On average, 44% of guests at 17 luxury UK hotels were repeat visitors or staying upon recommendation or through word of mouth, according to a poll of 4795 guests.
The 4th Luxury Hotel Benchmarking Report by BluSky Marketing showed that as many as 71% of guests at one property were repeat visitors or visiting upon recommendation or via word of mouth.
Of that 71%, more than three quarters (76%) booked the hotel by calling direct, 9% booked through the hotel’s website and 5% emailed the property to book. Overall, 16% of bookings were generated through third-party channels.
The property with the lowest number of repeat bookings, or through recommendation or word of mouth achieved just 17% of guests through these channels.
Out of those 17% of guests, 66% booked via calling direct, the hotel website or via email. Overall, 40% of bookings came through third-party channels.
According to the report, the difference between the two properties equates to approximately £135,000 per annum, based on industry standard rates, presiming they were both 80-room properties, which is spent on the commission from the third-party channels.
BluSky Marketing said the Luxury Hotel Benchmarking Report illustrated that hotels who consistently deliver an exceptional guest experience could be selling as close to rack rate as possible, generated by non-commission sources.
 £135,000 cost saving figure based on an 80-room property, average room rate £180 excl. VAT, 75% occupancy, 15% commission paid to third parties. Property A only has 16% of bookings going via third-party channels (or £92,275) versus Property B with 40% of bookings (or £230,688) via third-party channels.