You never get a second chance to make a first impression. And that’s why it’s so important to make your first encounter with your guests’ a lasting one. After a long day of travelling, there is nothing more welcoming for a traveller than walking into a hotel and being greeted by a friendly face.

This personal experience is why a traveller will book a stay at your property in the first place! But what can really set your hotel, bed and breakfast, guesthouse or motel apart from a larger hotel chain is the level of familiarity and personalisation that you provide to a customer from the moment they walk through your doors. As you increase the number of online booking channels you connect to, you will undoubtedly create greater exposure for your hotel globally. This may result in a direct increase in the number of different nationalities visiting your hotel.

Greeting your guests in their native tongue, even if it’s just a simple “hello”, can make a world of difference in gaining travel customer loyalty and leveraging word-of-mouth.

Also, with the popularity and dependence on review sites such as TripAdvisor, positive reviews can help increase your online attention.

In fact, according to Margaret Ady, Director of Marketing at TrustYou, the more reviews that you get for your small hotel, the greater online exposure you will experience. In particular, reviews assist hotels by improving their overall ranking and visibility on search engines such as Google. Therefore, the hotel’s website benefits from improved (Search Engine Optimisation) SEO and increased web traffic [1].

What better way to increase your small hotel’s online profile than with personalised reviews from your international guests that mention how welcoming and accommodating you are!

To help you make a lasting impression, we have put together an international greeting ‘cheat-sheet’. Print it out for easy reference! It will undoubtedly help you to capture the favour of your International guests as they arrive.

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Little touches such as this only take a small amount of time to implement as part of your small property’s customer service, but can really help to make your guests feel more at home.They can drastically improve your chance of securing better online reviews, and will encourage your guests to refer and promote your hotel to their friends.

In an ever-shrinking world its critical to start thinking about other ways you can easily break down some of the language and cultural barriers between you and your guests.Some other great ideas to entice International guests to stay at your hotel is to implement a customisable booking engine that allows them to book a room at your hotel in their own currency and language. Best-of-breed booking engines will have multiple currencies and languages for guests to choose from.

Creating a customised and local booking experience for your small hotel is going to further inspire confidence in your business from an international perspective. Leading booking engines come standard as part of all-in-one booking solutions such as Little Hotelier, which manage rates and availability across all online channels and deliver reservations into an online front desk calendar.

To learn more about the way an internet booking engine can help you with guest engagement from the point of booking, download our free ebook: Successful Online Reservations Management for Small Accommodation Providers.

[1]Ady, Margaret,  Tnooz.

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).