Direct Bookings - Blog

 

More guests staying at your property means you’re making money.  That seems like pretty straight forward logic, but digging deeper you need to ask yourself “How are these guests actually finding and booking their trip?” With OTAs flooding the market, many properties overwhelmed with seemingly can’t-miss opportunities to generate bookings.

Taking more bookings means additional revenue for your property, right? It may seem that way, but many of these online travel agencies charge commissions up to 25%.  Wouldn’t it make more sense to drive travelers directly to your website where you can avoid these additional fees?

By following these simple tips, you’ll be taking steps in the right direction to drive more bookings directly to your website.

Content

Content is king and should be at the heart of your marketing strategy. It’s important that your brand is publishing quality content online regularly. Not only does this content help your online exposure, it will help convert visitors on your website.

When it comes to creating this content, there is plenty of freedom. Whether you’re publishing a blog, writing on social media, or utilizing a feed for user generated content, it’s critical that you’re pushing out quality content on a regular basis.  Whether you’re publishing daily, weekly, or monthly, just make sure you’re giving travelers something fresh.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that you (or your staff) needs to come up with all of the content on your own. Share relevant content written by others. Partner with other businesses in your town and cross-promote one another. This is extremely helpful when it comes to event promotion in your area.

SEO

As one of the key elements in driving organic traffic to your property website, your SEO strategy is extremely important when it comes to driving direct bookings.  Consistency is key when it comes to your SEO strategy and it absolutely needs to be keyword driven.

SEO may seem like a large task, and it can be if you’re unfamiliar with the practice. Luckily, ResortsandLodges Business Solutions provides website performance, organic traffic and keyword reporting, Google Search Console setup, integration and monitoring, as well as backlink management. Interested in what Business Solutions can do for your business? Contact us today.

Social Media

Communication and interaction with potential travelers on social media can be a driving force for converting guests. Surveys have found that 83% of travelers are inspired to take a trip after seeing something on social media, meaning a strong presence can directly lead to bookings.

With so many social media outlets in existence, it’s important to keep in mind that you do not have to spread yourself across all of them. Do some research, see what platforms your target demographic(s) are interacting on and make your presence known. When interacting on these platforms, make sure your profile links directly back to your website, as your influence may lead to a quick booking.

Website

As the storefront to your property, your website needs to be visually appealing and convey the experience travelers will have when they stay with you. Images will sell experiences, and when they’re accompanied by great content, guests will be ready to click the “book now” button.

Keep in mind that during a guest’s time spent on your website, you should be selling experiences to them with every click they make, driving them down the sales funnel and ultimately converting to a booking. Does this sound like your website? If not, reach out to our Web Services team to get your storefront in shape.

Mobile Friendly

If you’re like the rest of the population, your phone is most likely on you, or within a three-foot radius of where you are right now. In fact, you may be reading this blog from your phone! What we’re getting at is the fact that our phones have become an extension of our bodies. Opportunities are endless when our phones are in hand, and it’s important that your website is mobile-friendly as 69% of smartphone users are searching travel ideas from their phones.

The benefits don’t just end there. If your website is not mobile-friendly, be ready to get penalized by Google and move down in search engine ranks.  Avoid this fall from grace become mobile-friendly. Make sure your mobile site has quick loading times, resizing photos, and ensure all software will work on mobile devices.

Deals & Packages

Driving direct bookings can be simplified by offering your guests deals & packages that OTAs aren’t offering. Whether this is a best rate guarantee, seasonal specials or a targeted offer, potential travelers will convert for a deal over going to an OTA.

There’s an added bonus if your advertising on ResortsandLodges.com. You can list your deals & packages right on your landing page, leading guests to your website!

By using these tips, you’ll be able to drive more bookings while keeping your revenue instead of handing it to an OTA in the form of commission.

Questions or comments? Contact us today!

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