A recent survey by Croatian website Posloni Turizam, which concentrates on the promotion of business tourism in Croatia, revealed the extent to which Croatian hotels use the Internet as a means of marketing and to attract sales.
The survey, conducted amongst 95 hotels, showed that all have websites (I certainly would not be able to believe that any hotel wouldn’t in this day and age!), whilst 93% offer means for booking accommodation online – shame on those who don’t! Even fewer, 79.3% of these hotels, offer a way of accepting payment online. However, 93.1% of these hotels do offer their accommodation through some kind of travel portal or booking site, such as Booking.com or Expedia.
Whilst it may be thought that online booking would be a very popular method of attracting sales, respondents in the survey revealed somewhat otherwise. Only 17.3% of these hotels said that online booking accounted for half of their total bookings. 15.5% said they achieved 25-50% of total bookings online, while by far most – 56.9% – said this method accounted for up to only 25% of their total bookings.
However, about half (in fact 49.8%) of those that took part in the survey suggested that in five years’ time, they expect the Internet to account for half of total bookings taken. For that reason, these hotels intend to invest more in Internet marketing in the future, although at present 44.8% of these hotels stated that less than a quarter of their marketing budget went on advertising online. At the present time, those that do engage in online marketing say that they advertise on search engines (which 65% of respondents claimed they do); banner advertising (58%); targeted online advertising on foreign sites (55%); and advertising on Facebook (51%).