Mobile hotel bookings are beyond being a trend. It’s today’s standard user behavior, and you need to optimize your hotel booking page and hotel website for mobile. Even one step further: a mobile-first approach can be a good idea.
Why is mobile booking important?
Mobile users are ruling the hospitality industry. Here are some reasons to put your focus on mobile to boost your hotel bookings.
People book on mobile devices.
To be more specific, Google says that 83% of mobile business travelers have booked travel after doing research on their smartphones in 2017. Since then, this number has increased, no doubt, even though it’s hard to get an exact number.
Therefore, the hotels are supposed to adapt to the target audience’s behavior and turn their faces to the mobile more than ever.
OTAs are on mobile, too.
If your target is to increase your direct bookings, you need to communicate with your potential guests before OTAs. Well, keeping this in mind, we need to tell you that OTAs are already on mobile.
So you need to be robust and attractive on mobile so that people will not leave your page to book your room with a third party. Make sure that your mobile booking page is as straightforward as OTAs.
Google favors mobile.
Most optimization efforts target Google’s algorithms, and Google officially rewards mobile-friendly websites while listing the search results. They said:
“Starting April 21 , we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will significantly impact our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high-quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”
That’s why hotels have an obligation to create responsive websites and even websites designed with a mobile-focused approach.
If you agree that these three reasons are enough to take action, let’s talk about how to improve your mobile friendliness.
How to increase mobile bookings?
Here are some simple but beneficial ways to increase your direct bookings from mobile.
1. Adopt a ‘mobile-first’ mind
The world is getting mobile. So should you.
Mobile-first means considering the mobile devices as your target audience's principal devices. It has been a catchword for success in almost all industries. In practice, it indicates that the companies design a mobile website and then adapt this design to a desktop website.
2. Speed up the loading time
The king of search engines, aka Google, prioritizes a good user experience for its own users; and, as a result, chooses high-speed pages to list on SERPs. When people are searching online, they may get distracted easily. So, when your website is loading fast, you will manage to keep them focused on their search.
There are many technical ways to accelerate the loading time. However, building a light and simple website while starting is always beneficial.
3. Stay updated with the trends
The user behavior, Google algorithms, and technological possibilities are constantly changing. Therefore, mobile-friendliness requires you to follow the latest trends and update your mobile website when needed.
An old-fashioned website may show your hotel as old-fashioned as well, even if you are super todayish.
4. Create a simple experience
People love simplicity. Even though the brands sometimes try to push all the buttons on their websites, that’s not a good idea. Your website needs to lead the visitor through the sales funnel so that they can arrive at the end of it, which is the purchase.
In a nutshell, a simple hotel website can give your message quickly before the visitor gets distracted. Therefore, it helps you increase direct bookings. When there are
- many buttons and call-to-actions,
- many animated visuals or
- sections with functions, the visitor may get lost and leave the website overwhelmedly.
Another benefit of a simple website is the increased loading speed. We have already mentioned this before. Also, a simple website will adapt to different screen sizes, and you will prevent misaligned content effortlessly.
5. Guide your visitors throughout your website
People visit your website to learn more about your hotel or even book a stay. So you need to provide them with the smoothest experience ever to help them get what they want.
There are basic features every hotel website needs. For example, you need
- to list your rooms and describe them clearly.
- to build a secure and straightforward booking process.
- to enable easy navigation between pages.
Make sure that people can quickly see the location, prices, amenities, and other helpful information. Then, use the right filters to help them find the most suitable options and add a search bar that’s seen clearly.
6. Secure and easy booking process
Online security is a big concern of many users. They will choose to move forward through a trustworthy site if your booking process doesn’t give them trust. So let them know how you keep their information safe.
Also, your potential guests won’t be eager to share much personal information online. There are two reasons for this:
- It doesn’t sound secure,
- It takes time to fill all these not-so-necessary fields.
If you seek ways to attract more direct booking from your mobile website, pay attention to your booking process immensely.
7. Create content strategically
Each hotel has its own attractive features. Determine what makes you special among your competitors and show them clearly on your pages. Certain parts of the screen are more eye-catching on mobile devices. For example, people will naturally look at the center or the top of the screen before the other parts. Therefore, place your most attractive information in these parts while designing your pages.
Also, we recommend you know your target audience in detail. This knowledge will let you know how to approach them. Your photos and web copy will be more customized in this way, which means they will be more attractive to a specific audience.
Improve your hotel marketing plan with these tips.
8. Show your prices clearly
More than half of the users abandon the page if the prices change at the last step. It shakes the confidence of your visitors. Then, it’s hard to change their mind.
So play your cards honestly at the beginning and show the final prices even before starting the booking process. Final prices include tax and other additional costs you’ll ask your guests to pay.
9. Optimize your content
As mobile devices are small, you will need to use the space economically to make sure that the whole thing is visible. Accordingly, your titles should have 60 characters maximum and your meta descriptions up to 160 characters. Google will not cut them to fit the screen when you follow these SEO rules.
Also, if you share images with text, you have to be sure that the text is readable on small screens. Test them before publishing.
10. Educate yourself about the latest tech
The technology is unstoppable. Probably, you’re already aware of this. When it comes to mobile websites and the handy tools you can use on your website are also changing constantly. You can always find new digital products that will support your communication with your audience.
Follow the latest development or work with a hotel marketing agency that will inform you when a new tool is suitable for you.
11. Offer various channels to contact you
Before booking, people may need to learn more about you. They may have a specific question that’s not stated on your website. It’s an excellent opportunity to build a relationship with your potential guests.
People prefer different ways to contact. Therefore, offer them options so that they can choose their favorite. For example, you can add WhatsApp, Messenger, and direct call buttons for instant communication. It’s a handy idea to take advantage of chatbots. However, make sure that your visitors can communicate with a human before they get frustrated.
12. Optimize your emails for mobile
Emailing is one of the leading marketing methods, and when you’re good at it, you will get bookings through your regular emails. The challenge is the changing screen sizes. So you will need to optimize your content to seem properly on all of them.
Instead of long and complicated emails, choose simple designs with clear messages. For example, deliver the information in the email body and add a call to action with a link to your booking page.
The power of mobile is snowballing in the hospitality industry. To grow your business with its power, you need to effectively represent your hotel on mobile.
Here are the top practices that will help you be more mobile-friendly according to our experience and knowledge in the industry.
These tips will help you increase your bookings.
- Adopt a ‘mobile-first’ mind
- Speed up the loading time
- Stay updated with the trends
- Create a simple experience
- Guide your visitors throughout your website
- Secure and easy booking process
- Create content strategically
- Show your prices clearly
- Optimize your content
- Educate yourself about the latest tech
- Offer various channels to contact you
- Optimize your emails for mobile
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