Customer Spotlight: Furaveri Maldives
“Rate Insight has helped us cut down on rate disparity cases and thus increase direct bookings by around 215%.”
About Furaveri Maldives
Furaveri Maldives is set on a secluded island amidst the Indian Ocean’s sparkling blue waters. The resort offers guests 168 villas and residences spread across 23 hectares of lush tropical landscapes. Apart from relaxing on the white sand beaches, travellers can take advantage of the hotel’s broad variety of outdoor activities and wellness-related services.
Ashfaq Ashique, Revenue and Distribution Manager at Furaveri Maldives recently sat down with us for a chat. He shared how he and his team have been leveraging Lighthouse’s suite of business and market intelligence tools to get ahead of the competition and skyrocket their direct bookings.
Quick and easy access to live market and competitor data
Before we implemented Lighthouse’s platform, it was hard to access the data we needed when we needed it. Manual research, rate shopping and data collection were only part of the challenge. It was also difficult to align the information and use it to discover the market trends and make accurate demand predictions. The situation was similar in regards to internal data. Running reports, extracting information and organising it in an easy-to-read format was extremely time-consuming.
Lighthouse’s tools have transformed the way I work. They’re like a 24/7 buffet where I can get all the live data I need, any time of the day. I start with a look at Market Insight to see who will be travelling in the next 90 days. This window is perfect for us since it matches our current booking lead time. Next, I check Revenue Insight to see if I already have bookings for markets with emerging demand. Depending on my on-the-books business, I adjust my pricing and cancellation policies to optimise my positioning. Here, I use Comp Set data from Rate Insight.
All this has become a smooth and efficient process. Now, I can use live, forward-looking data to make well-informed pricing and distribution decisions and always stay a step ahead of the competition.
"Lighthouse’s tools have transformed the way I work. They’re like a 24/7 buffet where I can get all the live data I need, any time of the day."
Detecting upcoming demand peaks with forward-looking data
Before using Market Insight, I had to do a lot of manual research to know what was happening in our various markets. Now, spending 15-20 minutes a day checking Market Insight keeps me current on upcoming events and holidays around the hotel and in our source markets. If I see something interesting, I take a closer look and analyse travel search behaviour. On many occasions this has led to me discover and make the most of emerging demand shifts.
For example, I detected search pressure in the UK even before their travel restrictions were lifted. This showed me that although people couldn’t book yet, they were already gathering inspiration and planning trips. We decided to target this market with ads immediately and saw a handsome ROI once the government greenlit international travel.
Drastic increase in direct bookings
The parity tab in Rate Insight has been instrumental in achieving one of my major goals – increasing our direct bookings. For that, we need to offer the same or a better rate than our partners. Rate disparity cases used to make that difficult and we frequently lost business to channels that were undercutting us.
While I worked hard to solve this problem, it took a lot of time, manual research and logins from various locations via VPN to uncover and correct rate disparity cases. Rate Insight has been a game-changer here. It reveals which OTAs are undercutting us, and we can correct the situation immediately. That has led to a 215% increase in direct bookings because now our website consistently offers the best deal.
"Being able to see when and where our bookings will be coming from helps us allocate our resources to the most promising markets."
Data-driven strategies across all commercial departments
The department heads meet every Monday to go over business in the coming weeks and see if we have any untapped opportunities. For example, if Market Insight shows emerging demand in a specific market but we don’t see traffic from there, we discuss possible action steps. If it’s a retail-driven market, we’ll usually try geo-targeted ads. If it’s a wholesale market, our sales team will double down to win business.
Being able to see when and where our bookings will be coming from helps us allocate our resources to the most promising markets. That has considerably increased our ROI on ad spend and sales initiatives. Especially during the pandemic that was helpful as our limited resources went a longer way.
Apart from our commercial teams, even the GM and the finance department benefit from the data in Lighthouse’s tools. The GM uses it to get an overview of our performance and on-the-books business while the finance team can use it to understand upcoming cashflow.
Granular performance overview
Due to the way our rates and meal packages are set up, we have many different rate codes. That made it challenging to get a clear overview, track and analyze our performance in the past. Business Intelligence makes this much easier because it allows me to change how the rate codes are displayed in the reports. Now, I can group related codes and compress data to get a comprehensive overview. But it’s also possible to drill down and see details for every rate code, market segment, agent or OTA. This reveals trends in pick-up or cancellations and gives me the chance to react appropriately.
Market Insight’s hotspot view compliments that because it shows how demand progressed over the past eight weeks. That gives me an even deeper understanding of our performance relative to the market and helps me discover more upcoming opportunities.
"Lighthouse’s outstanding customer service has helped me make the most of Lighthouse’s tools and it sets them apart from other tech providers."
Amazing customer service
Lighthouse’s customer service is outstanding. I’ve never seen anything like it. Whenever I have questions about one of the modules, their functions or the data, they respond immediately. Afterwards, they check if their reply was satisfactory and offer extra support and information if needed.
I also appreciate the follow-up. In case they weren’t able to provide a full answer or solution right away, someone always gets back to me with what I need. This has helped me make the most of Lighthouse’s tools and it sets them apart from other tech providers.
A word to your peers
If you don’t invest in the right tech tools, you lose a lot of time gathering and organizing data. But you can’t afford that if you want to win business in a competitive environment.
Lighthouse’s tools solve this issue from the moment you implement them. Their live and forward-looking data helps you save time, optimize your positioning and drive revenue.
This gives you a huge advantage over your competition and allows you to get and stay ahead of them. That’s true everywhere but especially if your compset is slow to adopt new technology.