booknow.pngThe following are the main reasons that we have found that people prefer to book through hotel channels rather than through your website. If you address these common issues you can effectively increase the amount of direct bookings via your hotel website.

Mobile Compatibility

According to Trinity Digital Marketing:

Over 1.2 billion people access the web from their mobile devices. With this in mind, if your site is not compatible with both Smartphones and Tablets, it is likely that you are missing out on a large piece of the pie – that your competitors are eating-up.

Website Prices

There are many hotel websites that actually turn direct website bookings away because the price on their own website is more expensive than advertised on channels, OTAs and GTAs.

This can be due to a number of reasons such as (among others):

a)    the booking engine not being integrated with the channel manager; and

b)   the hotel website only having a “Booking Request Form”.

Consumers expect you to have the right technology on your site because it lends credibility to your website and to your hotel.

Security

Let’s face it, internet users are very savvy these days. Especially when it comes to securing their credit card. If your hotel’s website does not have a security certificate on the booking page, it is likely that savvy internet users will not put their credit card details to place a booking from your website.

Site Quality

Nowadays, your website is like a shopfront. A well designed website can portray the standards and even values of your hotel. This doesn’t being and end with your site’s design. It also extends to site content, such as photos and video. It is a great idea to have a nice site design and to also invest in a quality photographer to take photos of your hotel, rooms, facilities and staff. People like to know what they are getting and who they are getting it from.

Step by Step Process

Many hotel websites don’t tell the consumers how to actually book. This is a fundamental principal of effective e-Commerce.

There are a number of ways you can show your website visitors how to book. For example, you can create a page on your site that explains the booking process (no matter how simple it seems).

Another great way is to have a step by step checkout process. That shows each step in the booking process. For example:

the hotel booking process

Checking your Booking Process

If you want to check the effectiveness of your website’s booking process, ask a young child that you know to make a booking. If the child can book a hotel room from your website, then you know that your booking process is as easy as it should be.