In this, now famous study by psychologists Sheena Iyengar and Mark Lepper, consumers bought more when offered fewer choices. “With 24 flavors, 60% of the store’s customers stopped to taste test and 3% of the tasters bought jam. With six flavors, 40% of the store’s customers stopped to taste test, but 30% of those tasters bought jam. Customers were ten times more likely to buy when offered less flavors.”
Clearly too many options overwhelm shoppers who will often abandon the shopping cart if their are too many option. It is also true that less choices, more often than not, will increases conversions.
For hotels the dilemma with website bookings is that hotels have multiple room types, rates and options which can easily exceed 50 or choices. In addition their are add-ons and upgrades that can just confound travellers.
For the most part it is not possible for hoteliers to present a a standard room into a suite, or a garden view to a beach front for example, yet as this article points out there are some simple strategies can help to boost conversion in travel shopping.
Here are some suggestion for our own experience and from the linked article
1. Set defaults in booking choice.. Exapmple Poinsettia Villa Apartments. When a user clicks on the book now or reservations button they go direct to booking process set fr a reservation for the average stay (7 days) and starting 7 days from the current date. The booking engin shows all units with a brief description and image. Shoppers can get more info by clicking on details within the arcRes booking options.
2. Show best rates and special. A booking engine like the one above will loook for the best rates and show the traveler the best option for them. The best rates are show above normal rates that are crossed out. This makes shoppers feel comfortable that the are getting the best deal. Its also important to have Best Rate Guarantee show ion the site.
3. Minimize add-ons during booking. The airline industry success in up-selling premium seats and travel insurance when booking flights, and hospitality followed with add-ons that are now a part of bookings. The fact is that data shows few shoppers purchase add-ons, and it accounts to approx 0.1% of the total revenue. The suggestion is don’t offer them till after the booking is done.
4. Beak down the buying process into several steps. To varying degrees hotel websites help shoppers through the booking process. In the Power Marketing Consultants Strategy, website design is seen as part of the messaging system and need to be focused on specific goals and steps in getting people to that point. For example, start with a compelling headline that talks to your ideal customers needs. Create 3 hot buttons that lead people to information answering their question or displaying information that they need. Its a departure and rethinking of the tradition approach that looks at a website as a brochure.
PMC points out that those days are over. Hotel Websites must be behavior responsive, visually engaging sales funnels that are an integrated part of marketing, advertising and messaging systems.
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5. Make it visual. We have shown how visual and behavior responsive technology has increased engagement by 500% and conversion by 300%. With news systems and the latest VisualBookingsTechnology.com hotel and tourism organization can transform static pages into highly effective sales funnels. Hotels need to start to look at website as sales funnels and implement the latest technology to improve the travel-shopers experience. See more on how visual information system like Pinterest are Transforming travel