Prior to a couples initial contact with yourself, they are highly likely to have visited your website. This could have come from a variety of sources; a google search, social media, venue directory, digital articles but ultimately they more than likely will end up viewing your site prior to visiting your venue in person.

Wedding Venue Website Design Tips

With that in mind, ask yourself is your website the best reflection of your venue? And do you understand what could be wrong with your site?

We outline common mistakes on wedding venue websites and discuss actions to resolve for a site that converts to leads.

Difficult to navigate

In this day and age information can be found instantly with less time being spent on individual sites and pages, the overall goal is to find things fast without complication.

Your websites ease of use is paramount, be honest and ask yourself the following questions;

  • How easy is your website to navigate?
  • Is it easy to find information on weddings specifically?
  • Can you view a photo gallery of a recent wedding at your venue?
  • Do you have information on what your venue offers for weddings, what couples get and the benefits of your venue to engaged couples?
  • Is it easy for couples to get in touch, download a brochure, ask a question and book a viewing?

You want your website to be clean and simple to allow for easy navigation, text has to be easy to read and imagery should be large, clear and in a high resolution to show your venue at it’s best. Sometimes less is more, cut out unnecessary elements and ensure you have lots of white space.

Don’t include information and text for the sake of it, it must be useful to connect with couples and give them something they would want to know. A dated busy website with too much text can leave couples frustrated, overwhelmed and could turn them away from your venue.

Your website may work great on a desktop, but with many users now using their phone and tablets, is your site readable on mobile devices and how does it look on them? Is it still easy to use? Common mistakes include; buttons which are too small, text being difficult to read and pages which are slow to load.

A mobile friendly site is also important for your Google ranking and has an impact on this as well.

If your website is not mobile friendly you are making it difficult for people to view your site, hurting your Google ranking and significantly reducing your amount of leads, so now would definitely be the time to look at a redesign and hire a web designer.

Action steps: Review your website on your phone and desktop, is it easy to use and navigate? Can you easily access the key and important pages of your site that promote your venue? Once reviewed, ensure you make changes to improve any areas.

Poor imagery and communication

A mistake we come across time and time again is that a venue spends a lot of time getting their website right and then that’s it. The box has been ticked website done and its never touched again for a very long time. The design and development of your website is stage 1, you need to keep adding, evaluating and working on it for it to flourish.

It is easy for your last blog post to be dated 12 months ago, for your venue photos to be from a shoot 2 years ago and for your last testimonial to be dated from June 2017. Keeping your website fresh and up to date should be on your monthly to-do list. Add your latest testimonials, share recent news and weddings on your blog, ensure you have photos showing off new features in your venue. Which is where networking with local photographers who shoot weddings at your venue comes in really handy!

A blog on your website is a great way to add new useful content, from advice for couples planning their wedding to discussing new features at your venue. You could be introducing key staff members and perhaps include a Q&A, for example ask your head chef about your seasonal wedding day menus, discuss the exciting cocktails your head barman has been creating and ask your wedding co-ordinator about her favourite spaces around your venue.

Wedding Venue Blogging

Blogging is a great way to connect with couples and also brilliant for your website SEO. A couple of posts every month across the year is better than 5 in the first two months and then none for the rest of the year. Be consistent and add value.

Testimonials are sometimes the best form of copy you need, what’s better for an engaged couple to see than a genuine recently wed couple singing your praises? Do you have the latest and best reviews added to your site and are they easy to see and find?

Does your website imagery reflect your brand, does it show you in the best light possible, does it tie in with your marketing literature, brochures, your price point and audience? A luxury venue wants a website that reflects the quality offered, make sure your site if focused on and talks to your ideal client.

Action steps: Work with wedding photographers, ask if you can use any of their photos on your website in a gallery or on your blog. Think about hiring a photographer to take some professional photos of your venue. Organise content to add to your blog and set up a blog plan and schedule for the year.

No clear call to action

If a couple loves what they see, you want them to get in touch and book a viewing, so make sure it is easy for this to happen.

Is it clear and obvious for couples to understand how to get in touch and where to click? You may have a link at the end of a paragraph of text that says ‘book a viewing’ but this may not stand out.

A large button in a strong colour that stands out will make it clear where to click and why to click it. Use the same style of button and same colour throughout your site, this gives consistency and helps users know where to click.

Action steps: Ensure you have clear call to actions on your site, to get in touch, book a viewing and check availability.

Not making it about them

Beautiful photography can sell your venue, but you want to connect with potential couples and help them understand what the benefits of your venue are and what they will get.

You can talk about your venue and what you offer,  but connect with them and make it about them and what they get. Instead of ‘we have accommodation for up to 30 guests’, how about ‘your friends and family can stay over with rooms for up to 30 guests’.

Instead of ‘we have our own wedding planner on site helping you on the day’ how about ‘you will have your own onsite wedding planner helping create your dream day’. More ‘you’ and ‘your’ than ‘we’ and ‘I’.

Action steps: Review your website copy, less is more. Make sure it connects with your potential couples and make it about them and how you can help.

Not reviewing your analytics

Your website can give you a lot of information, installing Google analytics allows you to see how people are finding your website (Google, directories, blogs, social media), how they are viewing (Desktop vs mobile), where they are based, what pages they view, at what point they leave your site and a whole lot more.

This information is key. With this you can see your most popular pages, how many people view your wedding pages and make contact, how many click through to your contact form page and how many leave your site (bounces)?

Looking at this allows you to improve your website, perhaps you are getting lots of traffic but few enquires, with this information it can help you to understand possible reasons for this and allow you to make changes that could be beneficial. For example, you may have a gallery page full of stunning images but this is hardly viewed, then perhaps you need to make it clearer and easier to find on your site.

Another great tool is HotJar, this can track where users move their cursor and click on your web pages. This information can be invaluable, you may have a large button which users can click to get in touch, but you may find out it is too far down the page and couples don’t scroll enough to even see it.

Action steps: Ensure Google analytics is installed, it is free and easy to set up, ask your web designer to help if you are unsure. If you have it installed, then review it and use it to your advantage to make improvements to your site.

Going forward

You can spend a lot of money on advertising which can create leads direct to you, however potential leads could be lost if your website doesn’t give a great impression.

Your site needs to excite and captivate to obtain leads, so it is important to review it and make sure it is part of your marketing strategy and not just something you look at once each year.

Quick tips to improve your website:

  • Review your website on mobile devices
  • Check out your Google analytics to find areas you could improve
  • Update your site imagery
  • Review your website copy, keeping in mind less is more
  • Set up a blog plan for the year (introduce team members, tips for couples, new venue features)

The website is your shop front and an integral part of your customer experience, make sure you set a great first impression and have couples already in love with your venue before they have even got in touch.