Over the last decade, mobile hotel bookings have definitely brought about a disruption in the hospitality industry. But surprisingly it lags much behind other prominent booking sources, like OTAs etc.
80% of all last minute bookings are done on Mobile devices. As more and more Hoteliers are liberating last minute inventory, it has become very important for Hoteliers to use technology to increase hotel bookings. As bad as 2 out of 5 mobile transactions for hotel bookings(source), are cancelled because of poor user experience. Hoteliers in the U.S lose a great amount of revenue every time a consumer fails to complete a booking via mobile devices.
How to boost hotel direct bookings, is a concern lurking in every hotelier’s mind. Mobile phones are a very strong channel, whose traffic is presently surpassing desktop traffic. This makes it all the more important to focus on mobile bookings in the hotel industry.
Here are 5 ways Hoteliers can overcome the existing issues and increase mobile hotel booking:
1) Make sure your pricing is transparent over mobile devices-
Consider this stat – 53% (source) of the travel bookings are abandoned because the final price of the booking is revealed only at the end of the transaction. This leaves the guest guessing and prompts them to look for better options on other platforms. Seeing the add-ons and taxes together that sum up to an unexpected amount acts like a waiver for most guests. Properties that show a clear and upfront price are 5-7% more likely to get more mobile hotel bookings.
2) Make your reservation forms small and convenient to fill on small screens
Mobile devices come with the strength of easy access and the weakness in form of a small screen. As hoteliers, you need to imagine the actual conditions under which the guest is using a mobile. It could be during a short duration between work hours or during a traffic jam. To increase direct bookings through website, it is wise to be simple and direct without many distractions.
3) Rework your payment game
Web bookings have seen a growth of 24%, while 42% of these can be credited to mobile bookings in the hotel industry. Mobile commerce has created bigger opportunities in the hotel industry. But at the same time, mobile sites that do not offer secure payment processes will lose out on guests. As a hotelier you need to understand the pain points attached to typing credit card details into a small screen. There are digital wallet solutions that allow the user to make payments with just a click.
4) Check the speed of your loading time
An ideal guest scrolls through mobile between his/her busy schedule for a distraction. Your job is to make use of this distraction and push the right information through. Make sure to have only relevant content that drives the guest to take the desired action. It is also very important to check if the images, graphics and videos used are slowing down the process. If you are planning to boost hotel direct bookings, make sure to have shorter loading time before the guest moves out of your website.
5) Make sure to have offers and programs for booking via mobiles-
Every other Hotelier is trying to reach out to the same guest as you. Have an edge over others by having mobile-only offers for your guests. This will ensure that your guests book at the moment in the fear of losing out on a good deal. If you use technology to increase mobile hotel bookings, having the right offers at the right time will impress the guest significantly.
Traffic on mobile has never been better but desktops are still credited for most bookings on the web. Usability on mobile devices can be a problem for both, the guest and the hotelier. These 5 pointers have been designed to fight issues of trust and usability discussed earlier.
Let us know if you have come across any other tips to get your mobile website get the bookings it is capable of.