COVID still has a significant impact on the travel and hospitality industry as a whole. And as result, we see travellers change what, where and when they choose to book. It is no secret that people now demand more bang for their buck.
According to Booking.com research, 55% of more than 20,000 travellers interviewed said that they are actively hunting down specials and savings for their next trip. Studies also show that potential guests are looking for these specials online, and they prefer to book directly with the property.
Because these changing trends are important to the owners of accommodation businesses, they matter a lot to NightsBridge too.
Offer guests what they want and make it easier for them to book.
Sounds simple in theory, right? But in practice, you might need a little help to join the dots in the guest’s journey from looking to booking. In previous posts, we have discussed how to plan your specials and packages by putting yourself in the shoes of your ideal target market. We’ve also highlighted some of the effective ways that you can promote these offers through social media, email newsletters and on your website (find tips and tricks on doing that here).
All that’s left now is to convert the interest you’ve created into direct bookings through your booking form.
Use ‘straight-to-the-rate’ links to drive direct bookings.
One of the main secrets to special offer success is eliminating ‘friction’ from the booking process. Travellers may be motivated to book your specials, but sending them to a landing page filled with other offers, or to a page where they have to enter data from scratch is no longer good enough. If there are too many hurdles between them and their goal they may get frustrated and move on.
One simple, yet powerful feature on the NightsBridge booking form is designed to help take guests straight to the special offer the property wants them to see. Each special that is set up in the system has its own unique one-click booking form URL. This link opens directly on the available room types and offers details of the special in question, increasing the chances of the booking being made.
Straight-to-the-rate booking links have added advantages.
- A single click to get the information needed improves the guest experience and eliminates any frustration around re-doing steps in the process.
- The conversion success on a dedicated booking engine (or ‘deep link’ as it’s also known) is shown to be much higher than on any regular link.
- You can target your marketing efforts at a group by using the specific website address for an offer. (For example, a school holiday special only promoted to families.)
- The URL can be used as a call to action in marketing emails, behind buttons on your website or direct link from your social media platforms.
The straight-to-the-rate booking links are just another way NightsBridge helps to increase booking conversion while keeping the guest experience in mind.