technology, hospitality, and plumbing…

Posts Tagged ‘ecommerce’

Strange Bedfellows

In General on August 1, 2014 at 12:11

A LOOK UNDER THE SHEETS AT THE EVER-EVOLVING RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN HOTELS AND OTAs.

Of the two great innovations that technology has enabled in the hotel business in the past 15 years, only one has been truly disruptive: the rise of Online Travel Agents.

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Making the most of your relationship with OTAs

In General on August 1, 2014 at 12:03

What makes the disruptive innovation of OTAs so fascinating is that they are simultaneously the hotels’ biggest competitor, and potentially their largest online sales channel (for all but the largest chains). The OTAs and the hotels clearly need each other.

Accepting this fact, how can hospitality brands make the most of their online friends-cum-enemies? Read the rest of this entry »

The QUOcast, a podcast about hospitality

In Podcast on June 28, 2014 at 16:20

The QUOcast, a podcast about hospitality

Something we’ve started experimenting with recently, a podcast about hospitality. Discussion includes “the death of the brand”, and an interview with Minor International’s Dilip Rajakarier.

http://quo.li/quocast

Mobile Websites: What are the Hotel Big Boys Doing?

In General on October 21, 2010 at 22:42

Mobile WebsitesI’ve been working on mobile sites for some clients just recently, and this has been informative, if slightly depressing! In a previous post i talked about how little distinction there is between hotel sub-brands. If you look at the mobile space, there’s very little distinction between the main brands themselves. Follow me while i take a look. Read the rest of this entry »

Websites: The Curse of Stale Content

In General on September 23, 2010 at 21:30

Websites: The Curse of Stale ContentOne of the first things that I try to persuade clients about is the need to be able to update their website themselves — there’s no point having to send changes to a webmaster or agency, something that could take days.

Most clients see the value in this, but keeping the content fresh, that’s a different matter.

Why is fresh content important? Read the rest of this entry »

Widescreen Websites — the New Design Reality

In General on September 7, 2010 at 20:55

toshiba-satellite-widescreenWeb designers and marketers have a right to feel cheated — no sooner had they started building websites to match the shiny new big monitors that people were getting with their desktops, than the whole landscape changed. Instead of large, square monitors, the market shifted, and in came widescreen monitors. The shape matched the HD TVs that everyone has been buying like crazy, and the fact is that TVs and movies look great!

This created a problem: nearly all laptops, and now most desktops, come with screens that are much wider, but offer only 600, 768, or 800 pixels in height. If that doesn’t mean much to you, previously the most common size was much bigger, 1024 high — so much more space — whereas now the fold is really high up the page.

Web designers were among the last to notice, with their large monitors. Business users noticed, with their ultra-small laptops, and many design teams were caught out. Read the rest of this entry »

Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid on your Hotel Website

In General on August 22, 2010 at 14:39

Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid on your Hotel WebsiteAs someone who has been building hotel websites for the last 10 years, i’ve seen my fair share of mistakes — i may even have made some of them in the past! Avoid these issues, and you’ll be on your way to an effective website that persuades visitors to become bookers.

Mistake 1: No Balance
Some sites are all images; other sites are all text with lousy images. Try to strike a balance — visitors have different drivers, needs, and motivations: some will be won over by great images; others may not care, they want the facts. A well balanced site should cater to both of these needs, and appeal to both user groups. Read the rest of this entry »

Is there ANY Loyalty to Hotel Booking Sites?

In General on August 18, 2010 at 06:15

Is there ANY Loyalty to Hotel Booking Sites?In Asia, we have a less developed online travel market than in Europe and the US. This means there are no dominant players like Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz, and Priceline.

The nearest we get to that is Zuji, which is the Asian offshoot of Travelocity. However, this serves limited markets, and under different brands, which doesn’t give it the mindshare of the 4 dominant players in the US and Europe. Priceline has Agoda, but apparently, it contributes only 3% of Priceline’s turnover. (Interestingly, Priceline has Booking.com as well as Agoda, what’s the story with the branding there?) Ctrip is big in China, has a very innovative business model (users can book online but pay offline, which gets round low credit card penetration, and a historical reluctance about online payments), but it has very little reach outside China.

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Opening new markets — should i translate my hotel website?

In General on August 10, 2010 at 18:30

Opening new markets -- should i translate my hotel website?This is a common one. I’ve been building hotel websites for clients for 10 years now, and a common request is to make them multilingual. However, there are 2 particular issues you need to look out for.

Firstly, have you thought about how much it costs to create the copy in a 2nd language? Were you thinking about freelancing it, or getting a member of staff who speaks the language to translate it? Think again. Consider how long you agonised over every single word in English, to get exactly the right copy, the right persuasive tone, that would bring you more bookings. Are you going to get the same perfect, persuasive text in a second language? It costs money to do the job right! Think copywriting in the 2nd language, not just translation. Read the rest of this entry »

What to look for in a hotel booking engine?

In General on August 4, 2010 at 20:57

What to look for in a hotel Booking EngineMost hotels need to make a choice about a 3rd-party booking engine at some stage, unless they’re part of a medium to large chain: most users expect to be able to make a booking online in realtime, so having a contact form is often not enough. There is so much choice in 3rd-party booking engines, not just in functionality, but also in business model. Clients often ask for advice in this crucial area. Here are a few considerations.

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