When you search Google for hotels in your location, is your hotel one of the first results to appear?
If it isn’t, chances are your hotel website needs SEO.
SEO, which stands for search engine optimisation, is the key to climbing up the search engine results pages (SERPs).
In other words, the more search engine optimised your website is, the more “Google-friendly” it will be. It will appear higher up when web users type in relevant search queries, resulting in greater visibility and more traffic to your website.
So, how do you search engine optimise a website? This beginner’s guide will go over the key factors for making your website SEO-friendly.
Did you know that the speed of your website is taken into account by search engines?
It’s true: slow loading times will demote your website in the SERPs. But thankfully there are several, ways you can speed up your website and improve its overall performance to increase your search engine visibility.
Primarily, take note of large images and third-party plugins that are taking too long to load, as these are often the first causes of a slow-loading website. Other causes may be poorly optimised code and substandard server hosting.
SEO keywords are the search queries that best represent your website or business, for example: “central hotels in Sydney”. Incorporating these keywords in your content is one of the best ways to optimise your website to be more Google-friendly.
However, it’s not effective to simply “spam” your content with as many keywords as you can think of. It’s better to nominate a few that are relevant, uncommon and unique to your website, before building your written content around them.
As for placement, SEO keywords are often included in title tags, headers, body text, alt text, meta descriptions, internal links and URLs.
Quality of Content
Going hand-in-hand with SEO keywords is the quality of your website’s written content. It’s not enough to simply rely on SEO keywords; your content must be well-written, unique, engaging and accurate/trustworthy to be deemed valuable by search engines.
It’s best to have a professional copywriter create the written content of your website, but you can analyse your existing website content by asking yourself a few key questions, including:
- Is my content interesting and engaging?
- Is my content easily readable and to the point?
- Does my content inspire me to take action, i.e. make a booking?
Landing pages are “standalone” website pages that are designed to generate leads and convince website visitors to take action. For a hotel website, a landing page might be a web page designated to local attractions and things to do, or a brand new special offer/marketing campaign.
Creating landing pages are especially effective for increasing your website’s visibility, as these can further utilise your SEO keywords as well as widen your online reach in regards to what your audience might be searching for.
In general, a landing page will attract new customers, then lead them to one of your hotel’s main website pages to find more information, subscribe to your email list or make a booking.
Do you maintain a regularly updated website blog? A blog can be viewed in the same way as a landing page, but with more freedom in terms of the content, you choose to write about.
A hotel website blog can be utilised in a variety of creative ways: promoting local attractions and things to do, local restaurants, upcoming events as well as small announcements or news updates for your reader base.
And similarly to all your website content, each blog can be search engine optimised for Google by incorporating SEO keywords, internal/external links and audience-engaging topics.
And that’s it - now that you have learnt the basics of search engine optimisation, how SEO-friendly have you made your website? Let us know in the comments below!