November 11, 2020
By Megan Boley

What’s one of the first things most couples do after getting engaged? They start browsing the internet for wedding ideas. Whether it’s through Pinterest, Instagram, or via a search engine like Google, couples interested in your venue will likely check out your website before anything else. Needless to say, this presents a huge opportunity to showcase your property and your skills at hosting unforgettable weddings. In this blog post, we cover wedding venue website design ideas and tips to help you create a site that stands out, provides an exceptional user experience, and shows your wedding venue in the best light.

Explore 12 must-know wedding venue website design ideas and tips:

1. Make SEO a priority. 

Of course, having a top-notch wedding venue website only means so much if prospective customers can't find it. So before diving too deep into actual wedding venue website design ideas and tips, we're using Nos. 1 and 2 to explore the promotion aspect of it all, starting with search engine optimization (SEO). By optimizing your site, you have a better chance of getting in front of couples — and planners — as they’re looking for wedding venues.

Research top-performing keywords in your market and find out what prospective customers who come to your website are searching for. SEMrush, for example, is a tool that allows you to conduct keyword research, audit your site and see where you can improve, and analyze your competitors’ strategies.

Get started boosting your wedding business today!

Once you’ve chosen your keywords, include them in the relevant copy on your website and publish additional content/pages that include these keywords. But remember: You’re writing for humans and not search engines. Create content that is helpful, but don’t overstuff it with keywords to the point that it negatively affects the user experience.

In addition to keyword research and other on-page optimizations, assuring your site loads quickly and implements responsive design for mobile are other important factors influencing your site’s search ranking. Don’t forget, too, about behind-the-scenes SEO like title tags and meta descriptions, optimizing images and including alt descriptions, including internal links to other pages on your website, and getting backlinks to your site (Google sees those as votes of confidence). We go into greater detail on all of this in our wedding venue marketing guide.

2. Invest in paid ads.

For pay-per-click (PPC) ads, you as the advertiser pay every time someone clicks on your ad. Researching long-tail keywords will help you zero in on your audience and give you an idea of the search terms customers use to find your website. Then, use these keywords to craft compelling and effective copy for your ads. To get the most out of your paid advertising budget, spread it out by choosing a large number of lower-traffic keywords, rather than going for a few high-traffic ones. Google Ads is a great place to start – this guide from HubSpot gives a deep dive into the platform and best practices for success.

With social media ads, the first step is to determine which platform is the most popular with the audience you want to reach. Take a look at which of your social media platforms has the most engagement ­– that’s where you’ll want to place your ads. They can be photo or video ads that appear in Facebook or Instagram stories, collections and carousels that appear in feeds, or promoted Pins on Pinterest, for example. Pro tip: Pinterest is incredibly popular with couples

Paid ad platforms will also allow you to do retargeting – or remarketing – to re-engage with people who visited your site. If the user has cookies enabled, retargeting will show your ads to them on the next site or mobile page they visit, which gives you a greater chance for increasing your conversion rates.

3. Design your wedding venue website with lead generation in mind.

Designing your website with lead generation in mind means a few key things, according to SEO and digital marketing expert Neil Patel. He advises including a phone number, as it lends you credibility. Even if your potential customer doesn’t call, it makes you more trustworthy and legitimate in their eyes. Including photos and testimonials will also boost your credibility. Have clear CTAs throughout your website, as well as forms for initial contact and RFPs. If you’ve won awards, post the seals somewhere on your page, like in the header or footer of the site.

CTA to Ebook: How to Maintain a Resilient Weddings Business

For example, Tin Roof Barn's site is charming, rustic, and whimsical – a perfect reflection of the venue. The site is organized into logical and clear tabs that make it easy to navigate, each with a contact button leading to a form fill at the bottom. Their robust photo gallery and integrated Instagram feed provide a plethora of photos, so customers know exactly what the venue looks like. The Q&A section covers everything from pricing to what is included to specific date availability. 

4. Create a digital brochure.

Post digital PDFs and brochures on your website with more information about the venue, an outline of your offerings, and detailed explanations of each package and pricing. This is a good way to provide this information without plastering it on a landing page or burying it in a tab on your website. If you make the content gated, you can capture that lead information in exchange for the download. In addition to making your venue look professional and streamlined, a digital brochure or PDF is a great piece of marketing content that also provides the customer with the vital information they want.

Your brochure can be as long or as short as you want. This example from Grouse Mountain Lodge is on the shorter side, but it still includes the essential information like pricing, inclusions, and a few photos. This hefty brochure from Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards is more like a magazine, with a myriad of photos from past weddings in all four seasons, photos of the venue spaces with specifications, a robust FAQ page, sample menu, and detailed pricing. Every venue is different — choose the approach that makes the most sense for you.

5. Ensure that your wedding venue website uses clear and descriptive copywriting.

While photos and other visuals are essential when it comes to wedding venue website design, don’t let the copywriting fall by the wayside. The words you use to describe your venue are just as important as the photos you select. Find a balance between painting a picture of your event space with colorful words and including the nitty-gritty details like price and what’s included in a package.

Pictures are worth a thousand words, so also describe what’s in the pictures with creative and practical language. If you have a stone terrace overlooking the vineyard, mention it. If your cavernous ballroom also features exposed wood beams and warm chandeliers, say so. If your rustic barn boasts floor-to-ceiling windows with views of the surrounding woodlands, write it down! Show it in a photo and say it with your words, so there can be no confusion, discrepancies, or misinterpretations of what exactly you have to offer.

Antrim 1844, a historic wedding venue in Taneytown, Maryland, uses a concise but descriptive writing style for its wedding page. Each location for the ceremony, reception, and cocktail hour has its own photo with a short blurb that describes the setting and a few important specs.

6. Link to active social media accounts.

In addition to search rankings, social media plays an increasingly significant role in venue discovery. Fifty-six percent of couples who responded to a recent SkiftX survey said social media platforms were most useful in their wedding venue search. Additionally, Brides’ 2018 study found that 82 percent of brides turn to social media — particularly Pinterest and Instagram — instead of wedding magazines for inspiration.

In order to attract these couples, it’s of course important to post regularly to your social media accounts and engage with and build an audience there. Encourage couples who wed at your venue to post their own wedding photos and tag your venue so that they will show up on your profile. Then, integrate your social media accounts into your wedding venue website design, either with links or an embedded feed.

It’s common to put social links and icons in the footer of a website, but White Laurel Estate in Dawsonville, Georgia puts their social media links front and center. Their Facebook and Instagram icons float atop an ambient video on their homepage. Nella Terra Cellars in Sunol, California integrates their social media in a different way – their site has a scrolling bar of their Instagram feed embedded at the bottom of their homepage. 26 Bridge in Brooklyn, New York pulls in their Instagram feed in a widget toward the bottom of their homepage, right underneath a photo gallery set up like an Instagram grid.

7. Post reviews and testimonials on your site.

Online reviews and photos play a valuable role in how millennials and Gen Z customers seek out wedding venues and vendors. A survey from BrightLocal found that nearly three out of four 18- to 34-year-olds “regularly” or “always” read reviews of local businesses. A similar percentage said they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations “always,” “as long as there are multiple reviews,” or “if the reviews seem authentic.”

This goes along with transparency. People want to know what they’re buying, and they want to know that they’re getting their desired experience. Ask previous couples or planners for a testimonial of their wedding experience at your venue, or send follow-up emails to previous couples or planners asking for them to submit a Yelp or Google Business review, which can then be integrated into your website.

26 Bridge has a website tab specifically for testimonials. Customers can scroll through a few at the top, or go to the venue’s Yelp page which is linked right below. Sage Lodge in Pray, Montana features testimonials from recent guests right on their homepage. For even more, they have a dedicated stories gallery with photos and testimonials that customers can scroll through like a social media feed.

8. Use high-quality images and videos.

Today, couples seeking out wedding venues are very visually focused. It’s essential for venues to showcase their strongest imagery (including video) to accurately portray the beauty of the space and its surroundings. Posting photos front and center on your website allows prospective customers to browse and determine if the venue is right for them – all without having to read anything.

Photos and videos should reflect the four seasons, different styles of weddings, and specific angles and features — such as the view from the reception hall, types of tables, and dancefloor — and be shared on Instagram and Pinterest, as well as on the venue website. Either use photos from real weddings that have taken place at your property, or stage photos so that you can orchestrate a venue shoot with marketing in mind to get the best angles and demonstrate your offerings in the best way.

The video you include on your site can be a promotional reel that showcases your venue and grounds, clips of previous weddings, or a VR tour that clients can browse at their leisure. Whatever form it takes, make sure you include video in some way. It allows couples to immerse themselves in your venue and experience it without having to be onsite.

Mountain House Estate in Cloverdale, California’s site is, across the board, an excellent example of wedding venue website design. The site has a tab for virtual tours – 3D and 360 – for different areas of its property, an integrated Instagram feed at the bottom of the page, an expansive photo gallery, and a blog, where they post thought leadership and venue-specific posts. Wild Basin Lodge in Allenspark, Colorado is another example of a wedding venue website with exceptional photography. This venue showcases it well, with professional-grade hero images that depict every aspect of the property. The homepage has an ambient video in the background and a short video walkthrough of the venue.

9. Give weddings their own tab.

If you’re a hotel, winery, restaurant, or other event venue of which weddings are just a part of your business, showcase your wedding offerings in a separate tab and section of your website. This will make for a more streamlined user experience and will help visitors find exactly what they’re looking for. And, having a designated tab and page on your site will help boost your chances of showing up in search when couples are looking for wedding venues. 

Within the weddings tab of your site, include all of your high-quality photos and videos, virtual tours or 360-degree photos, testimonials, links to your social accounts – or even pull in your Instagram feed in an integrated widget. Make sure, too, to list specific packages and services and what is included in each somewhere within the weddings section of your site. Have a CTA and a simple contact form to entice couples to reach out to you if they like what they see.

Castle Farms in Charlevoix, Michigan organizes their website tabs into the main categories for why people would want to visit their venue: meetings and events, wine, and weddings. Hovering over the weddings tab allows users to see all of the different options like photo gallery, rental and included items, and the different venues to choose from.

10. Be transparent.

Engaged couples today value transparency when it comes to pricing and communication in wedding planning, as well as other aspects of the process. It makes sense, given that millennials have come to expect transparency from brands and companies in general. A 2016 survey from Label Insight found that 94 percent of millennials surveyed were likely to remain loyal to brands that were completely transparent, with 56 percent saying they would be likely to remain a fan of such a brand for life.

Millennials especially do their research extensively online before they’ll reach out to a venue. Letting couples know upfront about what you can and cannot provide will save time during the sales process once the couple contacts you.

According to SkiftX’s survey, wedding couples seeking out venues online were often confused about the process for finding clear pricing options (26 percent), identifying venues within their budgets (27 percent), and viewing consistent information provided by each venue (24 percent). They also frequently found it difficult to compare features of different venues (21 percent) and reported wasting time looking at options outside of their price ranges (31 percent).

List your wedding packages with what they include and what they will cost. This doesn’t need to be the first thing visitors see on your landing page, but it does need to be accessible – so put it in a place that is easy to find. Providing this information early in their search process can improve conversion rates, establish a clear understanding and alignment for both the couple and venue, and help ensure that the most qualified leads are coming through the door.

To reach these generations in the wedding market today, hotels and special event venues would be wise to provide do-it-yourself planning options, options for personalization, packages within a range of budgets (but allow for opportunities for upselling), and transparency about pricing and communication.

Stand Ready Ranch, a private estate in Northern California, is straightforward with availability and pricing. The website has a designated tab for each, with the wedding package and cost delineated and a calendar showing available dates. Red Barn Ranch in Hopland, California embraces transparency in a different way. They want you to know the layout of the property and what you have access to when you book your wedding. Their homepage has an interactive map that provides an overview of the entire property, with pins labelling each part of the property, photo op spots with examples, and specs for each venue space.

11. Use your wedding venue website to position yourself as a partner and resource.

Position yourself as a thought leader and be the trusted resource couples can turn to when they have questions. A good way to start building your reputation is by is by publishing regular blog posts and informative articles about wedding planning tips and advice, like “How to select a wedding venue” or “Suggestions for wedding menus.” Write content that is helpful and solves a problem for your readers. By researching relevant keywords, you can find out what people who visit your site are looking for and construct content based around that.

On Hidden Greens Event Venue’s blog, they provide a mix of marketing and promotional content for their own venue as well as thought leadership content, like the benefits of indoor/outdoor wedding venues and a wedding planning timeline and checklist. Orting Manor in Orting, Washington posts timely blog articles on topics like postponing weddings due to COVID-19 or how to plan a wedding during COVID-19. Other topics are helpful and informative, like how to select a wedding venue and what kinds of things could affect your wedding budget.

12. Make it easy to get in touch.

Include easy and simple contact forms on your site and allow the customer to decide how they want to connect. Some prefer text or email, while others want a call. Millennials are very self-service oriented and they’re used to doing their own digital research. They’re less likely to want to call, so make sure all the information they’d need to make an informed decision is available on your site. If you’re able, implement a live chat feature on your site for those customers who want a quick answer to a question, but aren’t ready to pick up the phone yet.

Wychmere Beach Club in Harwich Port, Maine uses large, eye-grabbing hero images on its homepage, with an “Inquire Today” button right underneath. A few more scrolls take users through a photo grid of the different event space options, potential menus, and finally to an inquiry form-fill at the bottom, where only the name and email are required fields. This site makes it easy to get in touch while showing everything the venue has to offer, all from the homepage.

Put these wedding venue website design ideas and tips to good use today!

Want to learn more about how to start — and grow — your wedding business? We've got you covered. Explore the links below for everything you need to know.

Let us help you grow your wedding venue business!

Megan Boley

Megan Boley

Megan is a published web writer and editor with a passion for crafting stories. She specializes in planning and creating content across all platforms for brands and organizations, with a focus on demand generation.

In her free time, she's a voracious reader and a blue belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu.

5 Tips to Stay Ahead in Meetings and Events in 2024 correct image
5 Tips to Stay Ahead in 2024
Capture more group business in 2024 with our ultimate checklist

More from this collection

Subscribe to our newsletter