Why Your Hotel Needs An App
There is a very high customer demand for hospitality and tourism businesses to go digital with apps and online ordering platforms for websites. Initially you might think demand is focused on food operators and caterers, but in fact it cuts across the entire market, including hotels, guesthouses, destination providers, attractions and bed and breakfast operators.
Why Does Your Tourism Business Need An App?
Recently we have seen many hotel groups partner with food delivery companies like GrubHub (in the USA) to launch their own hotel app. But why would you encourage your potential guests to look for food externally when you should encourage them to order from the hotel restaurant and kitchen via your own app or website?
Launching your own food ordering and booking app doesn’t require as much investment or upheaval as you might initially expect, and the benefits – including enhanced customer satisfaction and engagement – are off the scale. So, keeping that in mind, if you do decide to push a branded app to customers, there are a few features you might want to include and should.
Good User Experience App Design
Did you know that the average mobile app retention rate is approximately 20% after 90 days? That is not that great. While the reasons do vary, the role of user experience cannot be ignored. Consumers are very fickle, they will judge an app by its look, ease of use and functionality – and that is before they have actually used it!
To encourage repeat use, create an app where potential guests can easily navigate the menu and place orders in just a few clicks. You want to create a professional, clear, classy and streamlined interface that represents your brand accurately. And don’t forget push notifications that update the user on their order status will also contribute positively to the user experience and keep them informed.
Why Have An Online Loyalty Programme?
By incorporating elements of a loyalty programme into your food ordering, room booking or hotel app, you will give your customers a strong incentive to use it again during subsequent stays and visits. While most ordering platforms don’t have loyalty built in as standard, that’s not a problem. The best app designers and providers will have open APIs and loyalty partners that can integrate to offer the exact programme required, be it stamps, points or something else.
Make Sure Everything You Do Is Trackable
This one may be a back-end feature, but one of the biggest gripes we have with food delivery companies like Just Eat or GrubHub is that they rarely give clients access to their own customer data. This ties the business to the aggregator, forcing them to rely on it to push any marketing because the venue can’t identify, reach out to or market to customer themselves.
App owners should be given and have full, unencumbered access to their customers’ data, without having to pay any extra for the privilege. Ideally that data will be automatically analysed and laid out on a dashboard so that the business can take full advantage of it.
The Best App Design For Hotels
Modern customers expect their favourite brands and businesses to know them on a deeper level; it all plays into a greater customer experience and is essential for loyalty. A guest will be far more willing to share their personal information if they get an engaging and personal experience in return when they book.
As stated, it is essential to work with a technology provider that will grant you full access to your customer data, it’s the only way to understand and serve the customer at a level they will appreciate. The combination of pre-order and pre-pay data provides a rounded view of habits and preferences, it’s what allows you to create an effective loyalty scheme and engage customers in your marketing efforts. Personalised digital marketing creates better engagement, which leads to increased visits and greater spend per head.
Tourism App Design In Devon
A successful hospitality and booking app will include all the features discussed above, and perhaps many others, but the most important thing to keep in mind is simplicity. An app is a means to an end, the customer wants to order food, book a room and products or services and pay for them on in-app. They should be able to do so quickly and with the minimal of fuss. It’s experiences like that which will keep them coming back for more and in turn repeat bookings.
If you’re curious about having a hotel booking or restaurant app and how it can benefit your business give us a call.