can use AR to create theatre around special dishes, providing shareable experiences with viral potential. Hotels can partner with surrounding tour companies to help showcase the different activities in the region through VR. Possibilities are endless, as the technology depends on imagination and creativity.
Branded Mobile Applications
Smart phones are at the heart of our everyday lives, so bringing the hotel brand experience to life with the branded mobile applications is just common sense. The smartphone ties together the technologies present in the modern hotel, from smart rooms to virtual assistants. Phone applications provide unparalleled opportunities for data analysis, personalization and gamification, which will ensure that every guest leaves satisfied. Built in loyalty programs can ensure they will return to the brand again, providing timely personalized offers directly to their pocket.
The Road to Digital Transformation
The road to digital transformation is long, but the benefits of taking it are priceless. Sophisticated technologies can help the hotel industry evolve further and change in ways meaningful to customers. The technologies forming the foundation of the smart hotel transformation does not end with the list provided in this article. There will be many new trends to rock the hospitality industry, brining it toward a brighter future.