Mobile friendly websites are now considered a standard requirement within the hotel industry, but why stop there? Ensuring your hotel booking system is just as friendly to mobile users is key to ensuring increased online bookings, particularly as browsing becomes an ever more mobile affair. Here are our top tips for checking whether your current system is mobile friendly:
A simple and sensible navigational system is even more imperative when booking on a mobile device than it is on desktop, so keep it clear and straightforward to avoid losing out on your mobile bookings.
Booking System Clearly Displayed
Your hotel guests need to know where to go to book, no matter the device they are using. Checking the appearance of the ‘Booking’ button, as well as its placement on your hotel webpage when on a mobile device, helps reaffirm the ease of booking which your guests can then expect to experience. Make sure your forms are designed with mobile users in mind – thumb size buttons, no superfluous form fields, one click log in and clear calls to action are crucial.
A mobile booking system must be quick to load, or it will lose you lots of mobile bookings. It makes sense that customers would be less likely to part with their cash if they’re unable to even reach the pages they seek, so always have speed at the forefront of your mind while designing your booking engine. Google research shows that page load speed has a huge impact on cart abandonment and bounce and this is perhaps one of the biggest factors in determining exactly how mobile friendly your site is. Consider this data from Google:
“Mobile sites lag behind desktop sites in key engagement metrics such as average time on site, pages per visit, and bounce rate. For retailers, this can be especially costly since 30% of all online shopping purchases now happen on mobile phones. The average U.S. retail mobile site loaded in 6.9 seconds in July 2016, but, according to the most recent data, 40% of consumers will leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load. And 79% of shoppers who are dissatisfied with site performance say they’re less likely to purchase from the same site again.” Source: Think with Google.
A well-branded booking engine helps to inspire trust from your prospective hotel guests, as it indicates a further commitment to the overall user-experience as well as representing a shift away from the homogenous booking engines used by some hotels.
Key Content Is Visible
Whilst simplicity is hugely important when optimising for mobile, it is still as crucial to your mobile users that they can find the information they need as it is for desktop bookers. This means ensuring key content relevant to their booking is visible throughout the booking process, including details of rooms, facilities and locational information which will help make choosing where to stay simpler and more straightforward.
Payment is Secure
Mobile browsers still care about the security of their data, and by being unrestricted to a set browsing location, they place a premium on booking processes which emphasise their data safety as standard. A safety security certificate should be prominently displayed to give peace of mind to wavering potential customers and avoid missing out on bookings via your hotel reservation system