You’ve likely seen the hit TLC series ‘What Not to Wear’ where Stacy and Clinton transform an 80’s enthusiast into a modern fashionista, or morph a lazy sweat-suit lover into a head-turning style icon. The tips aren’t rocket science; in fact, half the battle is usually convincing the candidate that they need a makeover in the first place. Here are 4 steps you can take to apply makeover principles to your hotel’s mobile website, and emerge from your marketing cocoon as a merchandising butterfly.
1. Acceptance is the First Step
Much like the contestants who unknowingly commit fashion faux pas on the show, some hoteliers don’t realize they’re in need of a mobile makeover. Others might recognize they have a problem, yet are reluctant to part with their beloved scrunchies and neon leggings. Similar to fashion trends that come and go, website technology constantly progresses and consumers become more sophisticated. This evolution demands that hotel marketers keep current and on trend with the latest in mobile platforms.
2. Find a Style Guru You Trust
There are many components that make up a polished mobile site, and you may or may not be hitting the mark in all categories. Just like the fashion criminals on What Not to Wear, who get help from Stacy and Clinton, it’s important to consult with an expert to review best practices for your mobile sites (both smartphone and tablet) and then implement improvements as needed. One of the benefits of being a VBrochure client is access to a dedicated Customer Success Representative, who’ll provide you with guidance on your visual presentation across all platforms, including mobile.
3. Accessorize with Panache
Once you’ve identified the elements of your mobile site that need attention, put your plan into immediate action. Remember, in today’s world, guests enter your “virtual” front door, long before they step foot in your lobby, so ensure their first impression is a good one. Data shows that guest rooms are viewed 2x more than the second most viewed category restaurants (VFM Leonardo, 2013). Include high definition multi-media galleries, along with compelling descriptions to take full advantage of the device real estate and really showcase your hotel to shopping consumers.
4. Make it Work
Functional style is key. Fashionistas make their look work by dressing to suit their body type, and hotels should do the same. It’s important to optimize your mobile site and provide shoppers with ease of navigation, mapping, click to call capability and importantly, give them visual insight into the anticipated experience, all of which will make it easy for them to choose you when the time is right.
So whether it’s your lack of fashion sense or outdated mobile site, 2013 is not the time to be falling behind the trend. Over 27% of travel shopping traffic is coming from mobile consumers (tnooz) so this is clearly an important consideration for every hotel marketer. Here’s a property that’s gets mobile, Sandy Haven Resort in Jamaica. Their presentation of large photos throughout their easy to navigate mobile site for both smartphone and tablets provide shoppers with an ideal “on the go” experience.
For detailed steps on how you can be just as fashionably mobile as Sandy Haven, check out our guide: Six Critical Mobile Optimization Tactics Every Hotelier Should Know.