Website design and Digital Marketing delivery for Cambridge’s first centrally located Aparthotel

Industry: Hotels and Hospitality

Location: Cambridge, UK

Goals:

Rebranding and relaunching the hotel as an aparthotel
Reducing reliance on online travel agents
Create a unique website for Cambridge

Background

The Regent Apart Hotel in Cambridge approached Big Bear to create them a new website for their business relaunch. Based on our previous work with hotels and hospitality, The Regent were keen to work with us to produce a modern website that represented their aparthotel business that included integrated online booking engines and also the ability for the website to be changed quickly if needed.

The Regent hotel was built in the 1850’s and has been a recognisable landmark in Cambridge city centre ever since. It was once part of Downing college and has been a hotel since the 1950’s.

In June 2021 the hotel was given a new lease of life by the City Stay hotel group who introduced the Regent as the very first city centre located apart hotel in Cambridge.

Challenge:

The challenge with any hotel or hospitality business is the need to stand out from the crowd and also to represent the business in the best possible light. There is also always a need to drive new website traffic and to attract new guests who may have never stayed at the aparthotel before. 

Solution:

Our solution was to design a truly unique website for The Regent that looked unlike anything else in the city. There were good brand guidelines to work with which dealt with the messaging and direction for the brand.

The website design really represents the hotel and has since been copied by other Cambridge businesses who have adopted the archway image style and colours. 

The website was built in WordPress which allowed us to give the client the flexibility that they were after and helped negate the need to pay hundreds of pounds every time they wanted to make a change.

Driving Website Traffic

The website was built with speed, performance and user experience in mind which allowed us to deliver a fast website that please the users as well as Google. This helped us as part of a custom SEO strategy which sees us work monthly to produce traffic driving content which converts into sales. 

We also were charged with other digital marketing activities including setting up and running the Google Ads account. Working from zero we produced a winning PPC campaign strategy which helps deliver recurring revenue and traffic for the website.

Results:

Having the insights between SEO and PPC allows us to deliver well targeted campaigns using a deep understanding of all the data that we have to hand. In turn these digital marketing activities drive thousands of potential guests to the site each month, meaning more direct sales and less reliance on online travel agents meaning more profit and an increase in bookings. 

All of the digital marketing activities combined with an easy to use website has led The Regent to go from strength to strength since reopening. 

We continue to work with the hotel in order to maximise effort and spend and reduce the need for the business to hire in-house marketing teams. 


Lessons learned:

Whenever you do something different and are daring enough to do so things go two ways, they either don’t get adopted by people or visitors fall in love and companies replicate what you are doing.

The latter is always a true sign that you are seen as a leader in your field and doing something that others crave for themselves. Imitation really is the best form of flattery. 

Conclusion:


The Regent we’re a pleasure to work with and by trusting us to deliver not only a stunning website but also a full digital marketing campaign for both SEO and PPC we were able to create them a digital asset that will be working hard for the business for years to come. 

Recommendations:

Our recommendation for any business looking to create a new website is to find an agency that understands your business and fully understands what goals you are looking to achieve. A successful project (website, SEO or PPC) starts with you knowing your audience and customer base and also the position that you fill in the marketplace. A great looking website falls short if the content and messaging isn't quite right.Also never rely just on one marketing channel. The combination of SEO and Google ads works great especially when everything is done under one roof so that the delivery team understands all data and can make decisions based on a holistic view.

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