With endless choices, reaching out to a guest seems more challenging than ever before.
Many guests experienced inconveniences first-hand with online travel agencies due to the mass cancellations as the pandemic was beginning. Simultaneously, solving the same issue directly with hoteliers and vacation rentals left a much better impression. The guests will return.
That is why the website remains a reliable sales channel.
According to research conducted by Expedia, 78% of respondents enjoyed traveling more than expected at the time of the pandemic, and 44% of respondents will travel more in 2021 than during 2020.
Website is always a good idea.
It reduces the commission share to third parties.
During the post-pandemic period, the direct sales channel will be (and remain) crucial.
Clear calls to action
To encourage guests to book directly, make sure a Book Now button is easily visible and accessible.
It’s a good idea to include clear and visible calls to action that guide the guest through the booking process.
To speed up the booking process, speeding up the website itself will help.
Many websites are slow due to the HTTP requests, image sizes or caching. Improving these functionalities will direct the guest’s attention solely to the reservation and its benefits.
Write blogs that will vividly, by combining text and images, show guests what kind of stay awaits them and activities to do and see nearby.
This content is easy to fit into the newsletter, informing the guests and reminding them of the leisure you offer.
Photographs and visual content
A few mini photos of the accommodation units and amenities you offer will not convince anyone to book.
High-quality photos showing off your property and details are a better alternative.
Photographs build certain expectations and create the grounds for a positive guest experience. Therefore you should also use pictures in your IBE. An appealing image of available rooms will excite your guests to travel and make it easier for them to choose the preferred room.
Reviews and awards
Highlight the positive reviews of previous guests.
Using email or social media, invite guests to share feedback and impressions that you will use as website content.
Show the awards and certificates of excellence that your apartment, hostel, hotel or campground has to convince potential guests to offer quality.
In general, the home page is the beginning of the booking process. Your website content should intrigue and interest doubtful guests.
Landing pages are – destinations, a place where you want your potential guests to end up. Landing pages have a purpose – to promote the desired action, usually are focused on one topic/offer and do not have to be a permanent part of the website.
These pages are an excellent solution for promoting different packages and special offers.
Payment procedures and personal data safety
Credit card information request lacking the security impression will easily discourage a potential guest.
Similarly, the trusted payment process is one of the most critical elements of a quality booking process.
Rentlio Booking Engine allows setting up two booking payment systems. Credit card data are highly secured, with PIN for authorized access. This way, only a particular person can access credit card information, which equally protects guests and yourself.
Ensure your booking process works seamlessly across both mobiles and tablets to engage with as many people as possible.
Travellers and potential guests treat the mobile search and booking process as a priority and reflection of the service quality.
Find how to use mobile technology for more successful property management in our article in the link.
Google prioritizes mobile optimization as well.
The tech giant has predicted a growing trend in mobile as smartphone use and voice search advances. It also led to developing a mobile-first index that prefers quick loading and well-designed mobile websites filled with relevant content.
Therefore, customize the desktop version of your website to mobile devices and leave the same content on both versions—check website compatibility to mobile view here. 🤓
These are just some of the situations your potential guests will encounter if your website is not optimized for mobile use:
- small text that is difficult to read and forces you to zoom in;
- large images that load slowly;
- tiny links that are hard to click;
- pages that do not fit the screen.
Integrate booking engine to your website.
The quality booking engine should allow guests to complete the booking in just a few clicks. It should also be optimized for all kinds of devices.
Booking Engine should present an overview of amenities and offers clearly and shortly. The same goes for discounts – everyone is always on the lookout for the best deal.
Offering exclusive discounts will give travellers more reason to book directly through your website and helps increase online sales.
Online booking has become a leading booking source for hoteliers and vacation rentals.
Here are a few segments that should be available when using the booking engine:
- analytics – data and reports for planning future sales and marketing activities;
- flexible and straightforward price change – price and availability changes with PMS and channel manager;
- multiple price lists – the possibility of different price lists;
- billing – secure payments.
The responsive, mobile-friendly design of Rentlio Booking Engine integrates easily with your website and allows you to receive reservations directly. Keep track of your online bookings with statistics, and save time and own your guest experience.
It is simple and links to a property management system providing the data regarding available accommodation units.
The booking engine will allow your potential guests to select dates, accommodation type and payment method. With automated confirmation email in real-time, a booking engine will make for a seamless booking experience.
Like we said, a win-win combination. 🏆
The website is necessary.
It shouldn’t have the role of a brochure that shows your beautifully decorated accommodation – be it an apartment, hostel, hotel or camp.
It should actively participate in the booking process.
Your website should be a reflection of flexibility to new situations. It should provide destination information, transparent booking and cancellation conditions, direct booking benefits and personalized offers. Justify guests’ confidence with credibility and a fast, simple and secure booking process – like OTA’s.
It is precisely the kind of booking process your website should offer.