It’s Voucher Season – Don’t miss this critical revenue

Claire Sawier
November 6, 2020
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If your hotel is not selling online vouchers, then right now is the time to start. The market is entering prime voucher season.

The season kicks off with Black Friday and Cyber Monday in November and peaks in December with many hotels generating up to 80% of their total voucher revenue over the Christmas period. And in the current market with extraordinary pent-up demand, there’s never been a bigger opportunity.

Future peak dates include Mothers’ day and Valentine’s day, both of which fall in the first quarter of 2021 so now is the right time to get set up for voucher sales. 

Take advantage of the spike in online shopping trends

The fight for consumer spend has moved decisively online. The pandemic we are living through has clearly accelerated the switch to online and has also led to more people shopping online for the very first time.

Businesses too expect to do more sales online with 80% expecting to purchase more online post-pandemic than they did before the pandemic.

It’s clear that now, more so than ever, people are primed to buy online.

Start generating cash flow for your hotel now!

Vouchers provide essential cash flow even when hotels are still closed to guests. Gift vouchers should be used to sell the full range of products and services offered, from overnight stays to spa services and restaurant visits.

Vouchers –  the gift of flexibility

Vouchers allow people to dream now and stay later, with the flexibility of making a booking only when they are ready to do so. People are clearly eager to travel again once it is safe to do so, and that pent-up demand will likely lead to an explosion of travel, especially local travel. 

Hotel gift vouchers give everyone that special something to look forward to. And with cash vouchers now valid for longer in many countries (5 years in Ireland) it’s a great time to be the recipient of a gift voucher.

10 tips for voucher sales success

1. Top of the list has to be risk reduction. In this climate of uncertainty you really need to reassure your customers and reduce any risk for voucher purchases.

2. Create a dedicated landing page for vouchers. This page will grow organic authority over time. Promote all of your vouchers on this page and entice guests to buy a voucher. Build up a segment of people who are interested in voucher offers by including a sign up form. Here’s a few great voucher landing page examples:

3. Invest advertising budget to promote your vouchers through PPC and retargeting campaigns.

4. Get your targeting right. You must be relevant to the audience you’re targeting, so give it thought. Target the domestic market with relevant packages, target people who have bought vouchers for your hotel in the past and target previous satisfied domestic guests and people you have used your services (spa, restaurant etc.) via a direct newsletter. Target your local community, they want to support local businesses. These people know your hotel and are more likely to purchase vouchers for friends, colleagues or family members. 

5. Social media is key to promoting positive WOM (word of mouth). Push your voucher offers on all of your social platforms, Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin etc. Consider targeted and localised advertising to make sure you are reaching the right people. Think about launching a competition to promote your vouchers: Gift vouchers make a great prize!

6. Avail of psychology tactics to create a sense of urgency, FOMO (fear of missing out) and social proofing.

  • The first 100 customers get a special deal of €X.
  • Special offer on vouchers just for the month of November.
  • X hours or X days to avail of an offer –  (countdown timers work well in creating urgency in buyers).
  • X number of local companies have bought vouchers for their staff for this hotel. 
  • €X value voucher for a cost of €X-20%.
  • Rather than discounting you could instead offer added value. Add in house credit as an incentive. The more they spend the more in house credit they have to spend.

7. Push vouchers for Black Friday and Cyber Monday this November People are already searching for deals so it’s good timing to offer a discount on cash vouchers or additional perks on package vouchers as an additional incentive. 

8. Encourage your customers to get Christmas sorted in one easy transaction. Bookassist’s voucher solution allows customers to purchase several vouchers in a single transaction and each voucher can be sent to a different recipient at the same time. How about suggesting to your corporate clients that they give the gift of a hotel voucher to staff in lieu of a Christmas party and at the same time support their local community? And how about suggesting to your domestic leisure guests that they plan a reunion with family members? They could buy a voucher for each other and then book out a floor for additional safety. 

Be sure to remind your corporate clients of any tax free incentives that may exist to purchase gift vouchers.

9. Be creative in your set up of package vouchers to promote all of your services, rooms, restaurant, spa, club membership etc. Remember you need to be relevant and that means appealing to the domestic market right now. Team up with local businesses to offer a unique experience. Increase the relevance of your offers and share the marketing effort. Everyone wants to support their local community.

10. Finally, you really should embrace vouchers as part of your overall sales and customer loyalty strategy. Reward loyal customers with the gift of a voucher and incentivise potential customers to spend more by incentivising them with a gift to receive a gift voucher for additional hotel credit. A little gift can go a long way! 

Don’t miss this critical revenue opportunity. Start promoting your vouchers today. 

Not yet set up to sell online vouchers? Contact us to find out more.

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