When people are looking to book a stay at a hotel, they’ll typically visit the website first to see the hotel itself, and will base their decision on more than just price and availability. People who end up on your site but that haven’t committed to a purchase yet are considered leads. Your goal as a business is to transform these leads into converted customers. To improve your conversion rates, you’ll need more than a good site. You need content marketing, advertising and other vital marketing strategies working together to contribute to an increased booking rate. So how can you tell if your website is converting people into paying guests? Here’s an explanation of what a conversion rate is and how to calculate yours, so you can see if you’re meeting your targets or if you need to improve your efforts.
Hotel Conversion Rates
How do you utilise your website as a single entity to increase your conversion rate? Yes, other marketing tools should be used, but considering that most hotel bookings are made online, your website should be your last stop for leads before they’re converted to paying customers. It should become a powerful tool on its own which will save you time and money, allowing guests to book online instead of in person or over the phone. Booking through your website should be a smooth and streamlined process, without any delays in page loading times or confusing and complicated forms to fill in.
Consider the metrics of a successful website. Are you tracking sessions, visitor numbers and views? The numbers might be impressive, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that your success is being represented correctly.
If your site is visited by 1000 people every month, and only converts one per cent of them, would you prefer to double the users or double your conversion rate? The outcome of each would be the same, but it would cost more to get double the users through your marketing campaigns. Therefore, in the long-term, doubling your conversion rate is better because it uses fewer resources and earns you more profit. You’re also getting a better value out of the existing traffic, and a better ROI on future marketing efforts.
Don’t spend your time, energy and budget on getting more traffic that might not be converted; instead focus on the traffic you’re already receiving, and aim to convert more of them.
Calculating Your Conversion Rate
There are many branches to the hospitality industry, so it can get confusing as to what conversion looks like. For restaurants, it’s a booked table. For a beauty spa, it will be a spa package purchase. For hotels, it’s simple – it’s a room booking. Here are three tools to track your conversion rate.
1)E-Commerce Tracking Via Google Analytics
Most hotels allow their guests to book rooms via their website booking engine, where you can choose room availability, dates and prices for those dates. Bookings are paid for online. If you use this system, you should install e-commerce tracking software such as Google Analytics. It allows you to see the following:
- Number of rooms booked
- How much profit was earned
- The average of rooms booked per person
- Conversion rates of your website
2) Goal Tracking via Google Analytics
With goal tracking, you aren’t tracking an exchange of money for services but instead leads which can become converted via email marketing or targeted ads that you can feed into campaigns. Goal Tracking allows you to track the following:
- Reservation requests from emails and order forms
- Venue hire requests or queries
- Interest in spa packages or other offerings your hotel might be providing
There’s no exchange of money for services here, but it can track leads which can become converted via email marketing or targeted ads.
3) Tracking Page Versus Site Visits
Tracking different types of visits tells you what your site visitors are looking at. Are they browsing your offers, blog or menu? Once you understand what they’re interested in, you can offer more of it. If they visit your menu, offer discounted dining packages with every stay. If your blog is getting hits, create personalised content to entice them into signing up for email marketing campaigns. It allows you to track the following:
- Tracks visits to your site overall
- Track Visits to a specific page
For hoteliers and others in the hospitality industry, your primary goal is booking rooms in your hotel or accommodation, reserving tables in your restaurants, and filling places in tours or activities you offer at your hotel. Your best bet in increasing your the number of visitors and improving your return of investment is through your website. Remember, your hotel won’t survive if it’s not constantly attracting future customers, and converting them into paying ones.
There are many ways for a hotel to improve their conversion rate of leads visiting their website, and it can be accomplished by creating a digital marketing strategy that includes social media posting, paid advertising, content marketing and email marketing. All of these efforts should lead to your website, which should be seeing your expected number of visiting prospects. If you see the numbers you like but aren’t converting them the way you’d prefer to, there are many tools to use that can track where your marketing funnel is succeeding, and where it isn’t.
Google Analytics on its own has everything you need, from e-commerce tracking and goal tracking, to tracing which web pages are getting more hits than others. Use the information gleaned by this tool to your advantage, and to get your leads what they want. If your audience sees content that’s relevant to them and campaigns with offers that they’re interested in for a rate they can afford, your conversion rates will rise.
It’s not an easy job managing your website when you’re already running a business. It’s why you should think about hiring a CRO expert who is experienced in delivering measurable results. For assistance with this and your digital marketing in general, contact Sandbox for support. Our digital marketing experts will get you where you want to be.