How to Devise and Communicate Your Hotel’s Health and Safety Policy
At this stage as a hotelier, you’ve done your research. You’ve read the health and safety guidelines, and have begun planning and implementing all the new measures necessary for your hotel to function in this far from pandemic-free world. Some of the more important things you’ve needed to look at have most likely include implementing an enhanced cleanliness policy in communal areas, training staff in new, safer ways of dealing with customers, ensuring comfortable spacing has been considered in the bar and restaurant – above all, we know your main priority is keeping everyone safe. Knowing they are in safe (and clean!) hands is of great importance to your guests and potential guests – now, more than ever before.
Even if it is only subconsciously, potential bookers will seek out health and safety information for at least some small reassurance that their decision to go away is not one to be nervous about. This is their holiday, being taken at a very unstable time – your job is to try and make them feel relaxed and comforted.
Getting it across the right way
The thing is, displaying the information any old way won’t cut it. The way you display and communicate this new health and safety information is crucial. Getting the balance right between the facts and a soft, comforting tone will mean you won’t panic or overpower anyone. It should fit naturally into your website, social and ezine content – no need for harsh or rigid language, treat it like all your other content and filter the facts through your own unique tone of voice.
Soften your language
Sometimes we tend to leave more factual content the way it is – robotic, boring, hard to read. Remember how important the language you use to communicate your health and safety information is and how many people will be seeking this content out. If you can, try and steer clear of headings like ‘Covid-19 Policy’, even for the sake of the connotation it will evoke. Soften it up a little bit – think ‘Wellness Statement’, ‘Our Care Policy’, ‘How We’ll Look After You’.
Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort have identified their health & safety webpage of content as ‘Our Commitment’. This not only evokes an instant feeling of security and confidence in potential bookers, it’s not too overwhelming. Take note of their homepage too, where they are calling their hotel ‘Your Safe Haven’. This is a powerful way of tapping into where their guests are at physically and emotionally at the moment – pandemic stress, people! – and letting them know at a glance they will be taken care of when they arrive.
Are you answering questions your guests have?
None of us are strangers to travel anxiety right now. The staycation is great, but potential guests are still nervous – rightly so – and they’re cautious. With many differing thoughts and concerns from different types of travellers, it’s not a bad idea to have an FAQ page where anyone can easily find the answer to their question there and then. This is also good for voice search.
Do it justice
If you’re putting in the trouble of gathering health and safety information to display on your site for guests to see, you may as well do it right, and do it justice! Don’t just copy and paste your internal health and safety policy onto your website. To reiterate once again: this content is crucial right now and many, many potential guests will seek it out. Give it as much love as the rest of your content. It’s better to create a new page on your website rather than throwing it all in a pdf, so avoid this if you can. Finally, optimise the page!
Make sure guests can find what they’re looking for
So you’ve designed a beautiful web-page, have devised a comforting, informative heading and your policy is outlined clearly below. As well as optimising the page, make sure there are multiple opportunities for guests and potential guests to come across the content. It can be included on your homepage, your booking engine, your pre-stay email, social media – to name but a few places. We offer mobile-friendly safety charter logos for our clients’ websites which live on their homepage and link back to the corresponding health and safety page. A non-invasive yet clear and reassuring way of directing guests there if they need to find out more about your policy.
Ask for feedback
One final tip – ask for feedback. This is all new to all of us! We’re learning as we go, and your guests know and appreciate this. Asking for feedback in your post-stay emails will help shine a light on what you’re doing right, what you could potentially improve on, and the overall sentiment towards this area from the people who matter most – your customers.
We spoke a little bit about the importance of including updated health and safety content on your website in this week’s Marketing in the Morning podcast, listen back here.
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