Have you ever wondered why OTAs give you more bookings? Why is the average online hotel booking engine conversion rate below 2% (Source) despite hoteliers spending on marketing and SEO? The answer is clear and simple: OTAs help potential customers with all the relevant information they need when making a reservation.
4 tips to get more hotel bookings from your booking engine
Have you ever wondered why OTAs give you more bookings? Why the average online hotel booking engine the conversion rate is less than 2% (Source) despite hoteliers spending on marketing and SEO?
The answer is clear and simple: OTAs help potential customers with all the relevant information they need when making a reservation. This means that your hotel website does not help convert visitors into customers. So how do you plan to solve this problem? Have you ever tried to optimize its abilities?
If not, let’s see how to get the most out of your online hotel booking engine by adopting 4 simple booking engine hacks for hotels as explained below.
1. Adopt a highly responsive website with a integrated web booking engine
Now that you know that only 2 out of 100 visitors make a hotel reservation through the hotel website, you should strive to have a website with all the information a potential guest would be looking for. You need to ensure real-time visibility of room availability and rates on your website. Your hotel descriptions and images play a major role in this effort and all pages should load in minimal time.
You need to provide them with a seamless booking experience. For your visitors, the booking process shouldn’t be a time-consuming affair. Don’t force them to fill in every detail when booking. It also pays to optimize your website for mobile because today’s customers love to make hotel reservations using their smartphones. Once the reservation is complete, your guest should receive an instant confirmation. This helps them believe that you will honor the reservation.
In short, you need to improve the quality of your website and its user experience.
2. Implement multilingual and multi-currency features
Allow your potential guest to read your website content and get to know you in their own language. You can do this at least for customers in your targeted countries. Let them also see room rates and these details in their currency. This would help you expand your market, instill confidence in your potential customers and ultimately create an advantage over your direct competitors.
3. Set up a virtual tour and promote customer feedback
Allow your website visitors to take a virtual tour of your property. This can be done while they are on your website. It would work well for you if they could explore your property before they even arrive. Remember to promote positive customer reviews to attract and influence the booking decision of potential customers.
4. Offer the “best rate guarantee”
To offer ‘best rate guaranteed’ and the same should be at parity across all your other distribution channels. Additionally, you need to make sure that the rates you offer on your website are competitive enough with the hotels that are your direct competitors. Also, to attract early risers, you need to offer them an up-front purchase rate. For example, you can launch this campaign in October to attract more guests at the end of December – “Book now with us and enjoy 20% off the final bill during your stay between the 25and – 31st Dec”.
Most importantly, say loud and clear that their credit card details will be safe because you have a secure online payment processing gateway in place.
If you plan to drive more direct bookings to stay profitable, you need to important characteristics of a booking engine that you plan to integrate into your brand’s website. Once set up, don’t forget to analyze how your online hotel booking engine works for you. For starters, you can review a cloud-based hotel PMS that comes with a hotel reservation system.
Let us know if you tried any other hacks that worked well for you. We would like to hear from you.
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Authors biography :
Debi Prasad handles corporate communications at Hotelogix. He is a writer by passion and profession. As a journalist, he has also worked with some of India’s leading mainstream newspapers. Contact him at [email protected]
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