So you want to launch a hotel website for your business and start receiving online bookings. There are so many decisions to make, but fortunately there are many solutions that can help you achieve your goals. Let’s compare your options:
Hire a Web Agency / Freelancer
- Stand out with a professional looking website (provided that you have picked an experienced web agency)
- Create a personalized appearance around your brand & identity
- Focus on your business, not on technical details. Receive a fully functional and thorough tested website.
- High acquisition cost
- You must have some technical knowledge to maintain and update the content. Usually you will pay extra for Maintenance and Security.
- Booking engine is usually an external service. You will need to keep the information in your website and the booking engine synced all time. It doesn’t feel good to redirect to another page to complete the booking.
- Your website will soon be outdated as new technologies emerge. For example the adoption smartphones issued new requirements of responsive design. On average, every 7-8 years you should redesign it!
Use an online website builder
- Easy to create websites with no technical knowledge. Usually you will find some templates to start.
- Easy to maintain and update content. You will always maintain control.
- Cheaper Acquisition cost. These services are subscription based with no upfront cost. Usually you can keep maintenance cost pretty low.
- Receive updates and new functionality with no extra cost. Your website won’t feel outdated in some years.
- Your website might be generic-looking or “unprofessional”.
- You are limited to the functionality that is provided by your vendor. You cannot implement yourself any missing functionality.
- Square Space (One of the top quality website builders)
- Wix/Hotels (You can find some hotel specific features)
Use a Cloud Hotel Platform
These platforms provide integrated solutions for hoteliers. They provide many services under a single dashboard such as a Website Builder, Booking Engine, CRM (Costumer Management), Marketing Tools etc.
- Create websites that are designed specific for Hotels. You might achieve beautiful results with little effort.
- These platforms are built around the hospitality business. You will find valuable business intelligence integrated in your workflow. (ie your rooms are not just “products” and your visitors are not “clients” as per the traditional e-shop implementation)
- A fully integrated booking engine is usually provided.
- You will find valuable marketing tools integrated with these platforms such as email & Loyalty Campaigns, Promotional Offers, Social Networks integrations, Analytics & Insights etc. Your website becomes a part of your greater Online Marketing Strategy.
- With higher value comes a higher maintenance cost. Modular pricing or per room pricing might increase the cost.
If you want to explore the benefits of a Cloud Hotel Platform you can try for free Smart Hotels. Create your Hotel Website woth our Website Builder. (Check a Demo Website). We even provide a “Fully Managed” service, and we will build your website for you with a small cost.