The digital landscape is one that changes frequently and seemingly overnight. Luckily, you’ve got people like us that like keeping track of these changes and digital marketing trends and tell you what you’ve got to do now to keep your website performing well against the competition.
- Content marketing: Content marketing has been a major strategy for marketers these past few years and it can even be broken down into further categories:
- SEO: Not only is Google constantly updating its algorithm and refining how searchers get the information they’re looking for, you constantly have to work on your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) efforts to keep your content within Google’s guidelines. This includes correctly using your keywords, ensuring your content provides value to the searcher, and guides the visitor through the website, among other factors.
- Influencer: Influencer marketing is working with highly influential writers or personalities on the web to share information about your hotel with their substantial following. Influencer marketing can be a great way to share your property’s story through others but this tactic does require time and effort.
- Blogging: Blogging is a great way to add fresh content to your website and show off your E.A.T., something Google is looking for on your site. Your E.A.T. stands for your expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. Write about wedding tips, nearby hiking trails, summer events, or anything that would be relevant to your guest.
- User experience: The experience your online visitor has on your website can either make or break the chance they’re going to convert. Having a confusing navigation, missing pages, or no calls-to-action can greatly deter an online visitor from booking on your site.
- Responsive design: Having a responsive design is another important element for your website, not only because it’s the favored design style by Google but your site will actually be punished in the search engines if you don’t at the very least have a mobile version of your site. Using a responsive design displays all pages of your website to an online visitor, no matter what device they want to use, whether it’s desktop, tablet, or mobile.
- Dynamic content: Searchers today are expecting the information to meet their needs and almost expect what their next step in the sales funnel is going to be. With dynamic content you can change what content is served to your online visitor based on a variety of factors that go into your subscriber database. This database begins to recognize your online visitors and their past behavior on your site and serves them content that’s designed to move them through the buying cycle.
- Search results: Not only is it important to optimize your website, it’s important to optimize your search results listings with showcasing amenities and adding schema mark-up. Reviews are also listed here so don’t be afraid to ask your guests to review you on a variety of sites or directories.
The reviews and ratings, photos, and calories listed are examples of schema in a Google Search. These specific elements are marked up with code for Google to include in the results page. There are lodging industry specific codes that can be added to your website.
- Remarketing: Advertising is an important component of any marketing plan and different advertising methods should be tested. Traditional ads are great but with the power of remarketing and highly customized audience targeting, you could be missing out on conversions. Did you know that only 2% of online visitors convert on their first visit to your site? As more websites, and even social media channels, adopt remarketing ads, we can’t imagine this form of advertising is going anywhere and this year could be a great time to test if these ads work for your property.
Photo credit: 360psg
- Social media marketing: Social media marketing is a great tactic to build better relationships with your guests and increase awareness of your property. In fact, 83% of travelers visit social networking sites for travel inspriation and 61% go straight to a search engine and about 76% of travelers post photos to social media while on vacation. But, social media also helps with your brand’s overall online presence as search engines use social signals, how often you post and engagement with your posts, to determine your ranking in the results.
- Reputation management: Reputation management will always be an important aspect of your business. Be sure to respond to reviews in a timely and professional manner as about 46% of travelers read online reviews before booking a hotel and that 79% of these travelers trust these reviews as much as they trust recommendations from friends and family.
Photo credit: TripAdvisor
- Apps: App development is something we’re keeping an eye on at RezStream as Google has begun indexing apps in search results and that apps can have a friendlier interface for guests than navigating a website on a mobile device. Many of these apps focus on the guest experience allowing them to check-in with their mobile device, text the front desk with any requests, or utilize concierge services via the app.
What digital marketing trend will have the most impact on your business? Tell us in the comments section below!