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What Commission Rates Does Booking.com Charge Hotels?

As the hospitality industry continues to grow, online travel agencies (OTAs) have become an essential tool for hotels to reach potential guests. One of the most popular OTAs is Booking.com, which boasts over 28 million listings in more than 228 countries and territories. However, it’s important for hotels to understand the commission rates charged by Booking.com and how they compare with other platforms in the industry.

What is Booking.com?

Booking.com is an online travel agency (OTA) that allows hotels to list their properties and manage reservations from around the world. The platform provides a secure payment gateway and a range of other features, including a loyalty program, traveler reviews, and discounts for bigger bookings.

Hoteliers use Booking.com for a variety of reasons. The platform’s expansive reach makes it an ideal place to list properties and attract potential customers from around the world. The platform also provides hoteliers with access to a range of marketing tools, such as its loyalty program and discounts for bigger bookings, which can help increase revenue and boost occupancy rates.

Commission Rates Charged by Booking.com

Booking.com charges a commission rate based on the room rate, which varies from 10% to 25%. The commission percentage is determined by several factors such as location, peak seasons, number of rooms, and length of stay. Hotels can also opt for the commission-free model, where they pay a fixed fee per booking instead of paying a commission percentage.

Compared to other OTAs like Expedia and Airbnb, Booking.com’s commission rates are relatively high. Expedia charges between 10% to 15%, while Airbnb charges between 3% to 5%. However, Booking.com’s high commission rates are offset by its large user base and extensive marketing efforts, which can help hotels reach a broader audience.

Effects on Hotel Revenue

Booking.com’s commission rates can significantly affect hotel revenue. For instance, if a hotel room costs $100 per night, and Booking.com charges a 15% commission rate, the hotel will have to pay $15 for each booking, leaving them with $85. This can impact a hotel’s profitability, especially for smaller hotels or those operating in low-margin markets.

However, it’s worth noting that Booking.com’s extensive marketing efforts can help hotels generate more bookings, thereby increasing their overall revenue. Additionally, the platform provides hotels with tools such as revenue management software, which helps hotels optimise their pricing strategies, resulting in higher profits.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Using Booking.com

One of the main benefits of using Booking.com is its large user base, which can help hotels reach a broader audience. The platform also provides hotels with various marketing tools, including targeted advertising and social media integration, which can help hotels increase their visibility.

Furthermore, the platform’s revenue management software can help hotels optimise their pricing strategies and make more informed decisions. Booking.com also has customer support teams available 24/7, which can be a major advantage.

On the other hand, Booking.com’s commission rates are relatively high compared to other OTAs, which can significantly affect a hotel’s profitability. Booking.com also has strict rules regarding cancellations and refunds that can be difficult for hotels to adhere to.

Additionally, hotels may become overly reliant on the platform, thereby limiting their ability to generate direct bookings and reducing their control over pricing and customer service. Thus, it’s important for hotels to carefully evaluate the pros and cons of using Booking.com before signing up with the platform.

Booking.com’s Marketing Initiatives for Hoteliers

Booking.com offers a range of marketing initiatives that can help hoteliers improve their online presence and attract more guests. Some of these initiatives include:

  • Preferred Partner Program: This program gives hotels increased visibility on the Booking.com website by featuring them in search results and offering a “Preferred” badge. In return, hotels agree to pay a higher commission rate.
  • Promotions and Deals: Hotels can create special promotions and deals to attract more guests during specific periods or events. These promotions can be customised based on factors such as length of stay, booking window, and room type.
  • Genius Program: This loyalty program targets frequent travellers who book through Booking.com. Hotels can offer exclusive discounts and benefits to Genius members, which can help drive repeat business and increase brand loyalty.
  • Targeted Advertising: Booking.com offers targeted advertising options, allowing hotels to reach potential guests based on factors such as location, travel preferences, and booking history.
  • Social Media Integration: Hotels can integrate their Booking.com listings with their social media profiles, making it easier for potential guests to find and book their property.

Hoteliers choose to use Booking.com’s marketing strategies because they understand the value of leveraging the platform’s extensive user base and powerful marketing tools to increase visibility and attract more guests.

By employing these strategies, such as the Preferred Partner Program, Genius Program, targeted advertising, and social media integration, hoteliers can effectively reach a broader audience and cater to specific traveler preferences.

As a result, hotels can enjoy increased bookings, drive repeat business, and cultivate brand loyalty. These marketing initiatives ultimately contribute to higher sales, enabling hoteliers to offset the impact of commission rates and improve their overall profitability.

Recommendations and Insights

To mitigate the impact of Booking.com’s commission rates, hotels can consider implementing a multichannel distribution strategy, which includes both direct bookings and partnerships with other OTAs. Direct bookings can help hotels generate higher profits since there are no commission fees involved, while partnerships with other OTAs can help hotels reach a broader audience.

Hotels can also negotiate commission rates with Booking.com based on factors such as length of stay, room type, and seasonality. Additionally, hotels can leverage Booking.com’s marketing tools to reduce their reliance on the platform by driving more direct bookings.

Use Preno For Channel Management

For hotels looking to manage their OTAs more efficiently, Preno‘s cloud-based channel management platform can be an invaluable tool. It allows hotels to quickly create and update rates and inventory across multiple channels in real-time, while also providing powerful insights into revenue performance and customer behaviour.

With Preno, hotels can increase their direct bookings by leveraging its various marketing features, as well as save time and money by automating manual processes. This can help hotels gain more control over their online distribution and ultimately improve their profitability in the long term.

In conclusion, hotels need to understand the commission rates charged by Booking.com and how they compare with other platforms in the industry. While the platform provides hotels with access to a large user base and various marketing tools, it’s essential to weigh the benefits against the potential impact on profitability. By implementing a multichannel distribution strategy and negotiating commission rates, hotels can reduce their reliance on OTAs and increase their overall profitability.

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About the author

Kendra, the Marketing Content Manager at Preno, brings her expertise in Marketing and Communications to help hoteliers stay ahead of the curve. With a deep passion for the industry, she is committed to providing valuable insights and strategies for success.

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