Exponential growth in technology has entered a new trajectory where businesses can incorporate advanced innovations into their business strategies to experience new heights of success. One obvious example in hospitality industry of new effective technology is virtual tour. It is a tool to attract more travelers to encourage them to make hotel bookings. But, what exactly is virtual tour and why hotels are creating virtual tour?
With so many hotels-independent as well as hotels belonging to chains- competing to gain more customers than others and stay ahead in the competition, it becomes necessary to take advantage of technology to lure travelers by making them aware of the luxury accommodation and modern services the property is offering, and turn them into loyal guests.
Being a hotelier, I have observed that guests spend a long time online searching and comparing hotels before booking accommodation. They want to make sure that the hotel they are choosing for their stay is clean, spacious and equipped with all modern facilities. Although most hotels have their official website where they mention everything about the property, including information on accommodation, services and their pictures, many hoteliers have started offering hotel virtual tour on the website.
Hotel virtual tour is a powerful method that hotels can use to provide their website visitor an opportunity to explore their property through 360-degree walk-through. Rather than hotel images, people can move within the hotel rooms and other area of the hotel while sitting miles away from the place. It not just provides transparency but also satisfies travelers about a hotel before making bookings.
Text is powerful and a picture speaks thousand words, but a virtual tour offers much more than that to a hotel.
Benefits of Hotel Virtual Tour
There are benefits behind the method that makes it immensely popular among hoteliers.
Increases view time on website: According to a recent survey, hotel websites offering virtual tour have 5% to 10% longer view time than the sites without a virtual tour option. It has also increased the hotels’ revenue by more than 135%. The study also revealed that hotels have experienced more than 40% sales after applying virtual tour on their websites.
Save guests’ time and boost bookings: More than 90% of modern-day travelers say 360-degree view of a hotel saves their time and satisfies them about the hotel’s services. Instead of going through every section of a hotel’s website to know if it has all the facilities that you are looking for, a virtual tour takes you to a particular area of the hotel to ensure your preferred amenities. For example, an individual on business tour can virtually visit the conference of meeting room section of the hotel to check if it’s suitable to hold a business meeting.
Increased direct bookings: In OTAs-dominated world, hotel virtual tour can take potential guests towards official website of a hotel to make bookings. It is because virtual tour facility increases traffic on the website and make visitor stick to it for a long time. When they spend some time on the website, they prefer booking accommodation through the same medium.
Gain attention on social media: Virtual tour of hotel’s official website can be shared on social media to reach many potential guests at one time. It will differentiate your hotel from others and engage people in a new way.
How to Create Hotel Virtual Tour
- You should use high-tech tools with ultra-wide-angle lens to generate panoramic images of the hotel.
- Virtual tour software should be used to make it look professional. Among different virtual tour software, pick one based on reviews and your requirement.
- Before you start creating virtual tour, decide the hotel locations to show. In addition, determine the areas to be highlighted and how they should be presented to online viewers.
- Incorporate virtual tour with text to make guests aware of all hotel services and amenities.
With so many people traveling to different areas for different purposes, it becomes essential to lure them with attractive services. Hotel virtual tour is a way to tell them the property is clean, spacious and luxurious. It will not just help your first impression on customers, but may also result into high conversion rates.