2020 has been referred to as the year so momentous they named it twice! It is definitely a year that we will never forget, however not for reasons that were warmly welcomed or embraced. Every single person has a story to tell, some tragic and some hopeful, and despite this ‘new normal’ an incredible wave of resilience has brought about new trends and new beginnings that are reshaping the hospitality industry. With that in mind here are 5 effective strategies to maximise bookings and be on top of your game this year.
If you can’t easily find your business online then how can anyone else?!
1. Advertise and Optimize Your Website
If you haven’t already met SEO it might be time to introduce yourself. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which in layman’s terms increases the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results. Your ultimate goal is to be on the first page of Google, Yahoo or Bing because this will bring you more website visits. This kind of traffic is called organic traffic. If you can’t easily find your business online then how can anyone else?! And let’s not forget SEM (Search Engine Marketing). The main difference between SEM and SEO is that SEM usually includes paid search and pay-per-click (PPC) ads and SEO is an organic strategy. Got that? Ok let’s move on to our second point.
2. Keep Your Website Simple to Make it Sparkle
Think of your website as the mirror to your business; are you reflecting it the way that you want it to be seen? Many hoteliers are not giving this the attention that it deserves, and might have got a bit slack in an area that is crucial for direct bookings. Consider your fonts and colours very carefully and remember that attention to detail is key. To give you the help you need Sirvoy is soon to release a free (yes free, you did hear that right!), easy to use, website builder for pro account users which will help bring out the web designer in you! Keep an eye out for our new releases and get ready to build the website of your dreams.
3. Remarket Before They Reassess
Abandonment rates for hotel booking engines currently sits at a staggering 84.63%, indicating that at least three out of four people start the booking process yet for whatever reason (a crying baby, the postman or a better deal) they get distracted and don’t finish what they started. However, this statistic should not make you lose hope of getting more direct bookings. According to Global Search Marketing, remarketing is a clever strategy that drives more sales from those that have visited your website but did not make a purchase or direct contact. It works through targeting pay per click ads that effectively follow the user around the web as they browse other websites. When a customer visits your site they are tagged with a special cookie allowing you to advertise to them online. Why not try Google Ads or take more advantage of advertising your business using social platforms including Facebook and Instagram. Let’s look into that more next.
4. Take Advantage of Social Media
Whether we’re tech-savvy or not we simply cannot hide from the fact that social media is going nowhere. When an online presence is embraced it can enhance and boost any business. Now you’ve made your website gorgeous, how is your social media looking? People spend hours scrolling through posts and pictures, so make sure you stand out. Be ready to keep up with the pace and implement a marketing strategy that works for you. No social media network is the same and each can serve a different purpose but it’s safe to say Facebook and Instagram dominate so it’s worth taking advantage of these platforms to boost any marketing strategy.
5. Choose the Right Channel Manager for More Bookings With Less Effort!
Around 50% of hoteliers don’t use a Channel Manager, costing them time and money as inventory and availability needs manually updating across the channels. A channel manager allows hotels to connect to hundreds of online distribution channels in real-time allowing the hotel to boost visibility with almost no risk of being overbooked. Choosing the right Channel Manager can be a daunting process considering how many are available online, for this reason, it might be worth taking a look at one of our previous blogs, ‘How to Choose the Right Channel Manager for Your Business.’ Also, consider it vital to select any booking partner wisely as this can directly impact your guest’s experience in either a positive or negative way. Aim to make it an inspiring experience for everyone!