If you’re in the business of selling a Hawaii visitor experience, you know that you’re not just selling a tour or an admission fee; you’re selling an unforgettable event that someone will remember hopefully for the rest of their lives, and something that they’ll tell their friends about.
You probably have a website that acts as your online sales channel, just like all Hawaii activity and attraction suppliers these days. You know the importance of the Internet in cutting customer acquisition costs and increasing brand awareness.
But selling an experience via your website isn’t just about videos and a few cool photos. Indeed, selling online can be a complicated endeavor that requires a lot of moving parts, but the factors that govern the online selling experience can be easily understood.
So, what does make people book Hawaii activities and tours online? You can boil these down to three factors: The “WOW” factor, the “Trust” factor, and the “Yes” factor.
The WOW Factor
The WOW Factor is all about creating an online experience that captures your website visitor’s imagination and expectation of what his or her visit to Hawaii may be, and the experience he or she should expect when going on your activity or visiting your attraction. This comes in the form of photos, videos, and website design elements that convince your visitor that your activity or attraction is worth the time, effort and money to experience.
If your website has photos and other media highlighting key points of your activity or tour, then you’re off to a great start. However, don’t just show photos of your tour bus or a point of attraction. Show photos of actual customers enjoying your experience. This allows your potential customer to relate to the experience and generate more interest, which can eventually lead to either an inquiry or an online reservation (hopefully the latter, of course).
You don’t have to rely on photos either. Liven up your website’s color palette and make the visitor’s experience interactive. Use actual videos of your activity or attraction to make the point that what you offer is worth more than just a look.
Improve your website’s design to showcase your activities or main points of your attraction. Having a clean and uncluttered website design can do a lot of good in leading your potential customers through your online sales funnels.
Remember that you’re selling an experience, so write up your content in a factual but enticing manner. Provide as much information about each activity or attraction as you can so that your potential customers understand what the experience might be for them when they visit.
All of this (and more) can provide a visitor experience that mimics what you can offer offline through your activities or attraction in a fun and interactive way. You want your website visitors to say, “Wow, this activity/attraction looks fun/entertaining/educational/etc!”
The Trust Factor
The Trust Factor deals with easing your website visitor’s fears of making a costly mistake. These are elements that show you as a trusted and reputable company to deal with.
These days, buying something online includes reading product reviews and testimonials. It’s now a natural part of the online buying experience whether you’re just buying a book or a high-priced item. Obviously, you should expect the same from your online visitors. This is where TripAdvisor, Yelp and Google can be of great help especially if you have a strong rating on any of these sites. Don’t be afraid to showcase them; display a few badges on your website and invite them to read reviews of your past customers.
And don’t forget about social media, particularly Facebook! Ask your fans and followers to share a few words, videos and photos that you can post on your website.
Given that this may be the only chance your potential online customer may ever visit Hawaii, ease their minds by providing money-back guarantees and display trust icons from the BBB, HVCB, A3H, your secure certificate provider and your credit card processor. The more your potential customers understand that their transaction is secure and guaranteed, the easier it is for them to make a buying decision.
Another feature that you can integrate into your website is a customer chat option for contacting you with inquiries. Again, the point here is to develop trust, and you can easily do that by providing a human connection even if it’s just via online chat.
The Yes Factor
If the WOW Factor is all about image and perception, and the Trust Factor is all about reputation and ease of mind, the Yes Factor is all about convenience and your unique selling proposition.
The Yes Factor also provides an extra set of enticement elements to your website experience. It’s that final push to generate that online sale and encourages your website visitors to say, “Yes, I want to do this activity or visit this attraction.”
Now that you’ve shown your potential customer the experience your activity or attraction can offer and have assured them that making a reservation is secure and risk-free, it’s time to ask them to take the leap by making the reservations process as easy as possible.
Your “Book Now” buttons should be easy to spot. More importantly, your online reservations process should be quick and easy, with less clicks and pages as possible. This will reduce your shopping cart abandonment rate, which in turn will increase your website conversion rate.
In addition, providing online discounts and coupons are also a great way to get your visitor to click on that “Book Now” button. You can also create time-sensitive discounts and coupons that expire after a certain period to create that sense of urgency.
Making it easy for your mobile visitors to make a reservation is also important. This means that your website should translate or render well on mobile devices such as phones and tablets.
You can also provide another layer of convenience by encouraging your website visitors to call your reservations desk to make their reservations via phone. This means that your phone number should be a persistent element in your website’s design and is available to the visitor’s view no matter where they are on the website.
Again, the main point of making sure your website features all of these factors is for your business to be successful online. Once you understand the principles behind each of these factors, it’ll be easier for you to come up with ways to add more features and enticements for your potential online customers.