What tips do you have to increase direct bookings?

  • 11 July 2023
  • 3 replies

Userlevel 3

There are some settings within the booking engine that always see an increase in conversion for direct bookings (space category pictures, rate descriptions, competitor price widget). It would be great to hear from the community on any other things that you’ve implemented that have shown a positive result in driving more direct bookings. Some examples might be:

  • Specific information in the rate descriptions
  • How you’ve sorted your space categories
  • Particular types of pictures
  • 3rd party integrations

What have you found to be successful to get more direct bookings?

3 replies

Userlevel 6
Badge +1

Thank you @Jason.Warnaar for setting up this topic! 

I was wondering if any of our community members might have any inputs on this? How do you drive customers to your booking engine? 

@MatthiasH @willjordan @barb00sa @sijtske Venema  👀💡🙏🍀

Userlevel 4
Badge +1

Dear Colleagues,   @MatthiasH @willjordan @sijtske Venema @Jason.Warnaar @MarketaOupi
More direct bookings is something we have been working on for years, the big liberation for hotels in Europe came when Hotrec won the lawsuit against the OTAs all over Europe so that we are now free again to set our own prices. Let me give you an example. 100 € in the hotel is 112 € for booking.com, 114 € for expedia and so on. We let the customer pay the commission that we have to pay to the OTAs. We also use the comparison tool on our website for this purpose. Our cancellation policy is also less strict by right than with the OTAs. Where we used to have 2/3 booking.com reservations we have been able to turn the tide and now have 2/3 direct bookings. But that took years to get this far. Also, customers who book direct get a Vip-Guide which entitles them to discounts at local stores and benefits at restaurants in our city. “Trivago” I ignore, I'm not going to pay for clicks to my direct site if the customer is paying the commissions on top of my price at the hotel when they book with Ota’s. Also have Google Hotel search on which yields regular straight bookings anyway. Of all the Ota's see that you have the direct email addresses that way you can send a promo a few times a year for the quieter periods. As eg 2+1 in the week. Or a discount for min. 5 nights. I also like to hear how others do it to attract more direct customers.


Userlevel 1

Hi all,

I think we are in a very luxury position because from the opening of the hotel in 2020 we have more then 80% direct bookings ( 14 rooms only). We are only on Booking.com ( i did a trail for a year with other Ota's such as Expedia but this was less then 1% of the bookings so I disconnected) and we also add 20,- per booking on b.com so this will trigger guests to book direct even though I do not have the comparison widget on my website. Beside that we have a very large social media community ( 20,5K on Insta 13K on facebook) which also gives us a lots of direct bookers. I know that guests love if they get more in return for a direct booking, such as an upgrade upon availability or late check out . So that would be something you might be able to add to the benefits.


Furthermore I do not offer all our room types on booking.com so that will also trigger guests to our own booking engine and added the most beautiful pictures in the booking engine of the rooms.


In the booking engine we have a clear explanation of the rooms which is not on b.com because they only use very limited information. 


Hope this will help you guys.


Warm regards,


Sijtske from Zoomers