For most people, time spent planning a vacation is much more than the duration of the stay and in such cases, hotel reviews and feedback play an important part. In December 2014, Piquor Technologies-promoted RepUp entered the travel and tourism segment to address this issue. It launched reputation and customer experience management services for a limited group of partners before launching its major version nine months later in 2015.
“We have installed different listening ports to have exact visibility about what is going around, then we benchmark the customer experience against other industry standards, peers or competitors and then we help the hotel improve its services,” said Pranjal Prashar, CEO and founder, RepUp.
RepUp is integrated with property management system and the central system of a hotel’s operations. Once the guest checks out of the property, the company collects data from the guest for review and shares it with the hotel.
“Our tech platform is installed in hotels. We know the details of the customer that validates our content’s authenticity. Our data is more authentic that the one shared by an OTA,” claimed Prashar.
To provide deep analytics of connected data, RepUp focusses on integration with OTAs and industry applications in the first phase of operations. Under customer experience management, the end result for hotels is improvement in customer experience and online rating. RepUp provides hotels with inputs in their operation standard and helps them generate more user generated content on their respective websites. According to Prashar, customer experience is fundamental for all service-based industries. RepUp works as a customer experience platform but does not guide bookings for a hotel. “We are a non-transacting platform because that takes place on an OTA or booking engine of the hotel. We are the silent B2B layer between the hotel and the guest,” Prashar explained.
Clients of RepUp have access to a dashboard which gives them relevant information about different departments. With a base of 20,000 rooms across more 500 properties in India, RepUp provides input which the hotels can use to improve their services. In 2017, RepUp will be looking at some major collaborations with OTAs and by the end of the 2020 it seeks to have 900,000 rooms under its fold.
Earlier this year, RepUp tied up with TripAdvisor as its authorised partner for review collection of its clients in South Asia including Thailand, Indonesia and Sri Lanka. RepUp will be involved in review collection, analytics and collaborations to improve guest satisfaction for around 200,000 hotels in the region.
Rep Up helps its clients in benchmarking and managing its operations through its four-stage reputation maturity model. The company claims that the technology analyses review data with almost 90% accuracy.
Prashar added that reputation management has led to an increase in sales for hotels. “We have seen the correlation as to how improvement in rating generates sales for the hotel. A one point increase in rating leads to a 14-15% hike in revenue for the hotel year-on-year,” he said. But the number varies based on the type and location of the hotel and the ticket size.
The company works on a subscription model, charging an annual fee from each hotel. The subscription varies based on size, locality, and services, as larger chains require more automation while the needs of a smaller hotel can be fulfilled by a thin layer of solutions. Prashar pegged the average subscription at $1200 per month for 100 rooms.
The founder declined to share the revenues of the company but said that its revenues are growing 18-19% month-on-month as of quarter ended December 31, 2016. In 2017, the company expects to touch $1 million in annual recurring revenue, up 600% from the previous year.
Over the next couple of months, RepUp will expand its services for its enterprise clients such as Radisson Hitec City, ITC Welcom Heritage, Fortune, Lemontree Hotels, Fabhotels, Pride Hotels, and Jaypee hotels, among others. “We will open a customer experience command centre for enterprise clients that will help them to listen to their guests and the workflow will be triggered from the system,” added Prashar.
Prashar dubbed it as the glitch management system which will collect queries and complaints on the dashboard in real-time. The pricing for the command centre starts from $500 per month and has 1000 rooms on board.