The vast majority of hotel bookings are now made online so it is vital that hotel websites are easy to find on Google – which accounts for 80 per cent of internet searches – and other search engines.
Many hotel owners may choose to pay to boost their search engine ranking but there are some simple steps you can take to ensure your website is fully search engine optimised to organically boost your ranking before your start paying.
Pay attention to keywords
Put yourself in the shoes of your potential guests – what terms would they be searching when looking for accommodation in your area? Once you’ve given this some thought and compiled a list of likely key words and phrases, try to pepper these terms throughout your web copy so that it ranks higher for the relevant searches. But don’t overdo it – web copy that is too packed with keywords will not read well and will be penalised by Google.
Ensuring you are using the right key words is a case of trial and error and keyword research should be done on a regular basis with the key word list updated and expanded accordingly.
Try to target some keywords that are more specific or unusual because if you only use keywords that are too popular or general, they will be incredibly competitive.
Live and original content
A very effective way to push your website up the organic search engine rankings is by ensuring it has new and original content going up regularly. This is why so many business websites now include a ‘blog’ section. Uploading live content once or twice per month in the form of a short blog can have a huge impact on how high up the search results you appear.
The blogs do not need to be too long or wordy. Short updates about your company, advice pieces or relevant industry news can all make good blogs. Include the keywords in your blogs.
Generating inbound links
Inbound links are used by Google and other search engines as a main factor in determining the relevance of your site, so they are key to establishing good SEO. Inbound links carry more weight in Google’s page ranking than reciprocal links, when someone links to your site and you link back to them.
Setting up your social media channels so they link directly back through to your site is important but these are likely to be reciprocal links, assuming you have links to them from your website.
For inbound links, submit to relevant online directories that focus on the correct subject matter, some will require payment, or post to public forums.
Inclusion on all the big online travel agents (OTAs) will boost your SEO. Avon Data’s hotel channel manager enables you to manage all these different sales channels easily from one screen removing one of the difficulties of using lots of OTAs.
For more information on how Avon Data’s hotel management software can help boost your hotel’s sales and marketing, get in touch.