It isn’t just your service that determines how many guests return to your hotel. When monitored and optimised correctly, your website can keep guests coming back year after year.
In order to do this, you will need to measure your hotel website’s performance effectively. In this straightforward guide, we will share which metrics you need to focus on and which techniques you should be using.
How good is your hotel's website at getting people to book directly? By learning more about how users convert on your website, you can see how many sessions it usually takes to turn a user into a booking.
You can set conversion steps and measure your Goal Conversion Rate with Google Analytics. This means that you could set certain buttons or calls-to-action on your website as sales goals, giving you a clear goal to work towards and helping you to monitor progress more easily. However, knowing about conversions on your website is not the only useful data.
By examining your audience demographic, you can create more tailored marketing campaigns for email subscribers and improve your remarketing and social campaigns. Some metrics you should look for include:
This can be found in Google Analytics. Knowing where your audience is located can influence your decision in terms of service offering, marketing strategy, and website content. This is particularly useful for hotels, as they operate in a specific location.
For example, if 70% of your audience views your site from a tablet, ensuring that your site is correctly optimised for tablet users is vital. You could even start making website content with tablet users in mind.
Also found in Google Analytics, you have full visibility over what percentage of your audience falls into these categories, allowing you to create more tailored campaigns and to understand your demographic better.
Should you create versions of your website in other languages? If a significant portion of your audience speaks another language, then it could be something worth considering.
Have you ever wondered how many of your direct bookings come from new users versus returning users? This is a useful audience metric that can help you determine what's working and how successful your website is at getting your guests to return.
In particular, determining how many of your direct bookings come from the same, returning users will go a long way towards determining the average Lifetime Value of customers.
A customer’s Lifetime Value (LTV) refers to the total amount of money you make from that customer over their lifetime.
Meanwhile, the Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) describes the full sum of money that was required to encourage that same customer to make their initial purchase. This will include any advertising, website hosting and man hours required before the guest first stays with you.
By increasing the LTV of your customers and decreasing the CAC, you can maximise your profits and return on investment (ROI). This is known as the LTV/CAC ratio, and your goal should be to maximise it.
By understanding how many direct website bookings come from these returning guests and who these returning guests are, you can further understand your target demographic, helping you to answer those vital questions: "What do they have in common, and more importantly, why do they keep coming back?"
Did you know that searches for local information make up 46% of all Google searches?
Optimising your hotel website design and content for local SEO is essential, both for ensuring that your returning users keep returning to your hotel (increasing their LTV) and for increasing the number of new users on your site and new hotel guests.
One fantastic way to do this is by creating content for your site that focuses on local events, hotspots and attractions.
Simple “Best places to eat in (town name)” or “Things to do at (festival name) festival” can go a long way towards establishing your site as a local authority. By creating content on your site for your local area, you can help your hotel to rank on the 1st page of Google when users search for local places or events.
For example, suppose your hotel is based in Edinburgh and you have optimised your hotel site with local SEO. In that case, your hotel will likely appear in searches for “Edinburgh things to do” or “Edinburgh restaurants”, etc. This is extremely useful, as those looking to visit Edinburgh will be taken directly to your site and will likely stay with you.
Additionally, you can invite your target demographic to your booking page without ever leaving your site and without the need for advertising elsewhere. And just like that, your CAC has lowered.
To further improve your site’s local SEO, making reviews a focus for your hotel business is a must.
Word of mouth travels fast, and so do online reviews.
For most consumers, especially those at the browsing stage, reviews can make or break a company’s chance of converting the user. Often, this happens before the user has even landed on the company website.
In the travel industry, roughly 80% of tourists will prioritise hotels with a higher review rating (where there is no significant price distinction).
One way to make your hotel website stand out and keep rooms full is by getting an impressive review rating. To do this, offering quality service is important, but offering guests who are checking out a feedback form is essential. The feedback form will help you distinguish the happy guests from the unhappy ones. In doing so, you can then encourage the happy guests to leave you a public review, while also getting the opportunity to rectify any issues that the unhappy guests may have before leaving a negative review.
Ensure you respond to all reviews, even the negative ones. A negative review will hurt your business’s overall rating, but by responding calmly, you can leave a positive impression on any future users reading your reviews.
As a bonus tip, making the most of your hotel’s positive reviews by repurposing them as social content will help you bring even more users to your site, further bolstering your website’s performance while building brand trust.