First Impressions | Website top tips

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Exactly how long does it take to make a good first impression?

27 seconds according to a study by Dollar Shave Club. An NYU study quotes 7 seconds, while a Princeton study quotes milliseconds! The data may differ, but the fact is you don’t have long. And what happens if you get it wrong? A Harvard study revealed that it takes up to eight positive interactions to undo the damage of a previous negative experience.

When it comes to your website, the same theory applies. People form 75% of their judgment on a website’s credibility purely on its aesthetics, according to the University of Surrey. 88% of online visitors said they wouldn’t return to a website if they had a poor experience, while 53% said they would leave a site if the page took longer than 3 seconds to load.

Follow these five top tips to ensure your website makes the right impression first time:

  1. Who’s your audience and what are they after?
    Sounds obvious, but you first need to know who to impress. Who are you trying to attract – couples, families or business travellers? Where are they coming from? How long are they staying? What would make their stay memorable? Make sure you answer these questions on your home page.
  2. A (great) picture is worth a thousand words
    It may be an old adage, but it is still very true. We have lost count on how many sites we see that spend two paragraphs describing something that one image could illustrate. There is no coincidence that great sites have great pictures. Images are your shop window; your glossy brochure and your full page advertisement all-in-one – invest in quality photography and watch conversions soar.
  3. Quality control and continually updated
    Nothing tarnishes your website (and brand) more than bad grammar and outdated information! In fact a study by MyTechnology, revealed that 94% of people don’t trust outdated websites. They imply you either don’t care enough to keep everything up to date or that you lack the skill to maintain a website. Websites correlate directly with people’s judgement of your business.
  4. The THREE golden rules of direct bookings
    The whole purpose of a hotel website is to convert bookings directly. Firstly, make sure your guests know that the best price is always direct with you. Secondly, having a ‘book now’ button on every page offers visitors instruction on what they do next. Thirdly, a booking engine that allows visitors to book with the fewest clicks as possible.
  5. Never ever direct visitors away from your site
    The biggest mistake we see on websites! All that hard work, and at the crucial booking stage, customers are redirected to a third party booking website. ANY redirect impacts conversion, confuses customers, and most importantly, is hard to navigate on mobile. Inn Style’s BLISS Booking Engine embeds seamlessly ensuring the entire booking process is completed on your site, while increasing conversion rates by up to 300%.

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