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What to do if a message is not performing as well as expected
What to do if a message is not performing as well as expected

Setting the right message goal, understanding performance issues and refining your message to improve its performance

Holly Groom avatar
Written by Holly Groom
Updated over a week ago

One of the best things about Triptease Targeted Messages is the opportunity they provide to experiment and test offers and ideas on your website visitors, without having to make complicated hard-coded changes to your website.

With such a wide range of message types available, and multiple ways to segment and target your audience, the possibilities of what you could create for your website are close to endless. But what should you do if you’ve set a message live and it’s not driving the kind of numbers you expected to see?

In this guide we’ll take a look at:

  • Setting the right goal for a message from the start

  • The reasons why a message might be underperforming on your website

  • How to refine and update a message to improve its performance

Setting the right goal for a message from the start

It’s important to be realistic about what kind of performance you expect website messaging to drive for your business, and to set a clear goal to measure a message against before you put it live.

Depending on your type of hotel, you may have a range of conversion goals for different target audiences and times of year. For each message you set up you’ll need to spend some time thinking about what kind of conversion uplift it can realistically drive, based on your understanding of your current customers.

If you’re aiming to increase bookings from an entirely new audience that has previously not driven much revenue for your business then be realistic about how much website messaging alone can do. If this message is part of a wider marketing campaign to increase the booking value of an audience that already converts well on your website, you can be a little more bold in terms of the numbers you expect to see.

The reasons why a message might be underperforming on your website

If you feel that you have set a realistic and achievable goal for a message but it’s still not hitting the numbers you were expecting to see there are a few checks you can do to make sure that the message is able to display for as many of your chosen segment of guests as possible.

The language of the message might not match the language of your website

If your website is available in multiple languages, you can create automatically translated versions of your messages to display on those versions on your website.

However, those language variant messages will only display if they match the language of a version of your website. This is because it provides a better experience for you website visitors to see all the elements of your online service in one consistent language. So if your website is in Spanish, your messages should be in Spanish too.

If you’ve tried to set up a message to target Spanish visitors and translated it into Spanish but your website is only available in English, with no Spanish version at all, then that message will never display.

The message may be being ‘blocked’ from appearing by other messages on the same page

If you've created multiple Targeted Messages for your website, there are some prioritization rules in place to ensure that your customer never sees too many messages all at the same time. Flooding a website user's screen with multiple, overlapping messages is not a great experience so we take steps to make sure that doesn't happen.

Because some messages appear in the same place on the page, so there are times when we have to prioritize by message type to avoid having two different overlapping messages. So, if a message is not performing as well as expected, it may be because there are other messages stopping it from appearing. Read more about how Triptease prioritizes message types, and then double check that you don't have two clashing message types on the same page.

The audience targeting of the message might be clashing with the targeting of another message

If you’ve set up several messages designed to target different types of customers, you may find that certain visitors to your website might trigger more than one message.

For example if you have a one message set to trigger for visitors in France and a different message set to trigger for visitors looking to book on a specific check-in date, it’s possible that one visitor would qualify to see them both.

So how do we decide which one they will see?

Firstly, we decide based on how specific your messages are. A campaign with more segmentations will be picked over one with fewer. For example, a message targeting visitors from France and last minute bookings, will be picked over a message with just check-in date targeting, in the case when both are valid.

In the case where two messages have the same number of segmentations, we’ve set some priority display rules for the various message segmentations you can choose from. That means that certain segments can ‘overrule’ others that have a lower priority.

Find out more about the order in which audience targeting specifications are prioritized, then double check the messages you have set up to see if your poorly performing message is being held back from appearing to the largest possible number of appropriate customers.

If it does turn out that the reason a message is under performing is the result of it clashing with another message type or audience targeting, you’ll need to do some prioritization of your own to decide which messages are the most important for your website visitors to see.

Pausing certain messages to allow a poorly performing message to have more opportunities to display to the right customers is a quick way to see if you can increase the performance of that message.

Refining and updating a message to improve its performance

If you’ve checked that there are no clashes and your message appears as frequently as possible for the right audiences, what else can you do to improve poor performance?

In this instance the issue may be more to do with the content of the message itself. Perhaps the offer you’re sharing is not exactly what this customer segment is really looking for? Maybe your imagery doesn’t catch their attention, or your headline isn’t fully conveying the value you’re offering them.

Here are some quick tips to help you refine and test small changes to your messaging to see if you can improve it.

Have you clearly conveyed the value of the offer in the headline?
If you’re offering a discount, upgrade or special offer make sure that’s clear in your headline. Most customers are only scanning your content so make sure you’ve made the value of booking directly easy to spot.

Have you added a relevant image that will appeal to your target audience?
Again, a customer quickly scanning the page is looking for certain visual clues that tell them they’ve come to the first place. If you’re targeting a person booking a family holiday with an offer for free children’s activities make sure that the image will catch their eye. Make it relevant to the offer the kind of content they're likely to be looking for, rather than a generic image of your hotel.

Does the call to action button on the message take the user to the right place - whether that’s your booking engine or a relevant page on your website? If they’re not going to your booking engine, does the page they land on make it really clear that they’ve come to the right place, with the same headline, images and offer details?

Try running a variant test to see if a different offer, headline, image or CTA button message can improve the message conversion rate. Targeted Messages’s variant testing feature allows you to test two variants of the same message and collect data on how they performed. This means you can experiment and test different ideas and theories about what might make your customers book. Remember that it’s important to only test one of these elements at a time though. That way you can have a greater degree of certainty that it is that one specific element that is helping to increase conversions. Find out more about how to set up a variant test or watch the video below to see a headline variant test being created.

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