If you work in the hospitality industry (or just about any other industry), you might have asked yourself if SEO is as important as it once was. The truth is, yes, SEO is every bit as important as it’s always been. In fact, there have been a lot of changes to SEO recently that can be a real benefit to people in all industries. So, with that in mind, here are some tips and techniques you can use to be sure your hospitality SEO is working to drive more guests to your location.
Is your website mobile friendly?
It’s no surprise that consumers are using their mobile phones and tablets to scour the internet now more than ever. It’s important to consider that your customer may be making purchases, researching businesses, and completing other actions through their mobile device. To be highly-ranked by Google and other search engines, you’ll need to optimize your website for mobile and tablet viewing.
Action step: Be sure to use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool to be sure your website performs as well on smartphones as it does on desktops.
Your Google My Business account
A Google My Business (GMB) page is essential for any and all businesses. This page allows you to control the information Google reports about your business in its search results. Your Google My Business page can include a business description, points of interest near your business, landmarks, airports, and more.
Action step: Update your Google My Business page and be sure it is optimized with your correct address, hours, website, and phone number.
Is your NAP consistent?
Your NAP (Name, Address, and Phone Number) are huge indicators for Google and other search engines when it comes to local SEO. Any inconsistencies in your NAP with local and digital directories will cause search engines to distrust your business. For example, the NAP listed on your website should be exactly the same as the information listed on, say, the YellowPages. If your NAP shows consistency between your GMB page, website, and YellowPages (along with other directories), Google will take notice, validate the information you have provided. And, in turn, increase your ranking in local search.
Action step: Use a free tool like this one from Moz Local to test your listing score across multiple channels.
Use SEO best practices
Your business can gain major visibility by showing up in the local 3-Pack listing on Google’s first page. To be considered for ranking in the local 3-Pack, you need to be sure that you are using SEO keywords that are related to your industry as well as your position in proximity to your city center. Do extensive keyword research to find the most appropriate and effective keywords (both long-tail and short-tail) for your industry. Make sure your keywords are optimized and pertain to significant destinations and secondary cities near you.
Action Step: Use SEO best practices when looking to rank higher on SERP’s.
Are your reviews up to par?
Research shows that 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. That statistic alone should be enough to understand how important reviews are to the success of your business. To attract raving fans who write great reviews, you must not only provide great service, but also prompt consumers to write a review. Search engines rank local businesses higher depending on the number of reviews they accumulate, as well as the rating of those reviews. Focus not only on Google reviews, but reviews from other trustworthy sites as well. If multiple sites have reviews of your business, customers will become more comfortable engaging with your business.
Action step: Use a review management platform like BirdEye to manage, respond, and measure your business reviews.
Do you have a social media presence?
Increasingly, consumers are not only searching for your business on the various search engines. They are also searching through multiple social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. If you’re not using social media as a tool for brand awareness, you should be. And if you are, you need to be sure that your most important information is easily visible. It’s important that your customers can find your social media channels easily. You can achieve this by including links to your social media on your website, which allows for further engagement with your consumers.
Action Step: Use these tips to explore the most effective ways for businesses to market using social media.
Your business’s online presence is important and you should be paying attention to it. Using local SEO is just one of the ways that your business can reach potential customers. By using the above techniques, you’ll be on the best track possible to properly leverage local SEO to increase awareness of your business.