By Luke Markesky
Black Friday has surged in popularity over the past decade, and it has become the most important day for hotels to capture online bookings. Many travelers wait specifically for Black Friday to book their travel for the year, and most hotels cannot afford to miss out on this huge share of the business. Of course, creating an enticing sale offer is the first step to beating the competition and guaranteeing conversions. From discounted rates to special inclusions, there are many ways that hoteliers can tempt potential guests and encourage them to book a stay.
However, ensuring a successful Black Friday campaign is not as simple as “build it and they will come.” No matter how good your offer is, you might end up losing the booking if the user isn’t quite ready to book, wants to compare offers from other hotels before buying, or simply misses the offer altogether. However, there are extra steps that hoteliers can take to maximize bookings and make sure their marketing efforts aren’t in vain. Keep reading to learn about our most effective quick wins to make the most of your Black Friday campaigns.
1. Generate buzz
The best Black Friday campaigns start long before sale day itself rolls around. As all hoteliers and hospitality marketers know, the travel-planning journey can involve multiple steps across multiple touch points. To help increase conversions during the campaign, hoteliers should give potential guests time to plan and prepare mentally before making their purchase.
Here are some easy ways to generate buzz and raise awareness for your Black Friday sale long before it begins:
- Add a promotional banner or tile on the hotel website — preferably on the home page. The promo can tease the campaign and let website visitors know that something special is coming.
- Add an email subscription call-to-action (CTA) on the banner which promises to alert the user when the best Black Friday offers go live. You can also use an email-subscription pop-up when users arrive at the website or when they leave.
2. Create urgency
Creating a sense of urgency can be a very effective way of increasing conversions during a campaign. This is especially true for holiday sales because holidays only last for a certain period of time. Make sure to remind your website visitors that your special Black Friday offer is not going to last forever. A great way to do this is by using a countdown timer on the website home page. Sometimes that extra urgency is all it takes to turn a looker into a booker.
3. Make it personal
When it comes to marketing, personalization is always a good thing. Black Friday campaigns are no different, and there are many ways that you can use personalization to maximize conversions. Slightly changing your offer and promoting different inclusions to different audiences, such as complimentary parking for in-state travelers, welcome amenities for new visitors, or VIP experiences for return guests, are all good examples. Personalizing the creative and offers on your website to address these groups directly will further help your offer stand out and make the guest feel appreciated.
4. Don’t let them forget
While many hotels try to avoid overselling — and ultimately overwhelming — their website visitors, the rules are different on Black Friday. Users understand that this is the biggest shopping day of the year, and therefore they expect to see additional ads and promotions online. Take advantage of this by utilizing pop-ups and promotions on the hotel website. Remind users about your Black Friday sale at every step of the website experience, from first landing on the site to initiating a booking to navigating away. Your Black Friday campaign will most likely be your best offer with your highest conversion rate, so it is worth making sure your website visitors don’t miss it.
Black Friday alone can make or break a hotel’s revenue reports for the year, so it is imperative that hoteliers make sure their campaigns are set up for success. Even with a competitive offer, any campaign can fail if the right steps aren’t taken to tip the scales in your favor. Thankfully, these quick wins will help you check all the boxes to increase conversions and maximize your marketing efforts. Of course, for personalized solutions and additional expertise, the team of hospitality professionals at Cendyn is always happy to help.