QR Codes (Quick Response Codes) have proved their value this year as an effective tool for quickly transitioning offline customers to an online, digital space for increased customer engagement and information exchange.
While many may have considered QR Codes as a short term invention with limited lifespan, these universally recognized codes have a new lease on life as we face an unforeseeable future of contactless engagement.
For hotels in particular, QR Codes offer a range of benefits to reduce friction, increase customer engagement and improve the guest journey either by linking the code to specific web pages or operations within an app. Below, we explore four key benefits of QR Codes for hotels and how they can be displayed and applied.
To adhere to government regulations and support Covid authorities, hotels can use QR Codes to help aid in the process of contact tracing by collecting the contact details of all guests on property at any one time. With contact details, time of visit and location within the hotel, authorities can locate and contact all relevant people whenever a positive case has been identified.
With customers potentially feeling more unease than ever before, capturing real-time customer feedback is more important than ever. Customers can scan strategically placed QR Codes and be directed to a customer feedback tool like Local Measure Pulse. Feedback can be specific to different locations or services within the hotel such as the bar, restaurant, spa or gym and by notifying the hotel in real-time, frontline staff can resolve issues and preemptively reduce any negative online feedback at a later stage.
Hotels can reduce friction and improve the customer journey by providing guests with QR Codes that either provide tools or hold information without the staff dependency that previously may have resulted in customer wait times. QR Codes can provide easy self-service check-in and check-out options as well as giving guests the ability to seamlessly book a taxi, spa treatment, dining experience, or to order room service. By integrating their room number into the QR Code settings, guests will not be burdened with having to enter superfluous information. QR Codes can also help communicate information that was previously in printed format, now in digital form. Examples might include linking QR Codes to restaurant menus, hotel room directories, spa treatments or digital newspaper subscriptions.
By linking QR Codes to the hotel messaging system, hotel guests can be prompted to communicate directly with the front desk or concierge staff using popular social media and mobile messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and SMS. By managing these digital communications via a single platform, hotels can seamlessly communicate with guests in real-time, providing customer service convenience and direct access to a sought-after human.
How and where should QR codes be displayed?
QR Codes can be presented in two forms - printed or digital. Some examples for printed applications include tent cards in hotel rooms and facilities, wall posters, conference notepads, bar coasters and paper napkins. In all cases, these should be strategically placed as a visible prompt for the purpose they hold eg. a tent card in the mini fridge directing guests to order drinks via room service or on the dining table directing guests to the restaurant menu. Digital displays have greater flexibility for change and allow hotels to leverage existing signage options such as in-room tv screens, digital screens in communal spaces, conference room display boards and elevator screens. The key is that QR codes must be visible, convenient, and strategically placed. To derive even more value, hotels might use QR Codes to grow their marketing subscriber base, increase loyalty program sign-up or re-target customers with marketing campaigns to increase revenue.
By reducing the dependency on hotel staff for information exchange and process delivery, guests now have greater control of their own customer journey. From a hotel perspective, QR Codes increase customer engagement, provide convenient customer service and with the right integration, build rich customer profiles of both loyal and potential guests.