Despite the “content is king” mantra we’re all sick of by now, SEO remains one of the most crucial factors when it comes to making sure your website ranks highly in the Google SERPs and gets clicked on by your guests.
But with the digital landscape changing daily, it can be a struggle for even seasoned search marketers to keep pace. This means you could be leaving significant SEO value untapped on your hotel’s website, and your rankings may be suffering as a result.
Before we take a look at 3 sometimes overlooked search optimisation strategies you can use to boost your visibility, conduct a quick analysis of your website to check for obvious ranking killers such as broken links or spam alerts. If there are no obvious culprits, it’s time to think about what else your strategy might be missing.
1. Structure Matters
According to research by Moz, 24% of organic ranking factors are determined by on-page signals, specifically the site’s domain page authority. In other words, the service you’re using to host your hotel’s website can actually negatively impact its ranking depending on its standing with Google.
Unsurprisingly, Google favours websites that offer a positive user experience, with fast page loading speeds and a smooth check-out process. The domain’s credibility is also important – if you’ve opted for a less reliable hosting platform with lots of 404 error pages, that could hurt your own website’s ranking in the SERPs.
When it comes to choosing a host, be on the lookout for important SEO features like customisable meta descriptions, URLs and page titles. Blogging platforms and social buttons, either as built-in features or add-ons, are also a great way to build links and include more keywords within your website.
2. Target Lower Ranking Keywords
Even those brand new to SEO are probably familiar with the concept of keyword research – that first crucial step used by marketers to uncover the most searched for terms related to a topic. Identifying these high volume keywords is important, but it’s a little more complicated than that.
When a keyword is getting searched for by lots of consumers that also means it is being very commonly used on lots of websites, which means the likelihood of your result achieving high ranking is pretty small.
Competition for the keyword “Gold Coast hotels”, for example, is going to be pretty steep. Sure, this generic phrase is popular among your guests, but it’s popular with your competitors too. For that reason, including more niche, less common but still extremely relevant keywords will help you stand out from the crowd.
For example, adding additional keywords like “child-friendly”, “family,” or “budget” can help your hotel’s web pages rank for more searches and better still, for travellers who have a clearer idea of what they’re looking for and may be more ready to make a booking.
3. Amp Up Your Drive For Reviews
Encouraging reviews from past guests doesn’t just help persuade other travellers to book, they can serve a boost to your search strategy too.
There is evidence to suggest that review signals contribute significantly to ranking factors, and that Google takes into consideration not only the volume of reviews, but how often new ones are written and even how authentic they appear to be. After all, if most of your hotel’s reviews are worded very similarly or are years old, there’s a good chance they’re either not genuine or no longer relevant.
Including a good range of guest reviews on your hotel’s website can also help your page get featured as a Google rich snippet, which will make your search result more attractive, even if you don’t achieve the top result.
What do you think? Had you considered any of these tactics as part of your hotel’s overall SEO strategy? Let us know in the comments below!