A Guide to Hotel Market Segments

What are market segments and why do you need to know them?

And what in the world does OTA Opaque mean?

Let's start with the first question! Market segments allow you to break your room revenue into different categories of consumers so you can match your offer to their needs and budget.

Another way to say it is: market segments are different rates for different types of customers.

They help you identify trends for your hotel!

Why does that matter?

Well, let's consider. What segment of the market is making you the most money? Maybe one segment has fewer bookings, but at such a high rate, it produces huge profits! That’s gold!

Maybe the market segments your hotel brings in change seasonally and your marketing needs to adjust to match. So important to know!

And maybe you’ve just heard the term “OTA opaque” used in hotel conversation one too many times and you NEED to know what the heck it means! 😊

I get that. You’re not alone!

That is why we made a little cheat sheet of the standard USALI (Uniform System of Accounts for the Lodging Industry) market segments.

You can download your market segment cheat sheet here, but first, let me make one more note.

Even though it is the standard list for the hotel industry, after looking at hundreds of PMS (reservation system) reports and Income Statements, I can tell you that not all hotels apply these market segments the same way.

My advice is to determine how YOU are going to apply them and stay consistent. Base your team training around YOUR use of market segments and what is best for your hotels.

You can even create additional market segments that are particularly applicable for your market. Just remember, the more specific you make the market segments to fit your hotel, the more difficult it may be to compare your numbers to other properties.

Click here to download the free Market Segment Cheat Sheet.

Oh yeah, I can't leave you hanging! OTA is an online travel agency and opaque is when they sell unsold inventory at a discount (like Travelocity or Expedia). These rates fall into the Transient Discount market segment! 😊