Venues: Consumer Confidence Returns
Figures released on 4th May 2021 show that consumer confidence is returning. We have seen an incredible increase in wedding search traffic compared to this time last year (+83.1%) and also in comparison to 2019 (+40.7%), with interest in wedding venues nearly doubled, at 97.6% .
Consumer confidence is back
Page views are up in all areas and there are other significant markers to show that couples are ready to book!
Many couples started their wedding research earlier this year but extended lockdowns made it hard to commit to booking. Since the new year, we have seen a consistent increase in enquiries comparable with pre-pandemic levels, then a sudden 136.5% leap in enquiries in April with couples finally able to book viewings and confirm their booking having completed their wedding research online.
High levels of enquiries in our bridal, beauty and mother of the bride sections are a strong indication that many of these couples are booking venues for this year.
Wedding venue searches increase
Wedding venue searches (and subsequently enquiries) have increased across the board. In April 2021, interest in wedding venues saw a 97.6% increase.
We have seen a clear increase in couples searching by price range, so we encourage all venues to give an indication of their pricing to ensure these high-quality leads come to you.
Marquee weddings: a stand out trend
A notable insight into our April reporting saw many couples searching for venues and spaces that could host a marquee wedding. This search was up by 164.38% from last year.
Outdoor focused and marquee weddings will be a trend for 2021 and 2022. If you are a venue that can host marquee weddings, if you have a walled garden or attractive grounds, please check that your listing filters as well as your wording and photos make it really clear to couples.
Why couples are confident
We have now had multiple, consecutive positive government announcements, each one further reducing the restrictions on weddings across the UK, combined with the consistent messaging to encourage couples to book fast due to demand (on the website, on social media and through videos). This has clearly helped with consumer confidence.
From the experts
We have all worked so hard over many months to ensure that confidence remains high and that couples are ready to book as soon as they know their wedding can happen. It is great to see that finally happening.
There are thousands of couples in the pipeline who understand that now it is safe to book, they will need to do so quickly. They have spent lockdown doing their wedding research and now, they know what they want and will move fast.
How can you maximise the benefit?
Although we expect to see above average enquiry levels for the rest of the year while the backlog gradually clears, the greatest opportunities will be over the next few weeks with couples racing each other to book the remaining peak dates.
- Make it as easy as possible for them to identify you as the right venue by including key points such as venue capacity or if you have space for a marquee.
- List available dates on late availability pages.
- Check you cancellation and postponement policy will protect you while reassuring new couples.
- Ensure that at least one of your online reviews is recent. It doesn’t need to be from a wedding that has taken place yet; kind words from a couple you have helped to postpone will be just as effective.
- Be available! Respond to email enquiries fast, redirect your phone to your mobile, fit in viewings when you can. Make the most of the boom in enquiries while it lasts.
Watch out for supply chain “roadblocks” so they can be swiftly cleared. Whether it is a lack of registrars or late changes in guidance, we are here to help you find solutions to ensure the maximum number of weddings can take place this year.