When it comes to hotel marketing strategies, there is no doubt that looking into Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is an absolute must. However, it can often be hard to know where to start and how to really make your SEO strategy as successful as you wish it to be and see the bookings come flooding in.
Looking at paid search or Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns is a very effective way of driving traffic to your hotel’s website and something that should be seriously considered. PPC basically means that every time a customer clicks through your website’s advert, you will be charged a small fee and is a more focused way of ‘buying’ traffic for your site. Being able to target your marketing efforts towards particular audiences, which PPC offers, is very powerful and can be extremely profitable. Obviously the costing is outweighed by the revenue that the traffic brought to your site creates, so for example if you pay £2 for a click, and the customer then spends £60 on a room, it has been a profitable PPC campaign.
Deciding on a budget can be tricky. The more keywords you want to include, the more money you will need for an effective campaign in order to compete within the sector. It is therefore imperative that you do your research and really think about what it is you hope to achieve. Do you want to promote a seasonal offer you have or are you just wanting to drive more traffic to your site? Knowing this will lead you in the right direction to figuring out how much of a budget you want to spend Obviously, it will all depend on what you can afford to spend. However, we would advise that you initially go for the most that you can spare to see how well the campaign can work for you, especially if you haven’t used PPC before, as you may need a bit of time to realise what works best for your hotel.
When beginning a PPC campaign, it is important that you really utilise the opportunity to speak directly to a segmented audience. Your message can be focused towards a particular demographic and you have the chance to think of the time of day and location that you would like to target. Bear this in mind and do research on your customers to see which audience you are most likely to get the best results from. Think about the language you want to be used in the ad. If, for example, you want to promote a last minute deal that your hotel is offering, make sure your ad has a sense of urgency. Make it sound as though there are only a few rooms left and they must be booked up that evening. It is a simple yet effective way of filling up rooms on the same day and it is worth targeting mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets to try and improve results.
Using local events as a way to gain traffic is also a great way to be seen as a thought leader within the travel industry and reflects that you have a genuine interest in your guests and why they may be visiting the area. Make sure all of your language is relevant to what your customers may be searching for. It needs to entice them and really speak to them. Try and make it as attractive as possible so that it grabs their attention. It is also worth thinking about what events may be happening around you and using them as a way to attract more guests, especially if you have some offers available. People are likely to be searching about the event, so by including it within your ad, you are putting yourself in a better position to gain more exposure in relation to it. Plus, it is easier to jump on the back of events through PPC than trying to gain organic searches. Don’t forget to look at previous guests too! You can always remarket to them and the great thing here is you should already have the right data to know how to target them. Look through your previous website and bookings data to see where the majority of guests came from, which devices they booked through and where they travelled from. You can then target your ads to this particular group to try and bring them back to visit your site again.
There is also the option to look into using a Hotels PPC Company to do the hard work for you! While it is by no means the easiest thing to get used to, once you have included PPC in your marketing strategies you will soon begin to see the rewards and it will become an everyday part of your marketing efforts.