What is the meaning / definition of Channels in the hospitality industry?
A term that refers to Distribution Channels and that describes the different methods / platforms buy which / in which bookings for a hotel are made. A Channel can be a hotel’s booking engine, a direct phone reservation or a specific stream of revenue such as a 3rd party website, an OTA, etc.
Keeping track of channels is important in order to maximise marketing and revenue. For example, if you are aware that your main channel of bookings is Voice, you may want to focus on that, giving your reservation agents a specific phone call training, hire additional call centre agents, launch specific campaigns and / or invest in your phone technology.
Diversifying Channels is also important for hotels in order to maximize potential sales. Through diversification hotels can reach a large demographic / clientele. Having multiple channels can be beneficial in low seasons when bookings need to be pushed. At the same time, a key to success is to have the RIGHT Channels and to manage them correctly!
Managing the Channels is commonly known as Channel Management and refers to the employed distribution policy of a hotel. It is an important tool in Revenue Management.