Search engines plays a pivotal role in the success hotels have in marketing and growing their business. Google is especially influential, making hotels more visible than ever to potential guests.
Google My Business is a free business listing you can create and is the best first step to ranking higher in search results and providing travelers with all the necessary information they need about your hotel.
Here's why Google My Business is essential for your hotel (… and how you can improve your SEO)
Search engine optimization is a complicated issue because Google is constantly updating its algorithms. Trying to update your website at the same pace is nearly impossible unless you're using a smart website creator that evolves with new standards.
On the other hand, there are a few simple tasks you can complete to increase your chances of ranking high in search results.
Google My Business gets your hotel off on the right foot by taking your information and organizing it into optimized fields on a template that ensures you, and your guests, do not miss anything.
Using the tool you can:
- List your hotel's name, address, and phone number
- Have a geo-marker on Google maps to highlight your location
- Display unique photos
- Display guest reviews
- Provide any additional details relevant to travelers looking for information
- Google My Business makes your hotel immediately more accessible. Potential guests can easily click 'visit website' or 'call' from the search result on Google.
This also encourages them to book directly with you instead of through commission-based online travel agents. It's also very easy to edit all of your information once you have verified your business through your Google account, meaning even if you're away you can still be managing your listing and influencing your search ranking.
To ensure your business listing is effective you need to make sure your details are always up-to-date and accurate.
You should consider adding videos in addition to your images and have at least five genuine guest reviews for your hotel.
More tips for mastering your hotel's SEO
First impressions are always the most important. If you create an effective SEO strategy along with your Google listing and a beautiful website, you're more likely to capture bookings in the first instance.
Here are some important guidelines to follow:
- Research keywords and define your own list. Then use the most relevant and searchable on your website and in your content.
- Quality content always ranks highly so make sure what you provide your site visitors is interesting and engaging. Keep it fresh too, that means updating regularly, so maintaining a blog on your website will make this easy.
- Create cornerstone SEO pages by merging multiple pages that relate to similar keywords – otherwise Google will not know how to rank them and you will not feature high on search results.
- Optimizing your website for mobiles will increase the opportunity you have to be seen by travelers and enable you to accept mobile bookings for guests who plan their travel on the run.
- Partner with other local sites to increase your inbound links. The more the better, both for traffic and search engine ranking. Visual content should always be a priority. No one will book your hotel site unseen.