Direct accommodation booking, available on the own website of the hotel, is always an advantage compared to bookings through reservation portals.

1. Remove sources of customer friction
It is just not possible to have every customer the perfect customer. We all know that customer friction is any problem that adversely affects a guests experience with your establishment  –  the booking phase is one place you do not want any frustration –  when they go online to book with you a bad experience there will reflect with them as to what the rest of the experience will be like.

It is worth the effort to try and locate your site and do a test booking – go to other sites and see where they are better than you. Streamline the process and simplify. There are many good booking engines out there. Get one that works for your clients.

2. Implement a user-friendly booking engine
The best booking engine will keep the guest onsite and allow them to complete their booking in a few clicks or touches. For example, sites like siteminder the booking button and many others ensures you are setup for a fully-customisable two-step process that makes things uncomplicated for the guest. AND IS MOBILE COMPLIANT

3. Enable social media booking
Social media is an ever-increasing factor for guests finding and booking hotel accommodation online. Hotels can make booking easier for travellers by having a booking engine that can integrate with Facebook. Coupled with a mobile-friendly interface, your potential guests won’t be restricted when booking a stay at your hotel. Facebook and mobile booking is increasing at a rapid rate and it is one area that hoteliers neglect

4. Create a smart and intuitive booking process
Booking companies understand the process of booking, that is what they do and they are good at it. Do not put a custom built booking page in your website. You will loose clientele. The small amount you pay on fees will more than make it worth while.

5. Save offers and extras for after confirmation
Almost 50% of last-minute bookings are made via smartphone so guests want to complete their reservation as quickly as possible. This means you shouldn’t place too many barriers between them and their ability to navigate to the final price. If you wish to offer extras or promotions, one option is to do so in a confirmation email when the guest is more likely to be receptive to communication.

6. Display clear calls-to-action
When visitors see your homepage your ultimate goal is for them to make a booking. To this end, your homepage should be simple with a call-to-action clearly visible and easy to access. Prominently display your availability and ‘Book Now’ button so guests don’t get confused and click away. The last thing you want is a guest who doesn’t book simply because they got lost on your website. Again you need to have a simple and streamlined process.

7. Optimise website functionality
To speed up the booking process, speeding up your hotel website itself will aid this. If you have not got a “HTTPS” website, you must get one today. It is amazing how many clients we see that are still trying to do transactions over an HTTP website. Not only are they more secure, they are more proffessional and faster ironing out these kinks will make your web pages load quicker and keep your guest focused on making a booking. For more information on how to improve website load time, and get fast results contact Addmedia 

Speeding up the online direct booking process can be easily achieved by hotels, all it takes is strong attention to detail and the right technology.

Author: admin