What does a Website Award do for your Hotel?

Paying for a pat on our own back to get a Trophy – not anymore!

What does a Website Award do for your Hotel? Nothing.

Yes, you read that correctly.  Let’s back track a bit.

‘Old school’ style awards honor process and procedure – you enter your work product to an organization or committee to be judged by a panel, hopefully of your peers.  They choose the best submission according to a pre-selected list of criteria. A winner is chosen and ceremoniously, a physical award is given.

This process costs money. Entrants have always paid a fee to be considered for an award.  There are administrative costs that need to be covered for the award organizer.  Makes sense to me.

The benefits of winning an award, gives your business:

  • Credibility
  • Validation
  • Peer acknowledgement
  • Reputation builder
  • Promote your achievement & leverage ranking

Great – did you notice something?

The benefits of winning the award are for the company that created your website.  What does it do for your hotel? Perhaps it is a sign of prestige? The company you hired did such a good job, an award was won.  Ok, let’s go with that one for now.  I would agree that it would be prestigious … if it were based on transparency and true competition.

I promise, I am getting somewhere with this rant.

Over the years, Lodging Interactive has won many awards for website development, design, etc. We’ve always paid to enter into the numerous “competitions”, as we should.  Whenever we won an award, we were asked to buy the award. Yes, buy the physical award.

It seemed odd. I would have thought the cost of the award would have been collectively part of the entrance fee. It is the same for numerous industry awards. We kept paying to enter and then paying when we won.

During a weekly manager’s meeting, the discussion arose about the awards. Were we paying to play? Are we paying to give ourselves a pat on the back that we are good? It didn’t feel honest. It didn’t feel right. On further thought about this subject, could it be that the cost of the physical award was not collectively covered in the entrance fee because there weren’t three awards to give but hundreds?

Ok, I’ll give that a moment to sink in.

Not everyone is a winner. I believe competition is healthy. I love trophies and awards. Paying for the privilege of winning an award that is part of our job seems a bit self-serving since my company reaps the benefits of that award and not the hotel.

I would rather that the efforts of our labor, and your dollars, be spent on an amazing website that would win an award of results: Rankings, Conversions, ROI, Organic Search Results, Visual Presentation, Easy Navigation and so on.

From now on at Lodging Interactive, no purchase is necessary to build a winner.  We win when our clients say we win. We will not be entering any more awards programs.

The money that would have been spent will be repurposed to charity or back to the clients.

And the winner is…