Denis Grankin Head of Sales Department

How to Develop a Hotel Booking App for your own hotel business

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make hotel apps

Evolving mobile environment has transformed our world in just a few years, presenting new ways of connecting, consuming and working. Mobile phones have become the portals through which people communicate with the outer world. They hold our most personal details and help us navigate through the diverse range of services. Mobile devices are used for everything from researching destinations and booking flights, to room reservation through mobile apps.

A great number of businesses in the hospitality industry should focus on the mobile application potential in order to stay competitive locally and globally. They should develop branded mobile solutions to provide their customers with a quick and easy hotel reservation process anytime and anywhere. This can influence purchase decisions, foster loyalty and capture future bookings from a customer.

app downloads in the world

Mobile app downloads worldwide are expected to reach 352.9 billion in 2021 based on Statista. The number of mobile phone users worldwide is forecast to grow 2.87 billion in 2019, with smartphone penetration rates increasing as well. These factors mean that hotel businesses should focus on mobile solutions to engage users by offering face-to-face interactions and self-service options that users are looking for.

With all signs pointing to the continued rise in mobile booking, let’s take a closer look at some benefits the businesses get when implementing their own hotel reservation apps.

Benefits the businesses get when building a hotel reservation app

  • Brand loyalty by creating personalised user experience based on valuable data and insights analysis regarding customer journey through a mobile app.
  • Data gathering used to understand how users come to purchase your products and how they are interacting with them that helps to act on it and enhance the user experience.
  • Gaining more revenue by using push notifications and in-app messages, which timely inform users of special offers and encourage them to book a hotel and other services as well.
  • Speeding up operations with an app that increases staff efficiency and creates shorter wait times for users.
  • Competitive edge in the hotel industry when developing a mobile app that serves the users who prefer to purchase a product or service directly from their mobile phones.

How beneficial is a hotel reservation app for users? Let's consider!

Benefits the users get when using a hotel booking application

  • Convenient and time-saving way to find and book a hotel.
  • Offering a wide range of deals within the hotel reservation application.
  • Making more informed choices due to providing more content (e.g. videos, property maps, and experience reports, ratings).
  • Quick and easy price comparison.

While creating a hotel reservation app, not only the benefits for users should be considered, but also the major features which will make this app successful and different from the similar ones. Below we have presented them:

The key features a successful hotel reservation app should have

Hotel information. Most users are looking for a GPS navigation, a gallery with hall and rooms photos, area travel guides, restaurant menus, etc. In order to satisfy the user’s needs and expectations and speed up making a decision, excellent photo galleries should be used to present the hotels and explain their major features by providing additional details about the amenities, such as swimming pools, restaurants, wellness and spa facilities, etc.

Search and booking. These are one of the main features any hotel reservation app should include. Booking should be user-friendly and easy to understand. Search should be fast and highly customized including various filters: visitors’ reviews, price rates, hotel rating.

User personal account. Users should be able to create their own account that can be integrated with social media accounts in order to review the history of the past/future reservations, news and offers of selected hotels.

Notification and Alerts. Notifications and alerts should be used to keep the users up to date regarding upcoming events, special deals and offers, best discounts for reservations, etc.

Payment Gateway. Payment gateway integration in the mobile app simplifies and facilitates a quick and seamless user shopping experience in a few moments.

Social community. Social community support allows users to share their feedbacks, hotel reviews, photos/videos that keep them active in social media.

The must-have features of the hotel reservation mobile app have been considered. Now let’s delve into the process of development in detail.

How to make a hotel reservation application

1. Conceptualizing

To define the business idea of the application, thorough analysis and eliciting the client’s requirements should be done. This information allows identifying the major app’s concept.

2. Prototyping

To bring client’s ideas to life, a prototyping as a quick and effective way should be used. After a sample is created, stakeholders observe and test it, then give their opinions in order to make improvements during a design process.

3. Design

Created prototype allows us to understand the full idea of the UX flow:the screens include arrangement, functionality, etc. This information help design all the screens in a few versions in order to choose the colors, shapes, fonts, icons, light-dark elements you like.

4. Development

Below we give a brief review of tools that can be helpful when developing a hotel reservation application. Let’s take a look:

  • ZUMATA Hotel Booking API or Expedia Affiliate Network API can be used to fill the hotel app with accommodation offers.
  • Olery Hotel Review Data and TripAdvisor Content APIs provide access to hotel ratings and reviews.
  • Google Places API is used to add information about cafeterias, restaurants, etc. that can be critical to making a decision when selecting a hotel.
  • izi.TRAVEL API provides access to the collection of multimedia city and museum guides of 1,500+ museums and 1,300+ cities located around the world and can be used to augment things.
  • Stripe SDK is useful when handling in-app payments.
  • Google Maps API is the easiest way to integrate a map into your app.

5. Testing

App testing helps to avoid inconvenience, protect the business reputation from unpleasant surprises and negative user feedback after publishing on the AppStore/Google Play. The app is tested thoroughly for different errors by forming various test cases.

6. Release

Once an app is error-free, it can be launched. A hotel reservation app should be uploaded onto the market - AppStore/Google Play - from where users will be able to download it.

Also, you can read: How to make a hotel booking website

Bottom line

The growth and popularity of mobile landscape have changed the hotel industry, bringing new opportunities to serve their customers. Currently, a mobile application is the greatest and effective solution to engage more customers and increase their base.

DDI Development team has a solid experience in creating a wide range of digital solutions. If you have an excellent idea, let us know and we turn it into successful and effective hotel reservation application that will boost your business and generate revenue.

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