Location is the primary reason business or leisure guests choose their hotel. Potential guests also select hotels based on past experience, recommendations from friends and family, and brand reputation.
The top three major contributors to guest satisfaction continue to be the guest room, departure process and pre-arrival and arrival experiences. These account for more than 70% of guest satisfaction in each of the six market segments surveyed, followed by hotel services and food and beverages.
While these findings come as no great surprise, it is interesting to see them confirmed by a new survey, the 2001 Domestic Hotel Guest Satisfaction Study, recently released by J.D. Power and Associates.
And of course, the current downturn in the economy is intensifying competition among hotel chains to capture a larger share of the business and leisure hotel guest market. One way of doing this is to increase guest loyalty and satisfaction.
One third strongly loyal
According to Linda Hirneise, partner and director of the hotel practice at J.D. Power and Associates: "More than one-half of all guests rate their overall satisfaction as high, but only approximately one-third show strong loyalty to a given hotel chain," said . "Instead of concentrating on the 1 percent of guests rating their stay as 'unacceptable,' managers should be striving to increase the proportion of guests who have an 'outstanding' experience. That's what creates hotel guest loyalty."
The study is based on 13,335 individual evaluations from a national representative sample of business and leisure hotel guests. Fifty-two hotel chains in six market segments (Economy/Budget, Mid-Price with Limited Food Service, Mid-Price with Full Food Service, Extended, Upscale and Luxury Hotel Chains) are included in the study.