When was the last time you set foot inside a travel agent’s office? Yep, we can’t remember our last visit either.
That’s because these days most people choose to buy their holiday online; whether they’re opting for a package deal or going for the increasingly popular option of assembling flights, transfers and hotels individually, booking online is the most convenient choice for most people. As a result, SEO for the travel industry is big business. Here are a few tips that we’ve picked up, which might help to set you on the right track for a successful campaign.
Build Relationships with Your Customers
This is our key recommendation. There are so many travel sites out there that there is no reason for people to find their way back to yours more than once, unless you give them one. Of course, providing a great service is the best way to establish this. Travel is often an expensive lifestyle purchase and people remember, as well as often reviewing, the bad experiences but they also appreciate the exceptional.
Your customer relationship begins with the useability of your website. If it is not as easy, if not easier and more pleasant to use than your competitor’s site then you will lose them immediately. Lots of people compare and contrast, often shopping for travel with more than one browser tab open, so if your site is more awkward than the next you’re fighting a losing battle.
Obviously it is then important to continue the quality of service in the real world as well but assuming this is done and your customers have a great holiday, stay in touch with them afterward in the most personalised way possible. Provide suggestions and offers via e-mail but always tailored to their previous purchases.
To build relationships and authority without pestering your clients start a blog. A blog will provide a way for clients to opt in to keeping in touch with you. If you are a niche travel company – for example, building tailored, action-packed trips for adventurous people who like to sky-dive, trek, ski etc, then an ideas generating blog is perfect for you and something customers are likely to subscribe to.
If you provide a wider range of holidays then perhaps start several targeted blogs to give all of your clients the opportunity of selecting something for them.
This is a great way to improve your ranking as well.
As for Reviews
Lots of people shop for holidays by reading the reviews of other travelers. If you’re confident about your levels of service then invite people to review their trip on your site. This will improve buyer confidence no end.
When it comes to the travel industry, don’t just divide your budget equally for the year. Think about what people buy and when, work out trends and then spend accordingly. Early in the year is good for forward planning and promoting summer trips, while late summer is the perfect time to sell late deals.