There’re many ways to generate traffic to our website, but they will be of little use if we cannot deliver what the user is looking for. To maintain these visits, we must make sure that they find information that is attractive, relevant, fast, safe and simple, as explained in the following guidelines:
1. SITE LOADING SPEED
Currently, we are used to seeing content in an instant, that is why a blank page for a few seconds could be enough cause for a user to decide to search elsewhere. It is not a secret that now loading speed is one of the most important factors when talking about session abandonment, and one of the factors that Google considers now for the positioning of the site, therefore, it must be one of our focuses if we want to maintain effective visits on our website. For this we have detected actions that will help us improve speed, the main ones are:
- Reduction of the weight of the images: the cover photos should not exceed 300 KB and the rest of the images on the site should weigh around 100 KB each, not much more. This also applies to the weight of logos, icons and graphic resources that we usually put aside.
- Reduction of the size of the upper half of the pages: since it is the first thing the user sees, it must be the first thing to load. What Google recommends, in this case, is to improve the HTML structure to prioritize the important content and reduce the amount of data that is loaded.
- Simpler, better: let’s teach only what is truly important. Saturating a site with pages, widgets and information not only increases loading times but also shows content that the user does not need. In the end, the user will leave without having found what he was looking for and with images in the head that were not relevant.
2. MULTIMEDIA CONTENT
Selling experiences is the trend and the best way to do it is through images. Invest in high resolution multimedia content is essential in the current digital world, and much more in the hotel market, because the only thing that shows us in advance, if the comfort and experience we seek is in this hotel, is the material of photos and videos they have, in addition to opinions.
- Virtual tours or 3D tours: It’s becoming increasingly common to see tours instead of photo galleries. The reason is that the user can have a more complete view of the space, and we would say that less subjective. Allowing users to know the rooms and common spaces of the hotel as if they were already there could be the key point for them to decide to book.
- High resolution photos: If we want to offer rest and relaxation, that is what the photos should reflect. It is necessary to emphasize then the spaces that offer this experience and to reduce photos of those that do not reflect it. It is also much more effective to have 15 pictures of excellent quality that highlight the important areas of the hotel, to have 40 photos in which you know each corner, but you don’t find value.
3. MOBILE VERSION
Google announced more than a year ago that it will give more relevance to the mobile version for indexing a site. It means that it’s not enough that our hotel has a responsive website, but it should have a version developed only for mobile devices. There are two factors that support this new Google requirement:
- The loading speed: Google is giving an advantage to the light mobile versions, and penalizing those that do not, because it knows that this impacts on the user experience. It is much easier to reduce the loading time of a page if its content is simplified, so in this case, it is essential that we should have a site made and optimized for mobile.
- The user experience: Our interaction with the web from a laptop is not the same as from a mobile, and it is this interaction that will create the need to simplify access to pages, to opt for intuitive resources such as icons, to omit information unnecessarily, all with the aim of allowing us to find what we need in a fast, simple, attractive and without invasive content. The mobile versions are surpassing the visits of the desktop versions; therefore, they have become one of the main sales channels and this behaviour tends to increase.
4. SECURE ENVIRONMENT: HTTPS
A few months ago, Google announced that it would start showing the non-secure site warning for those domains that did not have a security certificate or https, so installing https has gone from being an option and has become a mandatory point for any website, since it evidently impacts the user’s experience and, consequently, the number of visits and website conversion.