Nobody has qualms using the Internet today to book their holidays, so a hotel’s best introduction has to be its website. But a good website, adapted to clients and search engines, is not just essential to obtain a global vision of our business and have an Internet presence; a hotel’s website is an important part of the hotel itself, just like its rooms, services and facilities, it also becomes one of the major sources of income, obtaining up to half of direct bookings.
Just as with hotels, there’s no accounting for taste, but there are some features that all hotels websites must have if they are aiming for a good conversion rate:
– Design and usability, the perfect combination that won’t let you down. The design must be inline with the hotels look and it’s values, this will put across a positive and true first impression of what is on offer. A design that adapts to any new fashion and possible changes in Internet use, such as touch screens that have become so popular in recent years. An attractive design will captivate the client, encouraging them to stay on our website, but if it is not simple and intuitive, the visit will end there. A user looking for a hotel wants to find what they are looking for quickly. They want to be able to do it from home, or while commuting to work, so the website must be accessible from all mobile devices and have a booking engine that is optimized for mobiles, allowing the user to make their booking in as few steps as possible.
-Good quality and appropriate content, whether images, text, or audio-visuals. We must select good images of the rooms, and other small details like the garden, swimming pool, buffet, desk supplies or amenities, always finding the best light or even adapting the selections to the different seasons or interesting events. A client must be certain of what they are booking, it is important to include details about the hotels services and the advantage of booking the hotel online, without going over the top with unnecessary information, but also providing interesting details, maybe some of the hotels history, or information about different activities that clients can enjoy in the hotel or the surrounding area.
– Make a website, that directs traffic (paid, organic or earned) to the booking engine in order to complete the transaction, part of the marketing strategy. It must be SEO friendly to be visible in all the search engines, especially in the all-powerful Google with its changing algorithm, maybe using HTML5 and not Flash. The position on Google depends on infinity of combined factors and the only way to be on top is to have a good SEO. Having a social network presence as well as blogs and specialised pages will boost the SEO and will help us get our brand out there, reaching potential clients through opinions and/or adverts that allow interaction that is not limited to just their booking requirements.
-The aim of optimization for booking conversion is to make direct bookings easy for the visitor, we can then entice them with good rates and other loyalty incentives, free breakfast, upgrades, late checkout, or discounts applied to services or local attractions.
These are just some of the proposals that can improve a hotel’s website and increase traffic that will result in direct bookings. Various disciplines and tools work together in improving the direct channel sales, such as web development, marketing and revenue management.
Innwise offers a hotel product that can be adapted to all devices, which is fundamental for a good SEO. And, thanks to the perfect combination of CSS3 and HTML5 , used to develop our websites, we can guarantee accessibility standards, making your hotel website stand out from others. Idiso compliments this task with the Idiso Booking Engine Mobile, completely optimised to compete and convert in the mobile world.