SEO is search engine optimization (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.) and combines a series of strategies to increase the number of visits to your hotel's website from organic search results. They say that what does not appear in the first positions or pages of Google does not exist, and they are right. Tell me: how many times have you reached page 4 or 5 of your favorite search engine when researching a result?
With the right SEO strategy and tactics you can make your hotel reach a higher visibility within the main results pages, or even the first places of the search engines. The higher the position, the higher the visibility and the more visits to your website; which can translate into more bookings.
Why is SEO important for the hotel industry?
The hotel industry tends to be quite saturated in some areas, and when someone searches, for example: hotels in Cancun, in Mazatlan or in some other city, they will get hundreds of results. Hence the importance of SEO: this is one of the main ways to beat the competition and attract as many bookings as possible from searches on Google or some other search engine.
In addition to increasing your hotel's visibility, staying in the top rankings will give you the following:
- Increased trust with your potential customers. The higher you are in the search engines, the more trust you will generate with your clients. We are used to the fact that the best is found in the first places.
- Visits or quality "traffic: a good SEO positioning strategy for hotels will allow your establishment to appear in the searches of the people who are more related to what you are offering.
Remember: it doesn't matter how nice your website is, or how many promotions you offer if nobody sees it, you have to get noticed! And SEO is here to help you do it. Before we continue, keep in mind that SEO optimization is not a magic tool with which you will see results overnight, patience and optimization will be your best friends from now on.
Once it is clear what SEO is and what it will help you with, we can start with some simple tips to apply it to hotels.
How to position a hotel with SEO?
If you are now more clear on what SEO is, you are ready to start implementing it! With these simple tips we will prepare you to start improving your website, attract more visitors and then convert them into customers.
Define your audience
The first step to start doing SEO on your hotel website is to define your target audience: who they are, what they like and their booking patterns. You won't choose the same keywords (what? Don't worry, we'll get to that in the next step) for someone looking for an adults-only hotel as you would for a family traveler.
Defining an audience will bring you many benefits, because you will be able to develop more precise content. You will concentrate on a focal group of individuals, which will bring a more targeted audience to your website.
To get a better sense of who you are writing to, you can ask yourself the following questions:
- What services do I offer at my hotel?
- Who is most attracted to these services?
- Is my hotel for adults only or more family oriented?
- What age range visits me most regularly?
Once you have this in mind, write it down, because the next step will require a lot of brainstorming... And the famous keywords.
What are keywords and how do I find the best ones?
Keywords are those phrases and words that people use in search engines and with which they will be able to find you organically in them. For example: Hotels in Cancun, the best hotels in Vallarta, where to stay in Vallarta.
There is a whole range of keywords that can be applied to your hotel and your location, so it is important that your keywords correctly match the user's intention and what you offer in your web site.
There are two types of keywords: short and long tail, or general and more specific. A general search could be "hotels in Vallarta", your search engine will give you a great amount of answers, since these words have a high volume of searches, it could seem like a good option, but it will really only give you generic results. On the other hand, if you want to position a long tail keyword such as: "all inclusive adult only hotels in Vallarta" the search engines will give your clients a more specific result of what they are looking for, making it easier for them to click on your website.
How to find the best keywords for my hotel?
To find the best keyword strategy it is important to know what are the main qualities and characteristics of your hotel, for example:
- Why do people travel to your hotel's city?
- What are they looking to do?
- What amenities are there?
- Are there any special upcoming events?
As you create a list of keywords and what you think people are searching for your hotel with, it is important to validate them with a keyword research tool.
There are many keyword research tools available such as Google Keyword Planner, Ubersuggest or even the search engine you like to use. All are easy to use, all you have to do is search by typing in a keyword (or a list of keywords).
Focus on the titles and subtitles of your page.
Once you already know the best keywords to rank your hotel with SEO, you can start updating the page titles and meta descriptions of your website.
Every page on your website has a unique title and meta description, which tells users looking at the results what they will find on your page.
The title is what appears at the top of each page, and the meta description is the phrase that usually appears below the title in Google.