As a small accommodation provider, you often find yourself running around trying to make sure everything to do with your property’s bookings is under control.

The trouble is you’re so busy with paperwork that you’re not sure how to free up your time so you can spend it on more high-value, revenue-generating tasks.

Here are some quick tactics that will cut your admin time in half.

Ask the right questions at time of booking

All too many bed and breakfast owners forget to request check-in times at the time of booking, so you have no clue when your guests will arrive. You then have to try to contact them via email to find out – otherwise you won’t be able to make sure the room is cleaned in time.

Can you easily add fields to your booking form to get this information? If so, you have saved yourself a significant amount of lag time in finding it out. You won’t need to contact your guest at all because you know when to expect them. All that’s left to do is to print out your daily check-in and check-out schedule so you know how to spend your time.

Centralise room inventory

Often, bed and breakfast owners will have separate systems for managing direct online, agent, and direct offline bookings. The problem is you spend a lot of time manually updating your inventory, keying in the same data twice to make sure all systems are up to date. Not only is it time consuming, but it also means that there is an increased risk of double booking your rooms.

Use a pooled inventory model – meaning that all of your rooms are available to all of your channels at once. Your guests can then book rooms that are available in real-time, because there’s one central system that manages all of your inventory.

Whether it’s a direct booking that you input manually, a direct booking that you have received through your website, or an agent booking through a third party website, all of it is managed in one place. For this you will need a hotel reservation system with a channel management functionality, like Little Hotelier.

Structure guest communications

Bed and breakfast owners get so busy at times that the task of engaging with their guests gets pushed to the bottom of their list of priorities. However, keeping in touch with your guests is important, both prior to and after their stay.

When you have a solid structure in place you make each and every guest feel special and it makes you look professional.

For example,

  • You email them immediately after they make a reservation to confirm their booking;
  • You email them a week before their stay to get them excited about your property before they arrive, letting them know what things there are to do in the area; and,
  • You send them an email right after they leave to ask for feedback and a TripAdvisor review.

If you have hotel reservation software, it should allow you to automate these communications so that you only have to set up your template, and it takes care of the rest. Your guests have a consistent experience with you and you don’t have to remind yourself to email them at the right times.

Little Hotelier is an all-in-one reservation system that can automate all of the above for you. If you’re looking to cut down on your admin time so you can spend your time on the things that matter, watch a demo to see how it all works.

By Dean Elphick

Dean is the Senior Content Marketing Specialist of Little Hotelier, the all-in-one software solution purpose-built to make the lives of small accommodation providers easier. Dean has made writing and creating content his passion for the entirety of his professional life, which includes more than six years at Little Hotelier. Through content, Dean aims to provide education, inspiration, assistance, and, ultimately, value for small accommodation businesses looking to improve the way they run their operations (and live their life).