Maximising Conversions from Third-Party Wedding Venue Directories

Written by Emma Hla
“Your listing is a starting point, an introduction, and couples will look at many touchpoints while considering your venue.”

In the competitive world of wedding venues, it’s common to feel that success hinges solely on the number of leads pouring in, but as enquiries shrink, instead of focusing exclusively on increasing numbers, it’s perhaps time to optimise your lead nurturing process.

In this feature, we’ll talk about converting enquiries from third-party wedding venue directories into the next stage of your sales journey—whether this is a showround or a confirmed booking. By fine-tuning your approach and maximising the potential of existing leads, you can unlock a higher conversion rate and propel your venue business.

Craft an Engaging Directory Listing

If we focus on the leads generated through your wedding venue directory, the conversion journey begins with a compelling directory listing.

  • Ensure your venue’s description is captivating, highlighting its unique features, amenities, and any additional services you offer. You might want to read this feature: Crafting Compelling Copy For Your Wedding Venue.
  • When looking at your introductory description, don’t lead with specific awards, as this can soon become very generic for couples browsing search results. Of course, the key is to stand out. We know most of our couples don’t put an emphasis on awards at this early stage. Instead, they want to learn more about you, so think ‘Wildflower Meadows’ and ‘Accommodation for 60 guests’ rather than ‘Best Barn Venue in [insert your location here]. ‘
  • Use high-quality, professional images and film that showcase the venue’s beauty and versatility. Remember, the first impression is crucial to capturing potential clients’ attention. This article might be helpful for an in-depth image analysis.
  • The listing should include key qualifying details such as price ranges and an understanding of what this price includes – value for money is key to all couples, no matter the budget.
  • When adding what’s included, this isn’t the space to go into granular detail. A cake knife, disco ball, or chair cover is not required; the couple wants to know if the price includes accommodation, multiple nights, tables/chairs/décor, and catering options.
  • The filters that your venue is found under in a venue search are key. If you’re not using the relevant filters, you’ll either a) not be showing up in the right searches and missing out on potential couples or b) cause confusion and frustration by saying you’re one thing and yet don’t offer this when the couple enquire. An excellent example is saying you’re flexible with catering on the listing and then saying you have an approved caterer list when enquiring. This is wasting your time and the couple’s time, and it’s a wasted lead.
  • Finally, reviews and testimonials will add confidence to your listing.

Now, be honest: when did you last log in and check or update your listings?

Further reads: How to work with Wedding Directories and Blogs

Your website

When we qualify venues for our platform, we will always check a venue’s website to see how visual and sales-driven it is. Most couples will want to look at a venue’s website before enquiring, so if they click through from a listing or open a new tab in Google, your website must nurture those leads and be able to guide the couple to the next stage.

Whether they’re getting in touch to request a brochure or pricing, check availability, or book a showround, your online retail space needs to show couples how to have their dream wedding with you and what they should do next to make that happen. If your website doesn’t do this, the referrals you receive from your third-party listings will immediately go cold, and you’ll lose the possible return on your marketing investment.

Further reads: 8 Common Mistakes Wedding Venues Make on Their Websites

Prompt and Personalised Responses

Speed matters when responding to enquiries. Couples often reach out to multiple venues, so being prompt sets you apart. Aim to reply within 24 hours, if not (much) sooner. Personalise your response by addressing the couple by their names and referencing specific details they mentioned in their enquiry. This shows attentiveness and care.

Within the response, add links to brochures and pricing and a link to book a showround appointment. Making this next step super quick and easy is perfect. Personally, if I can book online, whether it’s a restaurant booking, a beauty appointment or even a vet check-up for my little Yorkie, I will always opt to do this via a booking system rather than email or call (and I’m a very, very old millennial!).

After you’ve sent an email, and if they’ve given you their mobile number, follow up with a WhatsApp message to say thank you and that all requested details have been sent by email. This adds another route for staying in touch with couples and may provide an easier way for couples to respond or ask further questions.

Answer All Questions Thoroughly

A couple’s initial enquiry may contain questions about availability, pricing, capacity, catering options, etc. Take the time to answer each query thoroughly and concisely. Clear, informative responses will build trust and show your interest and commitment to their wedding.

Offer Virtual Tours and Consultations

With remote viewing becoming more prevalent and a vital sales tool during the pandemic, a virtual tour can provide a realistic and immersive experience. Additionally, schedule virtual consultations to address any further questions and concerns. This doesn’t have to be a formal Zoom appointment; instead, use WhatsApp or Facetime if it provides a more convenient option for you and the couple. Finding desk time can feel challenging, but we’re always close to our mobiles! This personalised touch helps create a stronger connection between the couple and your venue.

Further reads: Marketing During Economic Challenges

Showcase Testimonials and Reviews

Social proof is powerful in convincing potential clients to choose your venue. Feature testimonials, reviews, and success stories across your listings and your website/social media from previous couples who celebrated their weddings at your venue. Positive experiences shared by others will instil confidence and provide reassurance.

Use reviews that say more than just a simple thank you. Venue searchers want to hear about other couples’ experiences, what they loved, and what worked well. Use testimonials that name your team for an added personal touch.

Incentivise and Offer Customisable Packages

Consider offering special incentives to couples who express interest in your venue. This could be exclusive offers, complimentary services, or flexible packages that can be customised to suit their preferences and budget. Customisation allows couples to envision their dream wedding at your venue.

Tip! ‘Offers’ don’t necessarily mean discounting. If your venue allows, adding a complimentary stay for the couple on the wedding night, a glass of toasting fizz for each guest, or something experiential for their first anniversary are great options that add value without compromising your brand.

Follow Up Thoughtfully

Be encouraged if you receive an immediate response after your initial contact. Some couples may take a little longer to consider their options (especially in this economic and political climate) or consult with other decision-makers. Follow up thoughtfully, reminding them of your venue’s unique qualities and your commitment to making their special day unforgettable. Again, ensure those links to book appointments are in your follow-up comms.

Stay Active on Social Media

Maintain an active presence on social media to engage with potential clients and showcase your venue’s recent events and updates. Many couples will have initially discovered you on a third-party platform and may now be in the ‘stalk’ part of the venue search, where they follow or deep-dive into your business and brand on social platforms.

Take a moment to really look at your feed; what does it show? Are you sharing various images that showcase your venue’s spaces, ethos, personality and, with your marketing hat on, your ideal couples? If your feed is full of bold graphics, offers, and seasonal discounts, you will not be talking to the couples using our platform. So consider your target audience and look at your venue competitors to see how they use their social feeds to stand out.

Respond promptly to any comments and direct messages, even if this points an enquiring couple to your email address or contact form; this will build trust and foster relationships.

Provide Transparent Pricing

While couples often have varying budgets, transparency about your pricing structure helps them understand what to expect. You should avoid hidden fees and be upfront about what is included in your pricing. This transparency builds credibility and prevents any unpleasant surprises later.

Create a Seamless Booking Process

Streamline the booking process to minimise hurdles between the initial enquiry, showround, and confirmed booking. Utilise online booking tools or software that allows couples to book a visit, reserve their date and make payments securely and conveniently.


You might have noticed that many of these points are focused on something other than the third-party listing. What you’re doing as a business and a brand outside of this is equally important; your listing is a starting point, an introduction, and couples will look at many touchpoints while considering your venue. These all need to be regarded as part of the bigger conversion picture.

By implementing these strategies, you can significantly increase the likelihood of converting enquiries from third-party wedding venue directories into confirmed bookings. Remember, every interaction with potential clients is an opportunity to showcase the beauty and uniqueness of your venue, making their special day truly extraordinary.

Happy converting!

Ghosting: How to Handle Unresponsive Couples

Ghosting, suddenly cutting off all communication without explanation, has unfortunately become standard in various industries, including the wedding venue business.

Dealing with couples who ghost after expressing initial interest can be frustrating for venue owners, who invest time and effort in crafting personalised responses and providing information. While it’s essential not to take ghosting personally, handling this situation professionally and thoughtfully is crucial.

Firstly, ensure your listing and brochures offer key qualifying tools such as clear pricing and up-to-date key info.

If a couple has enquired and received additional information, follow up a few days after your initial response, offering a gentle nudge to check if they need any further assistance or information. If you are still waiting to receive a response after this follow-up, consider sending a final follow-up (email and WhatsApp) message expressing your understanding of their busy schedules and reiterating that you remain available to assist them whenever they are ready. Include links to Calendly or other booking software so they can quickly and easily book a showround with you without entering an email dialogue.

Maintaining a courteous and patient approach will reflect positively on your venue’s customer service, regardless of the couple’s ultimate decision. Remember that circumstances change, and some couples might re-engage after some time. Keep your lines of communication open and continue focusing on providing an exceptional experience to all potential clients who enquire about your wedding venue.

A couple usually takes around three months to choose, view and book a venue, so consider this when scheduling follow-ups – don’t nudge too soon, and don’t leave it too late. Utilise CRM software to send automated but personable follow-ups.

If a couple does respond and won’t be moving forward, it’s a perfect opportunity to request feedback about their decision. They may offer some insights, or you might be ghosted again… but it’s an excellent opportunity to learn and review.

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