How successful is your hotel marketing plan when it comes to the internet?
Many hotel owners spend a great deal of time and money on the look of their website which is, of course, important, but then fail to invest in the most important aspect of all – how they are going to get visitors to their site and then convert them into bookings.
There is a great difference between simply putting up an attractive website and the internet marketing of your hotel.
A website, in itself, is merely an online brochure. If you want your website to form an integral part of your overall hotel marketing plan, it needs to be far more than that.
If you were investing in a car, you would never consider simply buying an appealing-looking chassis. Yes, it is nice to have a car that is pleasant to look at, but unless it has an engine that will get you to where you want to go, it is useless.
It is the same with your website.
It is important that it looks good, but it is even more vital that you are able to attract enough traffic to your site and then convert that traffic into bookings.
Traffic can be attracted in a variety of ways, whether it be through the organic listings on Google and the other search engines or through Pay-Per-Click advertising.
The advantage of Pay-Per-Click, known as Google AdWords on Google, is that you can ensure that your website appears on the first page of the search engines for terms that your potential customers are typing in when looking for a hotel in your area.
Your hotel marketing plan should include marketing strategies that can be tested and measured. You need to know how successful each component is, including your internet marketing strategies. If you are not sure how your website is doing, try typing in the sort of search terms your prospects are likely to be using. Is your hotel’s website appearing on page one, whether it be in the paid-for ads or in the organic listings? Or are you struggling to find it?
If your website is not appearing high up on page one, then this is a cause for concern for you. Even if you are featured on a number of bookings websites, you will be competing with other hotels in your area on those sites.
It is important that your potential guests can easily find your website itself.
You can correct the problem immediately, if you are not currently engaging in a Google AdWords/Pay-Per-Click campaign, by setting one up or you can work on optimising your website and making it more relevant to the search terms that your prospects are using.
The search engines reward relevance every time. The more relevant your website is to what your potential guests are searching for, the higher up in the rankings your website is likely to appear. This can take time but it is well worth doing. Use of the internet is increasing at more than 15 per cent a year and more and more of your prospects are searching for you online.
Make sure your hotel marketing plan includes an effective internet strategy and, if you are not happy with how your website is currently performing, make sure you get the help you need to improve.