Your website is your online business card for tourists and the better it is, the more visitors it attracts. Apart from being listed on Feel Greece which will popularize your business, there are some useful hints you should take into consideration if you want to get more clients from the internet:
- Working site: Make it sure that all pages, links and menus on your site work. Messages like “Coming soon” or “Under construction”, empty pages or errors are not likely to bring the visitors back.
- Languages: Visitors from abroad may not understand Greek. Translate your site in at least one popular foreign language (English, German) so people can understand what it is about.
- Quality photos: Nice photos are maybe the most important side of your webpage. It is one of the first things visitors are looking for when they open a site – if photos are good, they are prone to continue exploring the site and ask for reservation. Quality photos do not necessarily mean photos made by a professional photographer. Below are some ideas how to make such yourself:
- - external photos: make them in a sunny day (dark photos can make even a fantastic luxury hotel to look dull). If you have swimming pool, garden, barbeque, parking, etc., provide photos of them as well.
- - internal photos: if you have lobby, restaurant, bar, games room, gym or other facilities, take a photo of them.
- - rooms photos: light is very important, too. Take the photos from the entrance so everything in the room/apartment can be seen, then make some shots of different parts of it: the beds, the kitchen, the bathroom, the balcony, the view from the balcony, etc. Restrain from focusing on small details like a vase, a drawer, a towel on the bed and alike. Avoid placing objects which you do not intend to leave in the room after the photos – curtains, bed covers, rose petals, etc. – clients expect to find the room exactly as it is on the photos.
- - area photos: photos of the local village/town where your location is, the region, the beach. It is not a problem to take a few shots of the place where you live in a beautiful sunny day, right?
Provide big size photos on your website. Small images that cannot be enlarged or zoomed are not giving much idea of the image.
- Easy navigation: Make your website easy for use. Visitors should clearly see the menu, the links to the other pages, your contact details, etc.
- Simplicity of words: Everyone agrees that each place/village/beach is unique in its own way but a thousand words glorifying its magnificence are not making it better. Different people are looking for different things. Describe in short the place where your hotel is located, with the most interesting things it is characterized for, nearby famous landmarks or sights a few nice photos are better than any words.
The same is valid for the description of your hotel. Sentences like “this is the place your dreams come true” or “our little heaven on earth is the best place for your holiday” are quite subjective instead of writing this, let your customers feel it during their stay. Too much text on your website is boring and tedious for the visitors. Shorter texts enjoy more attention.
- Details: Be specific when you provide information about facilities. Does the fully equipped kitchen have oven or just electric rings? Is there a coffee machine or just a kettle? If you provide towels and personal hygiene products for the bathroom, mention this. Make sure that facilities which can be seen on the photos are listed in the description.
- Prices: Hotels with visible prices attract more attention from tourists. Example: if a tourist is looking for accommodation for not more than 40 euro per night, and your rooms start from 70 euro, the visible prices on your site will save both parties unnecessary correspondence.
Keep your prices updated and publish special offers for early bookings, packages, discounts for groups or longer stay, etc.
- Maps: Many hotels descriptions start like this: “We are in a central position of the village” It is ok, but in a medium size village it can be any of the 20+ hotels in the center. Provide a map with your exact location (Google Maps, Google earth or GPS coordinates).
- Regular mail check: This is very serious. If you want to get clients from internet, check your mail regularly (at least daily). Keep in mind that when potential clients send you reservation requests, they may have sent such to other hotels as well. If you answer them after a week (or two), it is quite possible that they have already booked elsewhere.
- E-mail replies: Reply to all requests you have received, even if you do not have available rooms for the required period. Even a polite reply saying “Thank you for your request but we have no available rooms for this period/ season/ year” speaks good of you and the potential clients may return with another request for the next season/year. If they do not receive your answer at all, most probably they will never ask you again.