The Booking.com Genius program

All you need to know as a Genius partner

 

Introduction to Genius

The Genius program is an effective marketing tool designed to connect our best partners with Booking.com’s most qualified bookers. We give partners extra exposure that offers additional value exclusively to Genius members.

To make it easier for Genius members to discover properties that are most relevant to them, Genius properties are boosted in search results and receive extra visibility through special tagging and dedicated Genius sorters and filters. This helps them stand out among other properties in the same area and drives more traffic to their property pages, which may increase conversion rates, occupancy, and incremental revenue all year. 

To ensure the quality of the Genius program, only select properties are invited to join. To qualify for the Genius program, a partner needs to have an average score of 7.5 or higher, and a minimum of 3 reviews. The property also needs to meet our pricing criteria. Exceptions on pricing can be made for different countries in accordance with local regulations.

To manage settings and monitor the impact of the program, Genius partners can access the Genius Hub anytime. This can be found under the Extranet’s Opportunity tab. Once there, you’ll also find more recommendations on how to take full advantage of the program.

See if you’re eligible in just a few seconds

The benefits of Genius

Genius means increased visibility.

Genius partners get a boost in visibility when logged in Genius members are browsing for properties in their area on Booking.com. This makes it easier for members to find the properties that offer them more value, and gives Genius partners up to 40% more views in our search results.

Lots of things go into visibility boosts, including:

  • An automated visibility boost in search results for Genius properties.
  • A Genius logo shown in listings (both on our site and app).
  • Dedicated Genius sorter (alternative ranking) and filters that move Genius properties to the top of the search results on Booking.com.
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Of course, demand in any area changes over time, and we understand Genius partners want to adapt their strategies accordingly. That’s why we offer the flexibility to temporarily suspend all Genius promotions for up to 30 days each year. Partners can do this in the Genius hub under the Suspend Genius discount tab.

Genius means increased occupancy and more revenue

The combination of offering exclusive rates to Genius members, a boost in search results, and other factors increase the likelihood of getting bookings as a Genius partner. On average, we see an 18% increase in bookings when a partner joins Genius.

Being in the Genius program is just the start. Genius partners also receive additional opportunities that help optimize their advertising strategies for specific target audiences to increase their properties’ competitiveness and reach their business goals. 

Learn more about the recommendations for your property here

It’s not just visibility and occupancy that go up for Genius properties. On average, Genius partners see a 17% increase in revenue (including the cost of any discounts they offer Genius guests).

The Genius report on the Extranet enables partners to monitor the revenue generated through the Genius program over time.

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Genius means increased attention from high-value guests

Genius partners get prioritized visibility in the search results of Genius members, Booking.com’s highest-value guests. Genius members are more experienced guests who both spend and book more on average. They’re more reliable and committed to fulfilling their bookings, which results in both fewer cancellations and no-shows when they make a booking with a Genius rate.

We also see that Genius members travel more internationally, book further in advance, and leave higher guest reviews compared to non-Genius members. In return for offering exclusive promotions to this high-value Close User Group (CUG), we make it easier for Genius partners to capture the attention of these guests and increase their competitiveness. 

The results of Genius

In the personalized Genius report on the Extranet, we provide partners with key performance metrics to track the impact of Genius on their property’s performance over time. The key performance metrics include: 

  • Monthly bookings: Net stayed bookings generated by Genius members vs. normal guests.
  • Average spend per booking, length of stay, and booking window. 
  • Cancellation rate.
  • Incremental revenue. 

The performance insights presented in this report are based on bookings completed by Genius members. Note: In the first days after partners join the program, they might not see all data insights immediately since this depends on the number of stayed Genius bookings they receive.

Additionally, the Booker insights report on the Extranet provides you with more data on where your current guests are coming from. Based on these insights, you can set up a Genius country rate, which optimizes your targeting strategy to drive more bookings.

Genius room set-up

To get our partners started, we automatically enable the mandatory 10% Genius discount on their least expensive and/or most popular room, boosting their property to attract high-value Genius guests.

We find Genius partners who offer a variety of rooms receive more reservations not only for their best-selling rooms, but also drive bookings to other room types. If you have multiple room types and want to take full advantage of the Genius program, we strongly recommend setting up these rooms to include Genius promotions.

Partners can select the rooms they want to add in the Genius hub. In situations where the least-expensive room isn’t the best-selling room, the discount will apply to both room types. Genius partners can select additional rooms based on their preferences in the Genius hub.

Genius membership levels

Based on the extensive research we’ve done with our Genius members to identify what they really love, we launched Genius promotions exclusively available to Genius Level 2 members.

  • Genius Level 1 for guests: 2+ stayed bookings in the past 2 years
  • Genius Level 2 for guests: 5+ stayed bookings in the past 2 years 

Since partners who offer these promotions become more appealing and receive extra exposure on our platform through a specially designed sorter and extra tagging in the search results, this helps partners drive additional bookings.  This brings the added benefit of attracting guests who are less likely to cancel and book further in advance.

We make sure guests using Booking.com programs remain high-quality by removing those who engage in fraudulent or improper behavior. 

Genius promotions

We offer Genius partners the opportunity to set up promotions to optimize their advertising strategies and target select Genius audiences. This helps partners increase their competitiveness and get additional bookings during periods when they feel they need to drive more business. If partners meet the eligibility criteria for these promotions, they have the freedom and flexibility to turn these promotions on or off, depending on the demand for their property.

Genius promotions are fully flexible and can be activated when a property owner or manager feels like they need more exposure to high-value guests who tend to spend more, book more, and cancel less.

Learn more about promotions in the Genius hub

Additional discounts exclusive to Genius members

Benefits of offering an additional 5% discount: 

  • Securing revenue faster 
  • Getting up to 30% more bookings 
  • Easy to set up and stay in control 

Partners offering an extra 5% discount attract guests who spend more and book earlier. This promotion is available exclusively for Genius Level 2 members. We see these partners receive up to 30% more bookings compared to those who don’t. 

Learn more about exclusive Genius discounts

Room upgrade promotions

Room upgrade promotions are available exclusively to Genius Level 2 members and an effective way for partners to sell more of their higher room types. Partners who set up this promotion receive extra visibility in search results when Genius Level 2 members are browsing our site.

When a room upgrade promotion gets booked, the upgraded room is automatically allocated in the system. This means no operational hassle for our partners and no double-bookings. A room upgrade is different from a discount. We see that Genius Level 2 members are less likely to cancel these promotions. 

Benefits of offering a room upgrade include:

  • Boosted visibility in search results
  • Selling higher room types to Genius Level 2 members, while keeping best-selling rooms available to other guests 
  • Driving more traffic to the listing and selling more rooms overall
  • The booking is automatically allocated in the system, which means no double-bookings, no complications, and no extra effort. 
  • Reduced risk of cancellations. 

Implement your own room upgrades

Breakfast promotions

Partners who set up breakfast promotions see a 24% growth in bookings on average. They stand out in search results and are included in sorters and filters when Genius Level 2 members search for a property. In addition, partners can take a more strategic approach to sell more higher room types by selecting the rooms they prefer. 

Benefits of offering a breakfast promotion:

  • Extra tagging in the search results
  • Selling more higher room types 
  • Improving guest satisfaction 
  • Benefits from the “Breakfast included” filter and the “Genius Level 2 benefits” sorter 
  • Increase in bookings while keeping ADR low
  • Reduction of costs and food waste 

Set up your breakfast promotion

Partners who set up an additional 5% discount, a room upgrade promotion, or a breakfast promotion only offer them to Genius Level 2 members. This lets partners set up more targeted pricing strategies to drive even more lookers into bookers. 

Genius business rates

Partners can also set up Genius business rates to attract independent business bookers who are price sensitive and budget conscious. These travelers are selected based on criteria including travel purpose, previously booked business travel, and search behavior. They’re more likely to return and cancel less often. 

Benefits of offering promotions available exclusively to Genius business guests: 

  • 1 out of 5 guests on Booking.com are traveling for business. 
  • Genius Business results in 16% more business bookings on average. 
  • Business travelers return to the same location 60% more often.
  • Business travelers cancel 50% less on average. 
  • Business travelers tend to spend more on additional services within your property. 
  • Business travelers are more likely to book weekdays.

Partners who want to offer discounted rates only to business travelers who are Genius members must be Genius partners. 

Set up your business rates 

Genius country rates

A Genius country rate is a special rate that’s only offered to Genius guests from a specific region or country. This rate won’t be visible beyond the selected region or country. Since Genius is a closed user group program, it won’t be available publicly. In the Genius hub, we provide you personal recommendations on how to set up these rates for your property based on the Genius guests who stayed with you in the past 12 months.

  • Drive additional bookings from Genius members from particular regions. 
  • Exclusively available to Genius members from a specific region or country.
  • Receive personal recommendations and data insights to help you easily pick the regions that are worth targeting to increase revenue.

Learn more about Genius country rates

 

Find what’s right for you

If you’re already a Genius partner or are thinking about becoming one, we’ll leave you with a one of our key learnings.

To build a diverse pricing strategy, you need 3 components:

  • Rate plans
  • Targeted rates
  • Promotions

On Booking.com, you can combine (or "stack") these in different ways. Find out how Genius promotions work in combination with your rate set up.

Build your own pricing strategy

Depending on your property type, you can stop offering discounts to Genius guests by either opting out of the program on the Extranet or contacting us via the Extranet’s Inbox, so we can update your page.

However, after opting out, you won’t be eligible to rejoin the program for six months.