Hotels investing in growing direct bookings, mobile upgrades for 2018

Hotels view their own websites as equally as effective at driving direct bookings as Google or TripAdvisor, a new report from SiteMinder shows.

According to its Global Hotel Business Index, 57% of respondents believe hotel websites will account for the most direct bookings in 2018, tied with those that think TripAdvisor will bring the highest numbers; Google follows directly behind at 56%.

The bulk of marketing spend to drive direct bookings will go toward online travel agency listings (74%), with search engine marketing (26%), social media marketing and email marketing (22% for both) the next most active channels. Only 11% of hotels will put marketing dollars toward mobile and 7% toward video.

The report also shows that technology factors into both top and bottom budget priorities for hotels for the year, with 61% investing in digital marketing and 56% investing in hotel technology such as channel management.

Over the past five years, hotels say their perception of technology has changed: 49% say they fully embrace new technology, while 46% say they use technology because they know they have to; 5% say they still consider technology a scary concept.

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