10 commandments

of a good hotel website

Being found / Search engine optimization

Write extensively about your case, use keywords that your potential customers would search. These keywords are indexed by Google and determines your ranking. Surfers search through phrases such as "restaurant gastronomy Bruges", "hotel market Bruges" or "Knokke-Heist child friendly pancakes". So try to incorporate all the assets in your texts, and preferably by linking to various pages under your website.

Do it with a professional

A website represents your business and should yield. Let building your website to a specialised web design office as Stardekk. They know how to get a high Google-ranking. The continued maintenance and updating can be done itself, however.

Use a CMS (content management system)

Your customer (and also Google) wants to receive up-to-date information, so make sure your website stays updated regularly. Use a CMS ( = Content Management System) like the Website Manager for this.

Some important tips:

  • Showing a Christmas menu in the summer, is out of the question
  • If there aren't any promotions, remove the call-to-action button on your homepage
  • People like to look at pictures, post always professional photos, and as many as possible
  • For hotels, it's recommended to refresh the graphic design each three to four years

You can give someone the responsability for the website and the updates (so you get continuity). Through the website manager you can read the new messages and then publish them.

KISS = Keep it simple, stupid!

Keep it simple! The hot water doesn't need to be reinvented. A website can be very beautiful, but if a customer has to think too much or search too long, you probably lost him. Also people don't want to read much.

A few tips:

  • Keep the navigation simple and clear
  • Place a short summary list of characteristics so that the customer knows quickly what's the page about
  • Then again, the full text is important for Google
  • Nice, large photos are important

Mobile responsive website

Did you know that reservations via a smartphone usually happen before arriving on the same day. Especially between 12pm and 6pm​ and when the client is contained within a radius of 10km, there are mobile reservations.

Mobilebooker offers you the possibility to activate a mobile website on your own hotel or restaurant website, so your hotelguests can book through a mobile booking system. Mobilebooker is linked to Cubilis and retrieves all information about the hotel, the rooms and photos from Cubilis. Mobilebooker can be activated on your own existing hotel website placed under your own domain. When your website is being consulted from a mobile device, this is immediately detected and Mobilebooker will be loaded. If you browse with a PC or laptop, the default website will be shown.

Online reservation

Ensure that customers can book/order directly online. They don't need to call first and it saves you a lot of time, administration and expensive commissions. It must be done over a secure line. Such a system is offered by www.logismanager.com (www.cubilis.com).

Links popularity

Put links to other tourist information, for example links to tourist attractions in the area, to walking and cycling routes and for tourism services. This is a must, especially for catering establishments and guest houses in tourist areas.

Address and locations

Don't forget your contact information. A customer often searches at the website of catering businesses to the address and phone number. Certainly put the address and other information on the homepage and repeat it at the bottom of each following page. Make sure your phone number is user-specified, so that there can be clicked on without adding of numbers (for example area codes).

Professional photos

A customer often has the first contact with your business through your website. So work with a professional photographer, who can place your business with a good exposure and techniques in the spotlight.

Appearance does matter and certainly when booking a hotel room. Expedia analyses the bookings behavior of their customers. It seems that many good pictures deliver more reservations. The more pictures, the higher the conversion.

A few tips:

  • Show pictures of the hotel, give an overview
  • Show all room types as well as the bed options
  • Do not show 'every angle of the room'
  • The thumbnail (small picture) makes the first impression
  • Work with a professional photographer
  • More customer experience through a vitual tour or video
  • Stay up to date, replace your pictures if they're outdated

Think of your audience

In practice, the woman often gives the deciding factor in the choice of a hotel, restaurant or bed & breakfast. Websites that focus on topics such as: child friendliness, hygiene, pictures of the bathroom, plumbing, ... will score better. Women are sensitive to these issues.