Do You Need a Digital Concierge for Your Vacation Rentals?
If you’ve seen the hype surrounding digital concierges in hotels, you might be thinking about investing in one for your vacation rental property.
While an Amazon Echo-style tool might sound like a great option for complementing contactless check-in processes, they fall very short of being the robust guest communication tools you need to deliver exceptional guest experiences.
As guest communication experts, we know that streamlining guest communication processes is a priority for you. We also know that digital concierges are not the answer.
Instead, RueBaRue is the all-rounder tool you need to build relationships with your guests through digital guidebooks, local area guides, SMS messaging, and more, and is the only holistic digital concierge alternative.
To see how it works all this works and more, book a demo now.
What is a digital concierge?
A digital concierge, also known as a virtual concierge, is a guest assistance tool powered by artificial intelligence.
A mix between Amazon’s Alexa and a digital guestbook, digital concierges can be accessed by guests through mobile apps, websites, televisions, or in-property tablets.
Most commonly, digital concierges are developed in the form of chatbots and voice assistants, whereby guests can ask them questions verbally. Using digital concierges, guests can check in and out of properties, ask for restaurant and activity recommendations in the local area, and access information about the property.
There are several types of digital concierges:
- Wall-mounted technology: GuestView Guide, for example, is a type of digital concierge solution that is accessed via a wall-mounted touch screen in vacation rental properties.
- Chatbots: MyPlazze is an example of a Facebook messenger chatbot designed for vacation rental properties that answers guest queries.
- Voice assistants: ConciergeBot is an example of a virtual concierge that is powered by artificial intelligence. Guests speak their questions into their phones and receive answers from the voice assistant.
Digital concierges are intended to provide streamlined customer service experiences and boost customer satisfaction by offering immediate and remote assistance.
What are the benefits of digital concierges for vacation rentals?
There are several benefits that vacation rental property managers can enjoy by using a digital concierge to help pad out the contactless guest experience:
Reduces time spent on guest communication
Since most guests usually have many of the same questions, digital concierges enable guests to find answers to their questions themselves. This reduces the amount of time property managers spend answering repetitive questions.
Improves guest satisfaction
Guests have quick access to information, which allows them to focus on enjoying their vacation instead of waiting for phone calls and emails to be answered.
Offers convenience for vacation rental property managers
Property managers can collect guest feedback automatically and limit the amount of in-person guest communication, freeing up time spent on repetitive tasks.
What are the limitations of digital concierges?
While digital concierges have a few upsides, they’re not robust enough to provide everything you need to deliver the best possible guest experience.
Similar to other virtual assistant technologies, such as Amazon’s Alexa, digital concierges also come with privacy concerns. Guests don’t want to be “listened to” while on vacation, and many may take issue with their data being stored and used in ways they’re not explicitly informed of.
They provide limited useful responses
Digital concierges can only respond to questions that have been programmed into them. For example, they can give you a list of restaurant recommendations, but guests will still need to do their own research to find the best result.
If guests have questions that the digital concierge can’t answer, they’ll instead rely on you to respond and answer them promptly. You also run the risk of not relaying all important information, such as house rules and check-out information, if the guest chooses not to access it.
It’s difficult for them to relay “awkward” information
Some of the most important pieces of information guests need to know are the most difficult for digital concierges to relay.
For example, Wi-Fi passwords with a mix of upper and lower case letters and numbers, complicated trash disposal instructions, and parking information are difficult pieces of information for digital concierges to relay coherently.
It’s much easier for guests to access them in a visual format such as a house manual , which also features helpful photos for maximum efficiency.
Guests can suffer from new-technology fatigue
Your guests want to enjoy a relaxing vacation and are not likely to be keen on learning how to use new technology during it. Voice assistants aren’t easy to use for everyone, which means you risk wearing guests out quickly—which won’t help you get better guest reviews .
Some guests may also not be very comfortable with using advanced conversational technology, while for some guests, digital concierges pose accessibility issues.
They’re not a holistic guest communication solution
Digital concierges aren’t comprehensive guest communication tools . You’ll also need to invest in extra tools such as email and SMS automation solutions, as well as technology that supports house manuals and local areas guides to ensure that the entire guest communication life cycle is covered.
The best alternative to digital concierges: RueBaRue
Digital concierges are far from the comprehensive tool you need to be able to fulfill guest requests and expectations, streamline communication, and personalize guest stays. They lead to siloed communication processes that ultimately create more stress for both guests and property managers.
RueBaRue, the end-to-end guest communication solution, allows you to manage the entire guest communication life cycle from within one platform. From house rules, house manuals, and local area guides, to welcome information and automated thank you notes , RueBaRue enables property managers to give their guests everything they need for an unforgettable vacation.
Let’s delve into exactly what makes RueBaRue the best alternative to a digital concierge.
RueBaRue is a holistic solution that covers the entire guest communication life cycle
RueBaRue’s robust features provide travelers with all of the information they might need before, during, and after their stay.
Vacation rental welcome books
These digital welcome books allow property managers to detail everything guests need. From check-in and check-out times, instructions on how to use amenities, house rules, welcome letters, and travel checklists, no stone is left uncovered.
Preview of RueBaRue's digital welcome book
SMS and Email Automation
Vacation rental managers can use RueBaRue’s SMS and email automation feature to schedule guest messages that match each part of your guests’ stay. You can even create your own personalized templates that complement your specific check-in and check-out processes.
Preview of RueBaRue’s SMS and Email Scheduler
Local Area Guides
RueBaRue’s local area guides feature enables you to easily share your best insider tips on restaurants, activities, and local attractions in the area to help guests experience the best of your area.
Packed with maps, restaurant reviews, and space to input your own tips, your guests have everything they need to enjoy your area at their fingertips.
Preview of RueBaRue’s local area guides
RueBaRue offers guests a much more personalized guest experience
Whereas digital concierges can only offer limited, canned responses, RueBaRue gives you the power to personalize each guest communication touchpoint.
For example, when you create email and SMS templates, you can edit them for each guest to include the guest’s name and other information, and you can schedule them for when it makes sense, e.g. to send guestbooks via email a week before their stay, and a post-check-in text a few hours after their arrival.
Instead of overwhelming guests with one, robotic concierge system, you can break up the guest communication life cycle into personalized, relevant parts.
RueBaRue centralizes all guest communication in one dashboard
Best of all, RueBaRue gives you the ability to see every guest exchange within one easy-to-use dashboard.
You even have access to a dedicated business line for guest texting, and an inbox your entire team can access through a mobile app. This eliminates any potential miscommunications and ensures that guests aren’t stuck waiting for an answer from one person.
With all of these features, you can ensure that guest communication isn’t siloed, and there’s no need to pay for any other tools to provide your guests with the best experience possible.
Should you trust your guest communication needs to a digital concierge?
Digital concierges leave a lot to be desired for both guests and property managers alike.
While digital concierges may work for the hotel industry, they're not robust enough for vacation rental properties.
Ensuring great guest experiences and getting more direct bookings requires an efficient tool that removes the heavy lifting out of repetitive and time-consuming guest communication processes. The vast limitations of digital concierges mean that vacation rental property managers will spend more time than they save rectifying the many information gaps left uncovered by digital concierges.
RueBaRue’s holistic guest communication platform gives you a 360° view of guest communication from within one dashboard so that you can deliver incredible, personalized experiences every time.
Is a digital concierge too limited for your guest communication needs? Try RueBaRue, an all-rounder tool that lets you build relationships with your guests through digital guidebooks, local area guides, SMS messaging, and more. To see how it works, book a demo now.
Frequently asked questions about digital concierges
Does a digital concierge make customer service impersonal?
Since digital concierges are conversational voice assistants powered by artificial intelligence, they offer a lower level of personalization that can be achieved using an end-to-end guest communication tool like RueBaRue.
What are the disadvantages of digital concierges?
Digital concierges can only provide limited responses, can provoke digital fatigue, and don’t cover the entire guest communication life cycle, meaning that property managers will need to invest in other tools to fill the gaps.
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