Have you ever been at the office surfing the web peacefully. Then, accessing a website, suddenly your otherwise quiet room filled with music blasting from your speakers. Every single one of your colleagues looked – a knowing smile on their faces? I’m sure you have. And what did you do immediately – without even thinking? You hit the ‘back’ button of your browser. You could have tried to figure out how to work the usually well-hidden audio controls on the site. But you didn’t!
This is why hotels should not use audio on their websites. The only exception would be if the sound was set to mute and the user chooses to switch it on.
Audio on websites is intrusive. In a recent survey, 87% of web users said they found ads that play music or sound frustrating: The Harris Poll PDF. This, however, does not only apply to video ads – a recent annoying marketing trend (Publishers: don’t annoy users with audio).
Statistics show indisputably that people look for and book hotel rooms during the week. They do this from the office during their breaks or in between work, when no one looks at their screen. And they don’t want to be caught out. Not even by the smoothest, atmospheric music you may think is essential to selling your stylish hotel. Once they’ve hit the ‘back’ button, you have most likely lost them forever.
Is audio really worth risking that?