We had a great time presenting our December webinar on digital marketing strategies that hotels should implement and budget for in 2015 for continued online success. We covered topics from hotel website design and search engine optimization, to ongoing Internet marketing initiatives such as local, paid, and social media marketing. Here are the key highlights:
- Make sure your website is optimized for conversion, easy to navigate, and has clear call-to-actions
- With 3 out of 5 searches being done on mobile and tablet, make sure that you have a mobile strategy in place
- In terms of platform, make sure that the download time is reasonable, site is search engine friendly (crawlable), implement metadata and social tags, and also focus on semantic search.
- In terms of local and off-page optimization, make sure to claim and optimize your hotel’s Google+ Business page and post frequently. Don’t forget to monitor your listings to make sure your UNAP is accurate and consistent.
- Social media and SEO strategies should be integrated
- And don’t forget to take advantage of paid search, especially bidding on your brand name – because if you aren’t, you’re turning business to OTAs who are bidding on your name.
We also received several questions on the chatline. Below is the webinar Q&A:
Q1: How can I get Google’s “mobile-friendly” label for my website?
In order to be eligible to have the “mobile-friendly” label on your hotel’s search results listing, there are a few things that your hotel website must have in order to pass. At bare minimum, make sure:
- You must have a mobile strategy – whether it’s a responsive site or mobile site.
- The site must not include features that are uncommon on mobile devices – such as Flash.
- Content and text font must be legible without the user needing to zoom in or scroll horizontally
- Navigation must be simple enough for users to easily click on the correct link
Q2: What are the ranking factors for the 3-pack?
There are many factors for ranking for the 3-pack. At the bare minimum, your business needs:
- Have an optimized Google+ Business Page profile. Google can crawl this page and provide information found on this listing in its organic search results.
- Optimize for local search. Make sure accurate hotel information is on your website. Submit your site to quality and credible online directories. Also make sure that your hotel info, especially UNAP, is accurate and consistent throughout the local ecosystem.
- Google Hotel Finder should be included in your PPC plan. With the update of the new 3-pack results, the user will have to click through the business listing to get more information about the hotel and then use the Hotel Finder widget to book a room.
Q3: How often would you recommend we post on Google+?
The more the better! But we recommend sharing at least once a day. It doesn’t mean that you have to create new content every time. These posts can simply sharing a useful packing checklist you found on the web, or a blog post of things to do this weekend from a destination blog about your city, such as http://SF.destinationvisit.com about things to do in your area. Rule of thumb, only 1 out of 5 posts should be salesy or promoting the hotel. Most content shared should be useful and practical information for the audience.
Q4: If you use designated phone numbers for specific e-campaigns – will this impact ranking in regards to having consistent phone information?
Yes and no. Having a unique phone number to track phone bookings is an absolutely great strategy. This can help bring to light campaign ROI closer to actual revenue per campaign. On the flipside, we do recommend providing consistent hotel info, including phone numbers, on your hotel’s website, online directories, citations, and profiles. Having multiple phone numbers floating around can impact the hotel’s ranking on search; so what we have done for our clients that have subscribed to phone tracking is embed the unique phone numbers in images, rather than providing it within the text content of the landing page.
Contributed by: Lauren Adams, Product Marketing Specialist