Running a successful hotel business can be challenging. Not only must you maintain an attractive hotel brand, but you also must hire and train the right people to provide a level of service that exceeds your customers’ expectations and keeps them coming back. However, your ultimate goal in running a hotel is to increase revenue and maximize profits, which means that you need to boost your direct bookings.
One of the best ways to do that is through online marketing. This typically involves such things as email campaigns and social media advertising. However, many hotel owners completely ignore the power of search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM). This is unfortunate because SEO and SEM can play a huge role in producing more direct bookings. Having said that, here are five tips that will help you improve direct bookings:
1. Know your USP, and be able to communicate it clearly
To improve direct bookings, you must be able to stand out in the crowd. This requires a unique selling proposition (USP) that you can clearly communicate to prospective customers. Since there are many hotels from which to choose, you must be able to demonstrate clearly and visually why your hotel is the best choice. However, you must first get a prospective customer’s attention, and one of the best ways to do that is through the use of hotel SEO.
2. Have a clear and fast-loading website and booking engine
People are impatient, and they will move on to your competition’s website if yours is slow to load. Additionally, loading speed is one of the factors that Google considers when ranking sites. The same is true of your booking engine. If it takes too long to book a reservation, you may find that many of your prospective customers abandon the booking process before it is complete. In addition to loading fast, your website should also be clear and easy to navigate. A user should be able to find what they are looking for with no more than three mouse clicks.
3. Invest in search engine optimization (SEO)
In order to improve direct bookings, you need people to visit your website. This is more likely to happen if your website ranks high with Google and other search engines. A high ranking makes it more likely that your site will show up on one of the first search engine results pages (SERPs). Ideally, you want to be near the top of the first page and above your competition. To accomplish that, you will need to take advantage of hotel SEO.
4. Invest in search engine marketing (SEM)
You will also need to use hotel SEM, or search engine marketing. While SEO is used for page ranking, hotel SEM is used to improve your website’s visibility. The two work hand in hand to generate more organic and paid traffic. In most cases, SEM includes both search engine advertising and social media optimization. This includes such things as Facebook ads and paid Google ads. Such tools allow you to market to a particular audience that is more likely to book a room at your hotel.
5. Invest in retargeting
Hotel retargeting can be very effective because you are targeting people who have already expressed an interest in your hotel. In some cases, they may have gone so far as to begin the booking process but abandoned the process for some reason. This could be because they were distracted by a phone call, or perhaps your website could not hold their attention. However, you may be able to contact them directly and offer them an incentive to complete a booking. You can also use a remarketing ad that will show in their news feed whenever they begin to browse hotel sites.
You have the ability to increase your hotel’s revenue by boosting its direct bookings. However, you need a website that loads quickly and contains an intuitive booking process. You must also be able to clearly communicate your unique selling proposition. Additionally, you will need to invest in hotel SEO and SEM to drive both paid and organic traffic to your site. Lastly, you can generate more business through a remarketing campaign. Contact us today to get started!
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