If you’re hoping to boost your hotel’s direct bookings, it’s essential to have a well-designed website that presents your hotel in the best light. It’s not enough just to have a website; it needs to be optimised for guests searching online.
In this blog post, we’ll provide 5 top tips to improve your hotel website design and make your hotel stand out and attract direct bookings. From making sure your website looks modern and attractive to creating a seamless user experience, we can help you reach more potential guests and convert them into direct hotel bookings. So let’s get started!
1. Promote your booking direct benefits
You need to make booking directly on your hotel website a “no brainer”. It’s more difficult for the user than booking through third parties like Booking.com and other OTA’s, so you have to give them a compelling reason to jump through hoops on your site to book.
Having the same price as other sites isn’t good enough – you need to incentivise them with exclusive member rates that save loyal guests money on their stay.
Alternatively, you can throw in ‘free’ extras, like room or package upgrades. For example, these can be F&B discounts, exclusive lounge access, or late checkout. You could also link up with local businesses to build experience packages, like a nearby spa or family attraction.
2. Use high-quality visual content
It should go without saying, but quality content is essential to selling your experience online. Stunning photography and video content will really elevate your brand and translate your hotel’s unique selling points (USPs).
Many users will visit your site even if they find your hotel elsewhere to see better content. With this in mind, give them just that, make your hotel stand out. It will excite and inspire the users to convert directly and sets your website apart from the competition.
Good quality photography and videography can also be the tipping point for choosing you over one of your competitors. You’ll also get great content for your hotel’s social media channels, helping you reach a wider audience of potential new guests!
3. Be concise with your key USPs
Don’t beat around the bush – ensure that your best attributes are clearly signposted on your website. Make your hotel’s key USPs clear from the home page and prominent in your content. You need to clearly answer the questions: “Why book this hotel?”, and, “Why book directly through this website?”
Don’t be too frilly or verbose. Is it your location that’s incredible? Do you have the best spa in the area? Are you consistently praised for your service and warm family atmosphere? Whatever it may be, shout about it!
4. Simplify your navigation
We often come across “Frankenstein Websites” – these are websites that just get pages and content bolted on over time. This can often over-complicate the website and make it tricky to navigate, meaning the user struggles to find what they are looking for.
Your website guests are not usually patient, so frustrating them with your website’s UX and UI will encourage the user to bounce and leave your website.
Keep your navigation clear, easy, and straightforward to use. Think about taking the user on a journey rather than bombarding them with multiple elements or buttons, which can be overwhelming.
We’d recommend reviewing your website and sitemap with the goal of simplification. Consider trialling a few user tests, and request that a trial sample try to find information or complete certain key tasks on your hotel website to see where they struggle. It can be a very insightful exercise and invaluable if it can rid your website of any potential pain points for your future customers!
5. Consider the mobile experience
It’s no longer enough to simply have a website that “works” on mobile devices. For the majority of businesses today, most users will view the websites on a mobile device.
With this in mind, it may be poignant to ask the following key questions:
- Is my hotel website designed for mobile users?
- Is the content bite-size?
- Am I utilising mobile navigation best practices?
- Have I thought about how my website photos and videos will be cropped on a mobile?
- Are my Calls to Action easy to see/reach?
- Is my mobile checkout using features like Apple/Android Pay?
- Is my site downloading quickly?
…plus many more – the list goes on!
As you may have gathered from the above, there are many techniques and good practices to consider and implement in order to optimise your website for mobiles and increase the conversion rate from your ever-increasing mobile user share.
To sum it up…
In conclusion, perfecting your hotel web design is key to boosting direct bookings. To lock in these more profitable conversions, you need to make sure your website is optimised for every device, easy to navigate, provides a great user experience and looks great!
If this all seems like too big of a project or you haven’t got the time or tools to undertake a website design in-house, we’re here to help!
Our award-winning team of expert web design and development wizards can build your dream hotel website to make sure you stand out from the competition and bring in more of those all-important direct bookings.
So, if you need a new website or would like to give your current site a boost with a new hotel digital marketing strategy, contact us today to discuss your project!