Best Sales Funnels for the Hospitality Industry

In the competitive landscape of the hospitality industry, it’s crucial for hotels, resorts, and other hospitality businesses to effectively attract and convert potential guests. This is where sales funnels come into play. Sales funnels provide a structured framework to guide potential guests through the stages of their decision-making process, from awareness to action. By implementing a well-designed sales funnel, hospitality businesses can optimize their marketing strategies and increase their chances of converting prospects into paying guests.

This article serves as a comprehensive guide to sales funnels in the hospitality industry. We will explore the key components of a sales funnel specifically tailored to the unique needs of the hospitality sector. From generating awareness and nurturing interest to driving conversions and fostering guest loyalty, we will delve into the essential steps and strategies for each stage of the sales funnel. By understanding and implementing these principles, hospitality businesses can elevate their marketing efforts, attract more guests, and ultimately boost revenue.

What is a Sales Funnel for the Hospitality Industry?

A sales funnel for the hospitality industry is a systematic approach to guiding potential guests through the various stages of their decision-making process, ultimately leading them to book a hotel room, make a reservation, or utilize hospitality services. It is a marketing framework designed to optimize the customer journey and increase conversion rates.

The sales funnel in the hospitality industry typically consists of the following stages:

  1. Awareness: This is the initial stage where potential guests become aware of a hotel or hospitality service through various marketing channels such as advertisements, social media, search engines, or word-of-mouth.
  2. Interest: In this stage, potential guests develop an interest in the hotel or service. They may visit the hotel’s website, read reviews, explore amenities, or engage with the brand’s content.
  3. Consideration: At this stage, potential guests are evaluating different options and comparing various hotels or services. They may research prices, locations, facilities, and read customer reviews to make an informed decision.
  4. Decision: In the decision stage, potential guests have narrowed down their options and are ready to make a booking or reservation. They may interact with the hotel directly through phone calls, online booking platforms, or email inquiries.
  5. Action: The final stage is where potential guests take action and complete the booking or reservation process. This may involve submitting personal information, selecting dates, making payments, and receiving a confirmation.

Throughout each stage of the sales funnel, hospitality businesses implement targeted marketing strategies, such as personalized promotions, persuasive content, customer testimonials, and seamless booking experiences, to guide potential guests towards conversion and ensure a positive customer experience.

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Types of Sales Funnels Used in Hospitality.

In the hospitality industry, there are various types of sales funnels that can be used to attract and convert potential guests. Here are a few commonly used types:

  1. Direct Booking Funnel: This type of sales funnel focuses on driving direct bookings through the hotel’s website. It typically involves creating an engaging website with enticing visuals, compelling content, and a user-friendly booking process. The funnel may include tactics such as targeted online advertising, search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, and email campaigns to drive traffic to the website and encourage direct bookings.
  2. OTA (Online Travel Agency) Funnel: This sales funnel leverages online travel agencies and booking platforms to attract potential guests. Hotels and resorts partner with popular OTAs to showcase their offerings and reach a wider audience. The funnel involves optimizing property listings on OTAs, offering competitive rates and packages, and using promotional tactics such as featured listings, discounts, and positive reviews to encourage bookings.
  3. Email Marketing Funnel: Email marketing is a powerful tool in the hospitality industry for nurturing leads and driving conversions. This type of sales funnel involves building an email list of interested prospects and sending targeted emails to engage and convert them. The funnel may include capturing email addresses through website opt-in forms, sending automated welcome sequences, sharing exclusive offers, providing personalized recommendations, and following up with abandoned bookings.
  4. Event or Group Sales Funnel: This sales funnel focuses on attracting and converting event organizers or group bookings for conferences, weddings, or other special occasions. The funnel may involve strategies such as showcasing event facilities and services, offering customized packages, providing dedicated event planners, and utilizing targeted advertising or partnerships with event planning organizations.
  5. Loyalty Program Funnel: This type of sales funnel is designed to engage and retain existing customers by encouraging repeat bookings and fostering loyalty. Hotels and resorts create loyalty programs that offer exclusive benefits, rewards, and personalized experiences to encourage guests to book directly and choose their property for future stays. The funnel involves promoting the loyalty program through various channels, communicating with program members regularly, and providing incentives for referrals and repeat bookings.

These are just a few examples of sales funnels used in the hospitality industry. The specific funnel(s) chosen by a hotel or resort depend on its marketing objectives, target audience, and overall business strategy.

Four Essential Steps in any Sales Funnel Apply to Hospitality

The four essential steps in any sales funnel are:

  1. Attracting interest with a compelling message,
  2. Building trust and credibility,
  3. Providing value, and
  4. Closing the sale.

In order to successfully complete each of these steps, businesses must first understand their buyer’s needs and desires. After establishing a connection with buyers, businesses must then provide them with what they need in a timely manner. Finally, once buyers have agreed to purchase something from you, it is important to ensure that the sale is completed satisfactorily.

Different Levels of a Sales Funnel

The sales funnel is a marketing tool that helps organizations understand the different levels of customer engagement and how to most effectively convert leads into customers.

There are six levels in the sales funnel: awareness, interest, likeability, commitment, purchase, and completion. At each level, organizations can improve their chances of converting leads into customers by creating a compelling message, using persuasive tactics, and providing helpful resources.

Measuring the Success with Each Step of the Sales Funnel

Measuring the success of each step in the sales funnel is crucial for evaluating the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and optimizing your strategies. Here are some key metrics and methods to measure the success of each step:

  1. Awareness:
  • Website traffic: Monitor the number of visitors to your website using tools like Google Analytics. Track the source of traffic (e.g., organic search, social media, paid advertising) to understand which channels are driving awareness.
  • Impressions and reach: For awareness campaigns, track the number of impressions and reach of your marketing materials across different channels to assess the visibility and exposure of your brand.
  1. Interest:
  • Engagement metrics: Analyze metrics like page views, time spent on page, bounce rate, and click-through rates to gauge the level of interest and engagement with your website content.
  • Social media metrics: Monitor likes, shares, comments, and follower growth on social media platforms to measure the level of interest and engagement with your social media posts and campaigns.
  1. Consideration:
  • Conversion rates: Track the percentage of visitors who progress from the interest stage to the consideration stage. This can be measured by analyzing the number of inquiries, email sign-ups, or downloads of brochures or guides related to your offerings.
  • Dwell time: Assess how long visitors spend on specific pages or content related to the consideration stage, indicating their level of interest and consideration.
  1. Decision:
  • Booking or conversion rates: Measure the percentage of visitors who make a booking or reservation. This can be tracked through your online booking system or reservations platform.
  • Abandonment rate: Analyze the rate at which potential guests abandon the booking process to identify any pain points or barriers that may be hindering conversions.
  1. Retention/Advocacy:
  • Repeat bookings: Track the percentage of guests who become repeat customers, indicating their level of satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Customer reviews and ratings: Monitor guest reviews and ratings on review platforms to gauge the level of guest satisfaction and advocacy.

It’s important to set specific goals and benchmarks for each stage of the sales funnel and regularly review and analyze the metrics to identify areas for improvement. By continuously monitoring and measuring the success of each step, you can make data-driven decisions and optimize your marketing efforts to increase conversions and overall business performance in the hospitality industry.

How can Sales Funnels be Implemented in the Hospitality Industry?

Implementing sales funnels in the hospitality industry involves a strategic approach to attract potential guests, engage them throughout their decision-making process, and convert them into paying customers. Here are some key steps to implement sales funnels in the hospitality industry:

  1. Define your target audience: Identify your ideal guests and understand their preferences, demographics, and booking behaviors. This will help you tailor your marketing efforts and messaging to resonate with them effectively.
  2. Create awareness: Develop a multi-channel marketing strategy to create awareness of your hospitality offering. This may include online advertising, social media campaigns, search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, influencer partnerships, and collaborations with relevant local businesses or travel agents.
  3. Drive traffic to your website: Your website serves as a central hub for potential guests to learn more about your hotel or services. Optimize your website for search engines, ensure it is user-friendly, and provide engaging content that showcases your unique selling points, amenities, and attractive visuals. Utilize calls-to-action and lead capture forms to capture visitor information for future marketing efforts.
  4. Nurture leads and build interest: Implement lead nurturing strategies to engage potential guests who have shown interest in your offering. This may involve targeted email marketing campaigns, personalized offers, blog content, and social media engagement. Provide valuable information, highlight guest testimonials, and showcase the benefits of staying at your property to keep potential guests engaged.
  5. Simplify the booking process: Make the booking process as easy and streamlined as possible. Optimize your online booking system to be user-friendly, mobile-responsive, and secure. Clearly display room rates, availability, and any special offers. Minimize the number of steps required to complete a booking and provide multiple payment options for convenience.
  6. Provide exceptional guest experiences: Deliver outstanding customer service and exceed guest expectations during their stay. This includes personalized interactions, prompt responses to inquiries, attention to detail, and ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience throughout their visit. Satisfied guests are more likely to become repeat customers and refer others to your property.
  7. Foster post-stay engagement: Stay connected with guests even after their stay. Implement post-stay email campaigns, request guest feedback, and encourage them to leave reviews on popular review platforms. Offer incentives for returning guests and promote loyalty programs to encourage repeat bookings.
  8. Analyze and optimize: Continuously monitor and analyze your sales funnel performance. Utilize analytics tools to track website traffic, conversion rates, and guest behavior. Identify areas for improvement and optimize your strategies and tactics based on data-driven insights.

By implementing these steps, you can effectively implement sales funnels in the hospitality industry and increase your chances of attracting and converting potential guests, while fostering guest loyalty and advocacy.

Build Sales Funnel for the Hospitality Industry

The hospitality industry is an exciting and growing sector. With increased demand for quality services, hotels and resorts are increasingly turning to sales funnels to help them reach their target market. Here are some tips on how to create sales funnels for the hospitality industry:

  1. Choose the right marketing tool. A sales funnel is only as effective as the marketing tool used to create it. Useful marketing tools include email campaigns, social media platforms, and website design templates.
  2. Choose the right target market. The hospitality industry has a variety of target markets that can be targeted through different sales funnel strategies. These markets include business travelers, vacationers, and weekend guests.
  3. Define your goals and objectives. Once you have determined your target market, you need to determine your goals and objectives for selling products or services through your sales funnel.

Does the AIDA Model Apply to Hospitality?

In the business world, there are many models for success. One of the most common models is known as the AIDA model: Acquisition, Interest, Desire, and Action. This model is often used when studying business because it is a simple way to understand how people interact with businesses.

The AIDA model has been used to study how people interact with hotels and restaurants. It has been found that people have different levels of interest in these businesses. People who are interested in a hotel or restaurant business will want to learn more about it and will be more likely to desire it. People who are not interested in a hotel or restaurant will not care about it and will not take any action.

The AIDA model of customer service is often used in the hospitality industry, but is it applicable to all aspects of customer service? Some would say no, while others would argue that it can be adapted to fit any type of service.

Which Part of the Sales Funnel Matters Most for Hospitality?

While each stage of the sales funnel is important in the hospitality industry, the decision stage holds particular significance. The decision stage is where potential guests have narrowed down their options and are ready to make a booking or reservation. It represents a critical point where your marketing efforts and the overall customer experience can make or break the conversion.

During the decision stage, potential guests are evaluating factors such as pricing, availability, amenities, location, and overall value. They may also consider guest reviews, recommendations, and the reputation of your property. This is the stage where they compare your offering against competitors and weigh the pros and cons before making a final decision.

To make the decision stage effective and increase conversions, consider the following:

  1. Clear and transparent pricing: Display your room rates, additional fees (if any), and any special offers or discounts in a clear and easily understandable manner. Avoid hidden costs or surprises during the booking process.
  2. Availability and convenience: Ensure that your availability calendar is up to date and accurately reflects the room inventory. Make the booking process easy and seamless, with a user-friendly online booking system that allows potential guests to select dates, choose room types, and customize their stay preferences.
  3. Compelling and persuasive content: Highlight your unique selling points, amenities, and value propositions. Showcase high-quality visuals, virtual tours, and detailed descriptions that effectively communicate the benefits of choosing your property. Use persuasive language to emphasize the value and memorable experiences guests can expect.
  4. Social proof and guest testimonials: Incorporate guest reviews and testimonials throughout the decision stage to build trust and credibility. Positive reviews and testimonials from satisfied guests can greatly influence the decision-making process.
  5. Responsive and personalized communication: Respond promptly to inquiries and provide personalized assistance during the decision-making stage. Be available through various communication channels such as phone, email, and live chat to address any questions or concerns potential guests may have.

By focusing on optimizing the decision stage of the sales funnel, you can increase the likelihood of potential guests choosing your property over competitors and converting them into paying customers. Providing a seamless, transparent, and persuasive experience during this stage can have a significant impact on the overall success of your hospitality business.


Sales funnels are a crucial tool for success in the hospitality industry. By implementing a well-designed sales funnel, hospitality businesses can effectively attract potential guests, engage them throughout their decision-making process, and ultimately increase bookings and revenue. From generating awareness to fostering guest loyalty, each stage of the sales funnel plays a pivotal role in driving conversions. By understanding and applying the principles outlined in this article, hospitality professionals can optimize their marketing strategies and create seamless customer journeys that lead to increased bookings and enhanced guest satisfaction.

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