To better serve its global customer base and capture new business in the digital world, a premier hospitality supplier aimed to reach customers where and how they want to shop. A longtime PROS customer, the supplier has relied on PROS pricing solutions to replace catalog-based list pricing with a dynamic pricing strategy for non-contract (spot) pricing requests. AI-powered pricing intelligence provides reps with real-time, market-relevant pricing that incorporates all the latest data and harmonizes with the company’s existing pricing strategies.
To take the next step in creating an omnichannel buying experience, the supplier wanted to make prices available on its eCommerce portal, so customers could choose whether they preferred to shop online, engage with a sales rep, or move fluidly between the two.
Meanwhile, the supplier also wanted to help its sales teams be more productive by equipping them with the insights and tools to efficiently find sales opportunities, close deals faster, and further elevate the customer experience.
Challenge #1: Consistently Delivering a High-Performance eCommerce Experience
With its digital transformation underway, the hospitality supplier was months away from transitioning to the SAP Hybris eCommerce platform. However, there was another issue that still needed to be addressed, which was core to the implementation: how to handle the surge in price requests that comes with a real-time solution while ensuring a seamless shopping experience.
Request volume was expected to jump from 36,000 pricing requests per day, currently handled by an inside sales team, to tens of millions of requests through the eCommerce channel. A simple search for white hand towels might initially yield 24 different items that pop up on a shopper’s screen. The shopper might browse a little until they find the towel that meets their needs, generating more requests along the way. Ultimately, a single search might generate 150 web service requests.
The hospitality supplier needed to ensure that its eCommerce site could handle the calculation of millions of price requests without adversely impacting response time and system availability.
Solution: PROS Real-Time Pricing Engine
The company added the real-time pricing capabilities of PROS pricing solutions to provide the performance, scalability, and availability needed to power its eCommerce transformation.
The cloud-based solution instantaneously delivers prices that incorporate the latest market data to provide personalized, competitive prices to buyers. With 99.95% availability, the hospitality supplier doesn’t have to worry about downtime. Its new site can handle an extremely high number of price requests with no interruption to the business.
Challenge #2: Empowering Sales Reps to Discover Opportunities and Close Deals Faster
Much of a salesperson’s time is traditionally spent researching and qualifying leads. The hospitality supplier sought to help its sales team be more efficient and effective by leveraging a technology-driven solution to take the guesswork out of account management.
Solution: PROS Opportunity Detection
To uncover sales growth opportunities with existing customers, the hospitality supplier implemented PROS Opportunity Detection, a sales intelligence tool that applies machine learning to analyze transaction activity, recognize buying behavior trends, and identify new opportunities.
Opportunity Detection provides sales reps with cross-selling recommendations based on what similar customers have purchased. It also alerts sales rep of inconsistent buying patterns that present opportunities to deepen relationships with their customers.
The real-time price calculation capabilities of PROS pricing solutions enable the hospitality supplier to provide that Amazon-like experience that buyers have come to expect, delivering a connected and consistent experience between in-person and eCommerce sales channels. The company has confidence that it can provide a competitive, optimized price for every unique buyer engagement – even through self-serve experiences.
And with real-time recommendations from PROS Opportunity Detection, the supplier’s sales team can better determine how to effectively spend its time to locate credible opportunities and connect with customers in meaningful ways. Within the first six months of using Opportunity Detection, sales reps acted on 80% of the recommendations generated from the solution, which represents an average annualized potential revenue gain of more than $52 million.
Together, the PROS solutions deliver on the hospitality supplier’s strategy to:
- Better service new and existing customers alike with a modern eCommerce experience that is fast and efficient
- Move from static, catalogue-based list pricing to a real-time, dynamic pricing strategy
- Scale the business efficiently through an eCommerce sales channel with significantly lower overhead costs
- Empower sales reps with insights to quickly determine how to invest their time strengthening customer relationships, preventing churn, and growing wallet share
The supplier faced a massive disruption to its business in light of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. The leisure and hospitality industry was one of the hardest hit due to heavy travel restrictions and social distancing protocols implemented across the globe. This had a highly variable impact on demand across the supplier’s product lines, such as lower demand for linens and higher demand for cleaning products.
A single employee manages pricing for the supplier’s entire enterprise, a seemingly impossible task amid the public health crisis. However, this individual has been able to efficiently adjust pricing according to supply, cost, and demand volatility with PROS pricing science and real-time price calculation. The speed, efficiency, and flexibility of PROS solutions enables the supplier to deliver the most market-relevant prices, even during the most uncertain of times.
By embedding PROS AI-powered solutions throughout its pricing and selling processes, the hospitality supplier can deliver a multichannel customer experience with dynamic, market-relevant pricing that incorporates all the latest data and harmonizes with its business strategies. Above all else, the company can better meet customer needs and expectations for a fast and convenient shopping experience. In the digital economy, that’s precisely how B2B companies increase customer engagement, satisfaction, and retention.