I will want you to think of a web design company as your marketing partner. And I have got 8 reasons why you should.
The website designed for you will, no doubt, play an integral role in helping your hotel achieve its online goals. Whether having a new website designed for your hotel or redesigning an existing one, the hiring decision you make will go a long way to dictate the success of your hotel website.
With 80% of hotels bookings in the USA being carried out online after a visit to the hotel's website, you can be sure getting the right person for the job is essential and a major way to get such company is by asking relevant questions from them.
Here are the 8 top questions you must ask from your design company before getting your hotel website done.
#1: Can I see a Portfolio of your Works?
Before you entrust your hotel's image to a website designer it is essential to look out for previous works done by such designer. This will give you an early insight into the competences of the designer.
Seeing the design portfolio of the company will give you an overview of what to expect from your hotel's website. A positive review of previous works by the design company is a green light when looking for a design company. You can also contact previous clients to see if the works delivered by the web design company has helped improve their hotel's image and visibility.
#2: What platform and CMS will be used, and will I be able to easily edit the content?
There are many platforms that can be used as the framework for your hotel website including WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Home-grown content management systems, etc
Make sure you ask your design company the exact platform they will be using for you and also ask if you’ll be able to edit the content on your own without their help.
#3: What is the inclusive cost of the project?
There are usually two types of contract when it comes to designing a website; hourly contract or contract based on the project. In case your hotel is just starting up, you probably don’t have a huge budget for building a website. So in order to avoid being hit by additional costs afterward, you should make sure you ask to know the final cost for the project before signing the agreement.
#4: How long will the project take?
Although there could always be unforeseen obstacles springing up in the course of the project to delay completion – it is normal and should be planned for. However, make sure your design company is able to give you an estimated timeline and ensure you monitor it throughout the project to be sure your design stays on track.
#5: Will my website have live chat feature?
This is a very important feature of hotel websites these days as a huge number of people are now secretly planning their vacations at work. These people can’t really pick up the phone in their cubicle to ask any question. In other to make it simple for them to book for their vacation – even right in their office, a live chat feature should be added to your hotel website.
#6: Will the website have a sticky mobile click to call feature?
I’m sure you will not only want your prospective customers to view your hotel website and leave. You will want to convert them from mere lookers to bookers. Then, your site should include a click to call feature. When your hotel website is viewed on mobile, the sticky phone icon should be on every page and stick to the screen no matter how far down the page customer scroll. They will simply click on it to put a call through to book. So, ensure your design company can add this to your site.
#7: Will my website be built upon a responsive framework?
It may interest you to know that Google uses mobile friendliness as one of the factors for ranking sites on their engine and users also want to visit and book a hotel whose website works well across all devices. Therefore, ensure your design company is building your hotel site on a responsive platform.
#8: Will my hotel website have the Google driving direction widget?
You may think your design company should know this already. But you need to be sure your site is not just going to be having a Google Map but also the Driving Directions Map. This will help prospective customers locate your hotel easily and many of them want to see your site has this widget.
Don’t forget, your website design is a perfect reflection of your hotel. It is important the design company you select is on board to help you achieve the goals of having the site in the first place. Your hotel website design should be able to convert a prospective customer from a mere looker to a booker.
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