Remember here, it’s not just about getting visits to the website. It’s about getting quality traffic that books. Let’s see how to do this.
Serve Good Content
The foundation of any digital strategy is content. And in an era where users are overwhelmed by content, the way to get a cut through, get noticed online (via search rankings), and improve click-through to your website is creating content that is unique and will interest your audience. Think out of the box and beyond the four walls of your property when creating content.
Most importantly, you need not be the only one creating content for your website. Smart hoteliers will get the guests involved. That’s called UGC – User Generated Content – the most authentic and saleable kind of content available.
Become a Storyteller
Extending the point above, you need to tell a story – your story, the story of your location, and the people around you. In fact, other people’s story is a great way to engage a wider audience and build more local advocates.
SEO SEO SEO
It’s not just a gimmick. SEO optimization is a great way to drive quality traffic to your website. However, SEO is not an overnight results generator. It’s more of a long term stable traffic earner.
Face it. From Facebook and Google to your OTAs, they’re all commercial businesses. To get ahead on any of these platforms, it is important to have paid presence. However, given the level of targeting most of these platforms offer, you can make your dollar go a lot longer. And measure it to see where the ROI is highest.
Said it before and won’t stop being an advocate of social channels. Being social is more than just posting twice a week to all your channels. It’s about engaging with your users and creating or sharing content that will get your audiences talking on your owned channels.
Pro tip: With Facebook’s algorithm change, you’d benefit by creating posts where people engage more on the platform – so fewer link posts. Remember, you can always retarget the engagers with a sponsored message.
Engage on Review Sites
Participate in conversations and even start new ones where relevant and linked to your location. Goes without saying that responding to your online reviews is important, and a great way to promote traffic to your website.
Offer Deals to Select Groups
Your OTA commitments probably don’t allow you to promote lower than published rates with them. However, you can use emails and loyalty program members to push deals to selected users. In addition to the price cut, package deals are also a great way to attract eyeballs.
Build a Website That Attracts and Retains Users
No amount of promotions will help if your website doesn’t deliver a great experience. Your website must be mobile-friendly – makes sense given more than 50% of search traffic now comes from mobile devices. It must load fast – 53% of visits are abandoned if a website takes longer than three seconds to load according to a Google Study.
Once technically up to spec, your website must be visually stunning. Less is more seems to be the philosophy these days. In the world of travel, nothing sells better than a good image or video. Make sure your website has plenty of them.
Your website should also be easy to navigate, make sure the booking button is easily reached and try to include features such as WatchMyRate that improves user stickiness.
Use Social Proof
Use your online reviews to your advantage. Scream from the rooftop about them. People need to know what others think of your property – it drives conversions quicker than most other content types. Employ tools such as ReviewMinder to stay on top of what people are saying about you.