With the rise of social media and the integration of mobile technology into every aspect of our daily lives, it’s no surprise travelers are searching for faster, more personalized connections with the brands they prefer.
According to a recent report published by Google, 60% of travelers in the United States would impulsively book a trip if they discovered a good deal on a hotel room or a flight. Knowing that travelers are motivated by their budget to book spontaneous trips, small accommodations providers need to make sure they are ready to anticipate these quick-thinking tourists.
One of the best ways to capitalize on these travelers is to implement chatbots into your business. For starters, you may want to consider a chatbot on Facebook Messenger.
What is a Chatbot?
Chatbots are an automated messaging technology that can be installed on various apps, including Facebook Messenger, and provide those who are reaching out to your brand with an instantaneous response. Bots can be programed to provide specific information, such as your live rates and availability, your cancellation policy, or your contact information.
It’s important to remember that bots are still relative newcomers to the technological world, and some of your guests may not realize they’re speaking with a computer and not a human.
How Should You Prepare Your Brand Prior to Installing a Chatbot?
It’s tempting to just install a chatbot simply because they are the latest and greatest technology that everyone in the travel industry is talking about. However, before you enhance your Messenger app with a chatbot, you will want to take the following steps:
- Increase your presence on social media
Make sure that your Facebook followers are actively engaged with your brand before you start implementing new technology. Post more often, increase the number of videos and photographs you share and interact with those who comment and like your stuff.
- Optimize your website
Make sure your site speeds are quick — everything should load within two seconds. Display your live rates and availability clearly on your website. Verify that you have a responsive website design in place.
How Will a Chatbot Increase Your Direct Bookings?
Once installed, the chatbot will serve as your 24/7 customer service representative on Facebook. This means that anyone in any timezone can get the information they need from you in a way that is convenient for them. As a result, your direct bookings through Facebook and on your website will naturally increase. Chatbots can be a powerful tool in capturing the travelers who are booking great deals at the last minute.
It’s important to recognize that your Chatbot technology should not replace actual human interaction with your guests, but rather supplement the customer service protocol that you have in place. Chatbot technology can be used to provide quick, reliable and accurate information to guests who are looking to book a room as fast as possible.