If you’re a hotelier, how could you not be interested in hearing how to drive more traffic to your hotel website?
NB: This is an article from Hotelchamp
I get the frustration though, every time you look around trying to get some new ideas, you end up reading the exact same tips you might have heard a hundred other times already, something like: optimise your hotel website for mobile devices, be present on social media, offer the best deal as opposed to the OTAs… just to mention a few. This time instead, let’s look at some proven tactics and strategies that can really boost your hotel website traffic, with little to no budget, and in little to no time.
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The Basics: When users search your hotel name
This is probably the most obvious, yet the most important way to show up in multiple shapes and forms when users enter your hotel brand name in the Google search bar.
Google Map Pack, also referred to as Google Pack, is the general term used to describe the location-based results people see on a Google search results page, where it lists local businesses, like hotels and restaurants, and identifies their location on a map with little place marker icons. Each time someone searches your hotel name on Google, you have 4 ways to get traffic to your hotel:
- Website Link
- Telephone number
- Google HPA (Hotel Price Ads)
- Google Free Booking Links
Free booking links are visible when clicking “View More Rates”. They show up like this:
Whilst Google HPA comes at a cost, the other 3 are free. Both your website and telephone number come from your Google My Business profile. Here’s a couple of tips.
- First, add a utm_source parameter to the website link in your GMB profile. So, instead of www.yourhoteldomain.com enter instead www.yourhoteldomain.com?utm_source=GMB. This will allow you to see exactly how much that website link in Google My Business contributes to your hotel website traffic.
- Second, make sure the telephone number that shows up in your profile is a number that can handle reservations; a switchboard number won’t be effective, so tear down all the walls between your prospective customers and their future stay at your hotel.
Offer a retargeting-only discount
You certainly have heard that it is 3 times more difficult to convert a new customer than a returning one.
The same principle applies to first-time visitors of your website as opposed to returning visitors. In other words, instead of pushing and claiming for a booking at first sight, be patient and aim at getting first-time visitors to return at a later stage when they’ll feel ready to book. And do so by giving them a valid reason to come back, like a discount, an additional benefit or anyway something “more” that they didn’t see when they first visited your hotel website.
If you offer a discount, it doesn’t have to be a huge discount like the one in the example above, even just 5% will make your message effective and appealing.
Join Group conversations on Facebook
Have a look:
Groups like these are all over the place and all over the globe. Any major travel destination has at least one casual group that gathers travel lovers in relation to that specific destination.
Look again at the above post: I guess you’d agree that this lady represents a potential lead for any hotel in London, right? Guess what, I personally checked the 74 comments this post came along with and.. not a single hotel replied to the question.
Now, it is also of paramount importance to understand that a comment that sounds like “Book Now, Come to Us, Stay with Us, Super Deal” and all possible variants that say nothing but “Buy Now Buy Now Buy Now” are quite senseless. A person asking such a question is still in their discovery phase. In other words, they’re looking for ideas and suggestions. So, simple as that: give them ideas and suggestions. Ultimately, Social Media in this setting is not the place for selling, Social Media is a place for engaging.