February 11, 2021 · Stuart Butler

Fuel Hotel Marketing Podcast: Episode 176 – Is 2021 The Year Of The Mobile App?

At Fuel, we know a thing or two about mobile apps. Our Fuel Mobile App and Digital KEy software has been deployed to dozens of hotels for more than five years and we’ve been selling the system like hotcakes since COVID hit. During that time, we’ve learned quite a bit about the features that guests want and the tactics that help drive more revenue to the properties. In this episode, we discuss some of the must-have functionalities that you need to consider as you look to recover in 2021.

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Visit fueltravel.com/blog/five-reasons-you-can-expect-hotel-apps-to-be-required-in-2021/ for the full article on why 2021 is the year your hotel should adopt a mobile app.

1. Improved Guest Relations

Hotel owners and operators know that when you have happy guests, they tend to come back to see you more often.  Any amenity, marketing effort, or technology should work to serve that goal.

  1. A Personalized Experience
  2. Touch-Free Convenience
  3. Easy One-to-One Communication


2. Drive More Incremental Revenue

A savvy hotelier knows that the hotel room is not the only purchase a guest makes, it’s the “first” purchase a guest will make.  Leading the guest down a multiple-conversion path before, during, and after their stay will drive incremental revenue that will help you realize your largest possible RevPAR.

  1. Pre Arrival Upgrades
  2. On Property Purchase Opportunities
  3. Late Check-Out and Extended Stays


3. Direct Revenue From Advanced Bookings

Properties that have rolled out an app are seeing approximately $100,000 in passive annual bookings.  These are bookings that have come in simply from a guest having the app on their phone.  Properties that are proactively communicating with guests are seeing significantly more annual revenue.  2020 was a very difficult year, and despite this we have seen direct app revenue growth year over year.

4. Mobile Apps Are A Touch-Free Solution

Touch-free and contactless have been hot buttons for all of 2020 and the demand by guests to limit person-to-person contact is not going away any time soon.  Just like grocery pickup, working from home, and streaming new movies; we all have found out how awesome it is to bypass the check in line and go right to our hotel rooms.

  1. Express Check In
  2. Digital Key


5. Hotel Apps Allow You To Bypass The Traditional Web

In summary, one of the most valuable aspects of an app is that it is outside of the typical web experience meaning you can engage with guests on a more personal level and ways that would never be possible online.

  1. No competition from OTAs or Competitors
  2. No additional costs to drive direct bookings from paid clicks or commissions
  3. Ability to proactively reach out to past guests
  4. Ability to create a frictionless shopping and booking experience through saved payments and personal information.

More information about how a mobile app can lead to success for your property:


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Submit your questions and topic ideas on Twitter to @_travelboom or info@travelboommarketing.com.

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