Here are top 10 tips for enhancing your channel distribution strategy: 1. Invest time to understand your current distribution mix, costs and volumes associated with each channel, and how it compares to your aspired business mix. 2. Train your front office team to match the public room rate (on an OTA for example), when asked by a walk-in or a reservation call. Too many guests book their rooms from using their iPads, while standing in the hotel reception. 3. Ensure rate and content parity. Make sure only high-quality descriptions and pictures of rooms, restaurants and facilities are populated across all channels. Major channels that do not produce many room nights for the property at the moment should not be ignored. 4. Prioritise direct channels. Estimate the investment for building direct channels or meta-search integration by calculating how much is currently paid for OTA commissions! 5. Offer dynamic packages exclusively on your website, with extra amenities or experiences. This can shift share to the direct website and generate incremental bookings. A recent example is Marriott offering free Wi-Fi to all loyalty members, but only if they book directly. 6. Seasonal strategy: limit intermediaries with high commissions during peak season and push low-commission and direct channels instead. Conversely push high-commission channels during low season. 7. Pay attention to channel-specific reviews. Aim to increase number of positive reviews on those channels, which currently have a small number of mediocre reviews. 8. Never allow your hotel to fill up with high-commission bookings. Gradually close down commissionable channels as the hotel is filling up and sell the last available rooms direct. 9. If it is in your best interest to rank high or be ‘recommended’ by an OTA, your hotel generally must offer full availability with no blackout dates. 10. Ensure your direct channels are mobile- and tablet-friendly, and that “click-to-call”, “e-mail now” and “book now” functionalities exist and work properly. OTAs grew astronomically because of the ease of use. So, make sure that you’re actively making direct booking easy. Get the full story at RateGain