They could have been competitors. But True NZ has chosen to power its services using STAAH’s industry-leading distribution platform. Now, they’re both glad this partnership came about.
By 2014 it was clear to True NZ that their collection of online guides for small accommodation providers needed to be taken to the next level.
“OTAs brought with them a culture where consumers sought ‘everything now’,” says Mike Raymer, co-founder of True NZ. “Instant availability of rooms, rates and ability to book was no longer a value-add. It was a need and we had to incorporate it in order for our clients to remain competitive and be successful.”
True NZ decided to build SMART GMS – Small Medium Accommodation Real Time Guest Management System. This would be an integrated application featuring the functionality of a booking engine, reservation system and channel manager. It would be available to address the unique needs of the small and medium properties, particularly the one to three bedrooms’ B&Bs. The key was affordability. It was crucial to offer the SMART GMS at a price that was affordable for such small operators.
True NZ already had a booking engine and reservation system – developed by Mike’s business partner and company co-founder, Murray Ward. At the time, True NZ had the choice of developing its own channel manager. But the process would have been time-consuming and expensive. So they shopped for a channel manager in the open market.
“STAAH stood out from its competitors, not just because of the quality of its products, but also because of the support its team offers to partners,” says Mike. “Today, we’re glad to have made this choice.”
“SMART GMS is a very unique platform for small operators such as B&Bs to market themselves,” says Edwin Saldanha. “The global reach SMART GMS and STAAH affords even such small players is crucial for these operators to maximise their chances of being booked and ensure they are generating the most revenue possible.”
Over the past two years of their partnership, SMART GMS has evolved into the very best a system of its nature could be thanks to the vision and marketing of True NZ and technical prowess of STAAH.
A powerful tool developed for the unique needs of small and medium accommodation providers, SMART GMS gives operators an international audience through OTAs. It also allows them to get a commitment to bookings in the form of deposits or credit card details by way of integrating with payment gateways and easily manage the whole booking process.
For STAAH, this partnership has helped extend their reach to a group of accommodation providers who were previously unable to use its suite of applications. Together STAAH and True NZ are helping more than 100 B&Bs around New Zealand maximise their online potential, with a vision to get many more operators of this size on SMART GMS.
“With technical improvements constantly under way, including the possibility of a more seamless integration with Airbnb, SMART GMS is set to go places, taking its users to successful heights,” says Mike.