5 Reasons Why Your Hotel Website isn’t Generating Bookings
As a hotelier, you probably already realise the importance of having a dedicated hotel website. What you might not realise is that there are many ways your website might actually be putting guests off booking with you.
It’s no longer enough to just have a website — the bare minimum effort isn’t going to turn browsers to bookers, especially with the myriad of beautiful hotel websites you have to compete with. Let’s take a look at a few ways your hotel website may be losing you customers and what you can do fix this.
One of the key reasons your hotel website is deterring potential guests is that it looks like it was made in 1999. If the design is poor with bad functionality, your guests will think your hotel is as neglected as your website.
Although we offer some excellent web design options at The Booking Factory, there are plenty of free options online to take advantage of. Wordpress, for example, lets you create a free website that’s easy to maintain and update without being a web expert.
There are also plenty of free and cheap pre-made themes which will make your website look slick, modern and professional. Bring your hotel website into the 21st century and you’re guaranteed to see more success with your hotel bookings.
Buying online is so commonplace these days with people often buying their weekly groceries at the touch of a button.
There’s no excuse not to offer online booking. If users have to dig through a website to find your contact details and ring the front desk they’ll most likely be put off before they’ve even got to the “Contact Us” page, opting instead to book through something like Booking.com — where they may indeed find your hotel, but then you’ve lost out on the extra money you would have made if they’d booked direct.
More and more people are shopping on the go, with 80% of consumers using a mobile device to look up product reviews, prices and find alternative options, so it’s important to make sure your site functions well on a smaller screen.
Opt for a responsive design so you can capitalise on the mobile market. If users have to constantly zoom in and click on tiny navigational buttons, they’re going to give up and use an app like Hotels.com instead to book a room — and again, you’ve either lost a customer all together, or lost money through OTA commissions.
Having a mobile optimised site is also great for search engine optimisation (SEO). Google takes into a account your site’s responsiveness when gathering results for mobile browsers, so if you want to be found in a Google search, you’d better make your site responsive.
If your site is full of outdated or poor photos, your guests will immediately turn off. This is one area that’s worth splashing out on. If you don’t have an artistic eye or a high-spec camera, then it’s definitely a good idea to hire a professional photographer to ensure your photos are sharp, professional and well lit.
Pick your most attractive looking rooms and make sure they’re clean and well-decorated. You should also think about taking pictures of any breathtaking views your hotel has.
If none of your rooms overlook a picture-perfect seaside resort or an electric London skyline, then send your photographer out to take some beauty shots of the surrounding location so guests can get a sense of the wonderful area they’ll get to explore if they visit your hotel.
Chances are your hotel already has some reviews floating about online somewhere, whether it’s on Tripadvisor, someone’s travel blog, or a local business directory. Make use of these 3rd party, non-biased sites and pull reviews from them (with a link to the review page) to your website.
Everyone knows that reviews from these external sites are totally honest, so if you’re serious about providing your guests with top-notch service, you shouldn’t have a problem with listing on these sites and linking to the positive reviews.
These sites also give you the opportunity to gather feedback and work on improving your hotel if you need to. If potential guests see that you’ve been proactive and helpful with any issues customers have had, then they can be confident that any problems will be resolved quickly and professionally.
If you work on improving your hotel website, you’re one step closer to impressing potential guests and getting more bookings. Follow these tips and go the extra mile to make your customer’s journey easier and less hassle-free, and the results will be worth the effort.
Need a hand with your hotel website or marketing? We’re here to help! Get in touch today to see how we can help you improve your website and get more direct bookings.