One of the major forces transforming hotel marketing today is technology. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions are presenting more choice than ever before to accommodation providers on how to market their property. And it has more than a few digital marketing agencies scrambling to protect their business (which has been pretty lucrative up until now).
Last month, John McAuliffe, President of Leonardo, wrote about how SaaS is changing the hospitality industry, and why more and more hotels are moving to a Digital Marketing System (DMS) to manage their online marketing over a digital agency.
Another popular option for a hotel has been the DIY route; building their own website using a “free” or open source platform like WordPress, Textpattern, Dotclear, Plone, Drupal or GoDaddy. These platforms are appealing because of their templated design and perceived cost-savings.
But on closer inspection, are these DIY platforms actually free? After all, not even the WordPress homepage mentions anything about being free. Instead, it touts its premium and business features, which come at an extra cost.
So, using WordPress as an example, let’s examine exactly how much it would cost to build a Hotel website yourself, so you can make an informed decision for your property.
First, the essentials.
A free WordPress account probably won’t be suitable straight off the bat, because you can’t use your own domain name; instead you get a subdomain like mysite.wordpress.com (not to mention ads on your website). So, you’ll need to upgrade to the Premium version ($99/year).
Next, you will need to purchase a domain name
Your WordPress website will need to be linked to a domain name. This will probably cost you $15 per year for a .com domain that is available. If the domain you want is already taken, you may need to bid for it at auction, or purchase it from the owner for an inflated price.