As a hotel, your number one goal is to get more bookings.
The more bookings you get, the more you can increase your overall revenue. Bookings are going to be your bread and butter as a hotel, even if you have other viable revenue streams.
So, it stands to reason you should take advantage of your hotel website to increase bookings. Here are several tactics you can use to do just that.
Use SEO & Local SEO For A Stream Of Ongoing Website Hits
Every hotel should have a documented SEO strategy.
SEO takes time to work, but the long-term benefits far outweigh the relative obscurity you’ll have to endure for a time.
By choosing your keywords wisely, adding new content on a regular basis (i.e. with a blog), keeping your loading speeds down, and ensuring mobile friendliness, you can cover most of your SEO bases.
Though I can’t cover every aspect of SEO and local SEO here, I’ll offer several high-value tips to help you rank in search:
- Focus on longtail keywords. Generic terms like “New York hotels” are highly competitive and difficult to rank for. A term like “affordable log cabin style lodging in Houston” are more likely to drive traffic to your site early on.
- Plan out your website hierarchy. Pages and blog categories can quickly grow out of control, making your site’s structure cluttered and convoluted. Google prefers a logical and simple hierarchy (i.e. www.myhotel.com/rooms/ocean-view/king). Planning out the structure of your website in advance should help you keep it simple.
- List your website on review sites, directories, travel sites, and so on. Claim your listing on Google My Business, Yelp, TripAdvisor, Expedia, Yellowpages, Orbitz, Foursquare, and others.
- Create and distribute valuable content. Use long tail keywords in the titles of your blog posts. Publish new content on a regular schedule (it doesn’t need to be every day, especially if you can’t keep up that type of schedule), and distribute it to popular social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and others.
3 Places You Can Promote Your Hotel Website Online
There’s no denying that there are plenty of review sites, online directories, travel sites, and other places to promote your hotel website online.
Naturally, some are more recognized and valuable than others. So, here are three good places to start promoting your site on:
- Google My Business: Surely you are already aware that Google is the top search engine on the planet. Though your target audience may be able to find you through other means, Google is going to be first on the list of places they go to discover and learn about you. So, if you’re going to prioritize any site, it should be Google. Creating an account on Google+ could also prove beneficial.
- Yahoo Small Business: Though it has been obscured by search giant Google, Yahoo remains a powerhouse online. Yahoo Local allows you to increase your visibility online and control your listings across over 60 directories for less than $1 per day. Yahoo Small Business should not be ignored as you look to boost your SEO and presence across various sites.
- Yelp: Yelp ranks in the top 11 websites on the internet, making it a valuable place to market any business. Yelp’s primary value proposition is that it allows customers to review and write about their experience at your business. So, when people are researching their options, they’ll often turn to Yelp to see if it’s a service they want to utilize. As a business, you’ll want to keep an eye on feedback and respond to negative comments, but beyond the ongoing maintenance work required, Yelp is sure to become a key piece of your marketing.
Get In Front Of Potential Guest With Paid Social Media (E.G. Facebook Ads)
I’ve shared briefly about the importance of social media, which can enhance your SEO.
But social media advertising should not go ignored either, especially if you’ve got a budget for it.
Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or otherwise, most sites offer powerful and affordable online advertising solutions for businesses.
One of the great things about social media advertising is that you can easily target people who are likely to require your services, such as by age, gender, location, interests, behaviors, and more. This isn’t to suggest your ads will convert 100% of the people you reach, but because the cost of advertising is so low, even if a single-digit conversion rate can be quite profitable.
The hardest part about advertising on social media is crafting an ad that works. You need a headline and an accompanying image (or video) that’s eye-catching and engaging. It needs to draw people in, so they’ll click on your link or take a moment to learn more about your offer.
Social media sites generally provide you with plenty of data pertaining to ad performance. By keeping an eye on this and continually optimizing your ad, you’ll eventually come up with a winning formula. So, don’t fear wasting a bit of money upfront. Most advertisers do.
Keep in mind that you can promote your special offers and discounts using social media advertising. With that, I’m going to share more about discounts and other goodies.
Offer Discounts & Other Goodies On Your Website (& Tell Existent Guest About Them)
When you’re looking to drive more traffic to your website, you must keep that goal at the forefront.
What this means is that it’s easy to get caught up in the tactics without thinking about the strategy.
For instance, it’s all well and good to build your social media following. But this should be with the end goal of generating traffic for your website in mind. You can offer discounts and goodies on social media. But when you promote them, your followers should be directed to your website to claim the offers. That supports your bigger goal of marketing your site.
Most importantly, you want to give people a reason to visit your website.
So, your website should be the holding place for all your discounts and goodies. As your visitors get used to going to your website to claim them, your traffic will increase.
Another great strategy is to tell your existing guests about your offers. This is a significant value-add in the eyes of the guest, because they assume you want to squeeze as much money as you possibly can out of them. If they’re given a chance to claim a discount, they’ll see you as an honest and caring business. You’ll create a great reputation for yourself by going about things in this way.
Get your guests and visitors in the habit of going to your website to view the latest special offers.
Ways To Market Your Hotel Website Conclusion
Marketing your website is just one piece of the booking puzzle. Be sure to make it easy for people to book a stay on your website. Have clear call to actions and prominent buttons. Include a form on the homepage. Do what you can to draw attention to bookings.
Then, make the booking process as simple as possible. The less friction, the fewer clicks (or taps), the better. You’ll increase your chances of getting the sale if you reduce the number of steps the prospective guest has to take to get a confirmation.