Now more than ever, an effective channel management strategy is crucial for growing your property management company. And it’s no secret that the best, and easiest, way to manage a multi-channel distribution strategy is by using property management software (PMS) that centralizes your entire business onto one platform. But not all softwares are created equally.
The infrastructure of your PMS - in what manner they connect, or integrate, to each channel - is just as important as any other part of your business operations. One pivotal factor is if the connection is made by an unofficial or official integration.
What do we mean by an unofficial integration? An unofficial integration is an outdated method of connecting to channels through a “private API” or a connection that is not approved by the channel partner.
PMS companies sometimes opt to connect unofficially for two reasons: one, they aren’t required to abide by the channel’s regulations, and two, they can sync information into their software that the channel does not allow through their official API.
Official integrations, on the other hand, are defined as a connection to a channel that is forged using the channel’s unique, official API. Because of the constantly evolving standards of each API, this is the modern, proper way to connect property management software and listing sites.
How do unofficial integrations affect your property management company?
Unofficial integrations are an outdated way of connecting to channels, with risks that outweigh any benefit. These risks include:
- Frequent software failures. Unofficial integrations don’t receive notice from channels about impending updates, meaning unofficial providers often don’t learn of changes until something breaks. Depending on the size of the update, your software partner could be down indefinitely, anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
- Growth of existing problems. Many property managers use software to eliminate their double bookings and guest communication errors, but unofficial integrations end up causing more of the same problems that they should be solving when their connections break.
- Lack of initial and ongoing certification. With no standards to meet, PMS companies that connect unofficially can allow their connections and channel knowledge to age, having a direct impact on your business’s performance. Always look for proof of channel authentication to validate the software’s level of credibility.
- Inability to troubleshoot support issues. When your business runs into an issue, unofficial software won’t be able to diagnose where in its tech stack the failure occurred. Without an official integration, you don’t have access to each channels’ technical support team, a key to resolving any listing site issue.
How your PMS connects to channels is just as important as its functionality.
Make sure you know the full story around your partner’s technology. Don’t waste time and money on an ill-equipped partner. If their integrations aren’t done correctly, it will cause more problems than it solves for you and your business.
What difference do official integrations make?
Official integrations optimize performance for short-term property management companies. In addition to mitigating the above risks that are inherent with unofficial integrations, official integrations directly benefit you through their:
- Reliability. “Official integration” is synonymous with long-term dependability and will solve your business’s problems, not cause more.
- Cutting-edge connections. Official integrations are the most modern way property management software connects to channels and listing sites, ensuring your channel management strategy is always at peak performance.
- Channel verification. Not every vendor is allowed access to a channel’s official API. Gaining access requires undergoing an initial API approval process and working with a channel to pass rigorous, channel-unique certification processes to ensure authenticity.
- Personal relationships. Comprehensive technology is only half of the property manager/property management software relationship. Official integrations mean passing the benefits of authentic, personal relationships with channels on to property managers. A true partner won’t just offer you exceptional software, but will also provide you with expert support and above-and-beyond service.
- Preferred Partner status. Many channels bestow PMS companies who connect officially and have met or exceeded technical performance benchmarks with a Preferred Partner badge. These credentials are reevaluated by channels quarterly, meaning PMS providers must continually meet ongoing expectations.
When you consider implementing or changing PMS, take the time to authenticate their technology.
Preferred Partner integrations are a sign of credibility, an endorsement by channels that a software provider is an expert in both functionality and technical performance.
Why would you pay for software that channels don’t sign off on?
Partnering with officially integrated software
Each channel created their own API for a reason: to maximize host performance on their site. When you partner with PMS with official integrations, you are using each listing site to its maximum functionality and benefit.
Don’t sell yourself short with PMS that undermines that performance.
MyVR is integrated to the five major channels and their associated brands only through official integrations. We are proud of our Preferred Partnerships, and as we continue to update our APIs and connections, we look forward to earning more channel accolades and passing the benefits of performance and functionality on to our clients.
At MyVR, we are committed to supporting you and your business’s goals any way we can.