Here are 5 of the most common and costly hotel website conversion mistakes hoteliers make and how to avoid them.
For a lot of hotels their website is their main sales channel and capturing leads and generating online sales from your website are two of the most important functions that your website has – don’t undo all your hard work by making these hotel website conversion mistakes. Read more to see if your website has fallen victim to these any of these common design errors and learn how to avoid making them in the first place.
Hotel website conversions mistake #1: Website design that does not inspire trust
In web design, first impressions definitely do count and a trustworthy hotel design plays an important role in improving hotel website conversions. A website needs to be professional looking to convey trust in your visitors – this means a clean and clear navigation, large quality pictures of your hotel (see below), no broken links, large call to action buttons (see below) and good use of white space.
Hotel website conversions mistake #2: No online booking engine
If your website is well optimised and you are driving traffic to your web pages but you don’t have an inbuilt online booking engine (OBE), your visitors have no choice but to either contact you directly by phone or other means or book online via a third party or Online Travel Agent (OTA) website. By installing an OBE, you can control the conversion process and you don’t have to pay commissions to other travel providers selling your accommodation on their own site.
Hotel website conversions mistake #3: Low quality images
For hotel websites, images can virtually make or break your website. They are often the first elements on a web page that a visitor may see. Give your website a fighting chance to improve the website conversion rate by uploading high quality and large images of your hotel facilities. Investing in great photography is money well spent and you can use the images across all your online and offline marketing activities.
Hotel website conversions mistake #4: Chasing trophy keywords
Your SEO strategy ideally should have a blend of what are called ‘broad’ or ‘short tail keywords’ and ‘money’ or ‘long tail keywords’. Travellers using ‘short tail keywords’ are usually still researching their travel while people using ‘long tail keywords’ are at the later stage of the buying cycle and ready to buy now. It is important to optimise your pages for both but if you only focus on trophy keywords, it will take some time to achieve an increase in web traffic and ultimately conversions.
Hotel website conversions mistake #5: No clear call to action
You have done the hard work in optimising your website and driving quality traffic to your site but don’t let yourself and your customers down by not providing a clear call to action (CTA)*. You need to tell your customers what you want them to do; this may be downloading a menu, filling out a contact form for a wedding planner or booking your hotel via your OBE. You can draw the user’s attention to Call To Actions by:
- vary/increase the size of the CTA buttons relative to other elements on the page will signify its importance
- use strategic placement of the CTA such as the top section of a web page
- use contrasting colours versus surrounding elements such as the background colour
- use whitespace to distinguish the CTA from other elements on the page
- tell users that CTA to easy eg “Download the trial in seconds”
- tell users what to expect with a CTA eg “Fill in this form and a sales consultant will contact you within two hours”.
For a hotel to remain competitive, they must have a website designed with two clear goals in mind; driving quality traffic to your website that is ready to enquire about or book your hotel and then converting those visitors into sales. Take a look at the Hotel Web Design Packages we have available and speak to one of our consultants at Hotel Website Designers who are specialised in improving hotel website conversions.
* CTA – A term used for elements in a web page that solicit an action from the user.