The Top 5 Hotel Internet Marketing Secrets That Will Boost Your Bookings
Looking for ways to boost your bookings for your boutique hotel or resort for the new year, even during the low, off-peak or shoulder seasons? These top 5 hotel internet marketing secrets will give you an edge!
Hotel owners are always looking for ways to improve their booking rates. Given that the entire world has migrated online for research and booking hotel reservations, it is crucial that your hotel is following the marketing trends that are the most time and energy efficient.
As an internet marketing expert, hotels ask me all the time, ‘What are the ultimate secrets to get more booking and generate more revenue?”
So, I decided to expose the internet marketing secrets that every boutique hotel and resort must utilize for success. The secrets lay in establishing and maintaining a successful online presence which can be achieved by implementing these top 5 hotel internet marketing tips:
If you own a boutique hotel owner or manager, having a viable marketing plan is not an option – it’s a must, especially in today’s competitive market. Travelers are searching the internet daily to find the perfect travel destination for a family trip, business conference or couples getaway. An action-oriented marketing plan will put you far ahead of your competition, so your hotel gets noticed first, and stands out because of something special about the destination that you’ve showcased.
But how do you put together a viable marketing plan? What does it mean to have a boutique hotel marketing plan? How will that help your business growth and sales?
First and foremost, you can’t ‘do marketing’ without a sound marketing plan. You never know exactly how the year’s bookings will unfold, but having a blueprint all laid out in advance, month by month, step by step, will significantly help you and your team figure out what could and will work, both budget and time-wise.
Secondly, a viable and hands-on marketing strategy will help you in terms of providing your team with specific directives and actions that you will need to perform over time in order to take your business to the next level.
When meeting with your team to craft an ideal marketing plan, first you need to get your priorities straight. What are your main objectives for the year? Or the quarter? What is your focus currently? Figuring out your top goals and getting clear on what you want and identifying which types of digital marketing will get them for you fastest and with the best ROI can be both fun and strategic. Having a master marketing plan will help you actually accelerate ahead with your goals and stick to the plan until you have achieved what you set out to do.
If you’re still asking yourself, do we really need a strategic marketing plan for this year? Remember, a viable boutique hotel marketing plan will help you:
Making sure you’re easily accessible to potential customers is crucial. People rely on the internet 24/7 for making their travel plans, and searching for reputable luxury hotels and resorts is no exception.
Knowing that 57% of travel bookings were made on the internet and there were 148.3 million travel bookings made on the internet last year, having a great website is an absolute requirement to get online bookings for your boutique hotel or resort. What do we mean by great?
Firstly, website design is one of the key elements of a successful online presence. When was the last time you heard of an amazing hotel that didn’t have a website at all? Sure, there are some who still refuse to adapt, but in time everyone will – or else you don’t exist. At least not to your potential customers. And that means you’re missing out a lot.
There’s no question about the direct correlation between hotel bookings and having a well designed and built hotel website. Obviously, not just any website is good enough. Today, websites are more sophisticated than they were a decade or even a few years ago. Every year the advancements and understanding of human psychology in internet marketing help us to understand how to best get bookings through websites.
A high-converting great website has to be:
Visuals are important especially when you’re looking for a place to stay. Everybody wants to feel nice and welcome, so it’s crucial to make sure that you present that to your target audience. That means you should also feature professional photos and videos.
If the visitor is struggling to find their way through your website it means something is not good. Website navigation is crucial when it comes to keeping your online customers interested. Websites with complex navigation systems are sometimes responsible for losing customers.
You should also pay attention to the design of your booking button. The booking button should be visible and easy to use, but on the other hand, not too distracting either.
Today, most online searches come from mobile devices – smartphones or tablets. The percentage of bookings from devices only increases every year. Having a mobile ready website is, again, a must. You may need to adapt your design or content to look amazing and remain easy for searches and bookings by potential customers.
Having a well-built and beautifully designed website is the key to driving more customers your way. This is the foundation of your online marketing strategies. Stunning visuals and branding and built properly so the website loads quickly, is mobile responsive and inviting to convert leads to get room and group bookings
Another crucial strategy when it comes to hospitality marketing is ensuring that your website is visible to potential customers when they’re searching the web – i.e. search engine optimization. What’s the use of having a website if nobody can see it? As people rely on the wide world web more and more, search engines have become more sophisticated when it comes to the way websites are ranked. Search engine ranking is a competitive arena and you really have to step your game up in order to stay on top.
So how do you that?
That requires many different strategies, of which the most relevant one (at least currently) is probably the content. Content is a broad term and it basically includes everything that you put on your site and the way you present it. By updating your site regularly and using the relevant keywords can help you improve your search rankings, which in turn can land you more clients for your unique boutique hotel or resort.
Travelers tend to look for inspiration and motivation in social media channels. Visuals are important when it comes to hotel business, which is why platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest are probably among the most popular ones for engaging the visitors.
It’s no secret that Instagram and Pinterest are top inspiration sites that you must have an engaged stunning presence on. Facebook is the #1 portal for millions of internet users each day, and many potential customers search within the Facebook platform all day long. You want to meet your ideal customers where they are at. Social media networking sites are a treasure trove of potential customers, but you need to know how to reach out to them.
That being said, nurturing your social media presence is simply a must if you want to survive in today’s crowded marketplace.
Google Adwords, Facebook, and Instagram are probably among the most popular platforms for the purposes of hotel website marketing and advertising. Although organic reach is also effective to a certain extent, a large portion of the clients that both big and small hotels get are through paid advertising.
Paid online advertising has become the norm in order to obtain new clients. And not just during the festive seasons, but in general as well. Well-built and well-executed Google or social media promotions and ads are the backbones of any successful modern business.
Adwords ads are the ones that appear when someone uses Google to search for hotel services and uses the keywords your business is associated with. They appear in the upper part of their search results and are marked as ‘sponsored’, meaning they are paid for. These are simply online business ads, that show up at the top of any related search.
Facebook and Instagram ads are similarly displayed to people who are most likely to be interested in your business, based on many factors that you decide upon like their interests, behaviors, and demographics like location or income.
Having a solid online marketing presence is the backbone of any successful business nowadays. Anything less than that and you’re missing out on many potential clients.
Did these tips help you? Drop us a comment and let us know! Or schedule a discovery call to learn how the Experience Experts can help amplify your digital presence.