5 Website Essentials For Bed and Breakfasts
Whether you run a hotel, camping ground, or a BandB, tourism marketing can be a challenge. This is especially true if you’re used to relying on more traditional methods of tourism marketing, like pamphlets or print advertisements. In the digital age, consumers rely on travel and tourism websites to tell them everything they need to know about where they should book their stay.
To succeed in a saturated marketplace, your bed and breakfast website needs to entice visitors and convince them that their time and money will be best spent at your unique establishment. After all, you provide a personal experience for your guests, filled with charm and hospitality; your BandB website needs to reflect that. But it also needs to provide all the ease visitors get when they visit the website of a large hotel chain. Achieving that balance can be tricky, but if your website has the following five components, you’ll be in good shape to compete with anyone in your industry.
- Ability to book online
Many guests are looking for a sense of nostalgia when they stay at a BandB. However, that does not mean they want to be forced to book in an old fashioned way. Offering the option to view your availability and to reserve their room online will go a long way in capturing those customers. Of course, you can offer other options (like calling or sending an email), but you should make reservations as easy as possible. Otherwise, you’re likely to miss out on a lot of potential bookings.
- Clear rates and amenities
Hotels and comparison sites are very transparent about their rates, so you should be, too. Don’t make your visitors go hunting for this information. While some BandBs are pricey, others represent a more attractive alternative, financially, for customers. They’ll want to compare these rates, so by not having them out in the open, they may not even want to stay at your establishment. Be sure to mention perks like included meals, on-site parking, free WiFi, or area discounts.
By and large, consumers want to know what they’re getting into. If your BandB doesn’t have reviews on your own site or on review sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor, potential visitors may neglect to make a booking. Testimonials and unsolicited reviews will increase your brand integrity and will make travelers feel more confident about staying with you. Because they’re taking a chance by not staying at a hotel chain, you need to alleviate any concerns they might have.
- Integration with Social Media
Along the same lines, your tourism marketing efforts should include having active social media accounts. Facebook has become a great source for reviews, so establish your page and post regularly. You can even invite your guests to “like” your page or share a review. Instagram and Twitter can be great for interacting with guests, and embrace the apps for Yelp and Foursquare, too. Posting frequently will add to your BandB’s overall credibility and will provide new ways to connect with your customers.
- Fantastic Photos
Not only do you need your BandB to sound enticing, but you need to provide awesome visuals to give visitors a taste of what they’ll experience. Great website design for bed and breakfasts should include professional, high-quality photos that will instantly make guests want to book. Don’t cut corners here; bad photos will be an instant turn-off for guests, and misleading photos will lead to unhappy customers. Make sure these photos are accurate and make your BandB look its very best.
Have you discovered other tourism marketing must-haves for your site? Let us know in the comments!