Hotel Distribution 2020 Part I: The Channel Mix

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by Wouter Geerts + Skift Team - Nov 2020

Skift Research Take

The hotel distribution landscape is complex, with hotel rooms being sold and promoted through many different channels. COVID-19 has certainly impacted how and where hotel rooms are being distributed, but it is unlikely that this disruption will be sustained long term. That's not to say that disruption isn't coming, though.

Report Overview

Hotel distribution is a complex process. In a market where demand fluctuates strongly, and a myriad network of channels compete for sales of the same room inventory, hotels need to understand how the different channels operate and have a clear strategy in place to allow for the best possible distribution of their rooms.

Skift Research has put together two reports to tackle this crucial element in hotel operations. In this first report, we focus on providing a greater understanding of the key issues that are shaping the channel mix, focusing on the major channels of direct booking, OTAs, and bed banks and wholesalers. We also discuss the role of metasearch engines.

Together with the second report, which will focus on the technology landscape and tech vendors that enable hotel distribution, this series provides a consensus view of the key issues and main opportunities for hoteliers, tech vendors, and distribution platforms to come out of the current pandemic-induced crisis.

What You'll Learn From This Report

  • How hotels distribute their rooms to a complex web of channels, and how the COVID pandemic has impacted this
  • How direct bookings have grown as part of the channel mix, and the importance of Net RevPAR
  • The size and reach of the largest OTAs, and how their relationship with hotels has evolved
  • The role of bed banks in the hotel distribution landscape, and how disruption might be coming
  • How the hotel metasearch bidding process works, and why Google will only grow its influence
  • How we expect COVID, and other disruptions, to impact the future of hotel distribution

Executives Interviewed

  • Enzo Aita - Global Head of Business Development at Hyperguest
  • Paul Anthony - Digital Commercialisation Director at Hotelbeds
  • Katja Bohnet - Director of Hotel Distribution at Amadeus
  • Tom Buckley - Co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer at Wildebeest
  • Tom Corcoran - President and CEO at TCOR Hotel Partners
  • Evan Davies - Founder at Channex.io
  • Cindy Estis Green - Co-founder and CEO at Kalibri Labs
  • Mark Fancourt - Co-founder at TravHoTech
  • Mike Ford - Managing Director at SiteMinder
  • Quinten Gazendam - Chief Growth Officer at SmartHotel
  • Narcis Ghidanac – Revenue Manager at Me by Melia Dubai
  • Pierre-Charles Grob - CEO at D-Edge
  • Hamzah Hafesji​ - Senior Product Manager at Guestline
  • Craig Hewett - Co-founder at Wego.com
  • Christoph Hütter - Revenue Strategy Consultant at Christoph Hütter Revenue Management
  • Shawn Jereb - Vice President of Revenue Management at Montage Hotels
  • Chris Jones - Product Manager at Guestline
  • Ullrich Kastner - Managing Director and Founder at MyHotelShop
  • Steve Lowy - Founder and CEO at The Residence Apartments
  • Bela Nagy - Senior Vice President Revenue Strategy and Performance at Accor
  • Michaele Papenhoff - Managing Director at h2c
  • Simone Puorto – Founder and CEO at Travel Singularity
  • Amit Rahav - Co-founder and Chief Revenue Officer at Hyperguest
  • Alexandra Fernandez Ramos - Chief Product and Sales Officer at Travelsify
  • Murtaza Rangwala - Principal Consultant and Owner at RevUplift
  • Karin van Rhee - COO at Juyo Analytics
  • Sally Richards - Managing Director at RaspberrySky Services
  • Joan Sanz - Founder at ChartOK
  • Chinmai Sharma - President, Americas at RateGain
  • Mark Struik - Commercial Director at Postilion Hotels
  • Johnny Thorsen - Vice President Strategy & Innovation at American Express Digital Labs
  • Monica Xuereb - Chief Revenue Officer at Loews Hotels
  • Xabier Zabala - Global Operations Director at Hotelbeds
  • We would also like to thank Michael Frenkel and Klaus Kohlmayr of IDeaS for their insights and industry introductions. Furthermore, we appreciate the teams at SimilarWeb, OTA Insight, Kalibri Labs, MyHotelShop, STR, and D-Edge sharing their data for this report.

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