Marketing your property online can get complicated fast. With so many online travel agencies (OTAs) to choose from, how do you manage your property’s availability across all of them? The hospitality industry has come up with two strategies: “central pool of inventory” and “channel allotment”. While both have their pros and cons, there is a clear winner. Central pool of inventory saves you time and money. We’ll explain the pros and cons below, as well as what you need to do to optimize your inventory’s allotment.
Channel allotment refers to an inventory management process where you must manage every channel’s inventory individually. Channel allotment means a property does not use a channel manager. Therefore, you must update every channel individually. In order to prevent over-bookings, most properties divide their inventory between channels. This makes it difficult to optimize revenue strategy because all your available rooms are not on the market.
Without a channel manager, you are also required to do the following:
There are several risks associated with channel allotment:
When your property uses a channel manager, you can implement a central pool of inventory strategy. Instead of dividing your inventory up evenly across all online channels you use, a channel manager makes OTAs all draw from one giant pool of available inventory, until inventory is gone. A channel manager makes life a lot easier because it gives you one central location to manage your entire inventory. You no longer need to log into every extranet every day and worry about missing bookings.
Here’s how it works:
There are many advantages a central pool of inventory as it allows you to set rates and restrictions:
The Best Part of a Channel Manager
Central Pool of Inventory
Channel allotment and central pool of inventory both have benefits and risks. But, central pool of inventory is clearly a safer, more profitable solution for your property. Channel allotment reduces productivity and revenue opportunity, putting your business at risk. Central pool of inventory offers fewer risks and more benefits for your property.