In 1873, Jules Verne had written the popular novel, ‘Around the World in Eighty days’. It has been made into a successful film as well. The protagonist in the book as well as the film has to undergo a lot of hardships to complete his tour of the world in 80 days to win the wager. No wonder, if he had the SEO concept at that time, it would not have taken that much time or effort on his part. That is the power of local SEO. We shall see how to develop a strong SEO strategy so that it would not be difficult for the present-day customer to find the right kind of travel arrangements.
If ever there were a customer-centric industry, it is the travel agencies industry. This makes it imperative for the travel agencies to be present in all directories. It would do well for the travel agencies to have a presence in the neighboring locality directories as well. A cross-presence in allied industries like cabs, taxis, and tour operators can also do a lot of good. The primary objective is to make your customers find you easily.
Accuracy and Consistency of information is the key
If you want your customer to find you, it is important for you to be consistent with your information. It is also important to be accurate as well. Maintaining accuracy of information over all directories is essential. Otherwise, you end up confusing the search engine bots. It might be a simple spelling mistake for you to spell Avenue as Ave, but the search engine bots take it otherwise. They constitute it as a separate entity. Hence, you might find your web traffic directed to your rival’s website.
Planning is a very important aspect of any tour. It can be a family vacation or a business tour. No matter what, you need to plan your travel. Otherwise, you might get stuck up in a foreign land. However, with local SEO to help you out, this possibility has also reduced. You are able to contact your travel agency from anywhere. You set out with a clear plan and budget in mind. In case you do not plan your trip well, you might end up paying a lot of money on travel. Hence, a strong local SEO campaign can help the travelers/tourists to locate you easily.
SEO for Travel Agencies – How ?
This travel agencies industry is a highly customer-centric one. Hence, you require a strong website that provides a powerful user experience. This caters to the on-page SEO aspect. At the same time, you should have an effective promotional campaign that takes care of the off-page SEO concept. An effect campaign should have an optimum blend of user experience and promotional campaign. Let us see how we go about creating an effective local SEO campaign.
Have a strong website
It is important to have a compelling website having the capacity to hold the attention of the visitor. What goes into the designing of such a website? What is the need to have a strong website? We will cover these aspects in this article.
Let us look at the second part of the question first. Statistics say that around 65 to 70% of the traveling public refers to the internet for chalking out their plans. The number is bound to increase with more and more people becoming comfortable with using the internet. Hence, it is imperative for travel agencies to rule the local SEO. Securing a high rank on the search engine pages is inevitable today. This is the principal factor behind the need to have a strong presence on the SERPs.
As far as the first part of the question is concerned, you need to have a variety of factors working for you. Let us look at them in brief.
An effective title and Meta description can help matters
What is the first thing your customer does when he searches for a travel agency website? He types out his search keywords in the search bar of the local SERPs such as Google, Bing, etc. Your customer is based in Chicago IL. Hence, it is natural for him to search for a travel agency website in his neighborhood. You do not expect him to base his search in New York.
This is nothing but the title and Meta description tags. It gives him an insight into what he is looking for. Therefore, there is a need for making this aspect of your activity a compelling one. This is what drives your customer into visiting your website. Intelligent use of the primary and secondary keywords is necessary. Your primary keyword should be your category whereas the secondary keywords pertain to the various services you offer.
There are not many words for you to play with here. Google has stipulated your Meta Descriptions not to exceed 160 to 200 characters in length. You should be able to entice your customers into visiting your website within this word count. The most important aspect of the title and description tags is your key phrase. That determines your ranking on the SERP. Use tools like Keyword Planner etc to arrive at the right kind of keyword phrase to use.
An excellent and attractive Homepage is essential
Your Homepage or the landing page as they call it in the SEO industry should give your customer everything he needs. This includes a brief insight into the details of the Company, your contact addresses, the various services you provide, vital information such as procuring visas, information about hotels, and sightseeing highlights. An effective FAQ page is also important as people have doubts. You can have an assortment of the clarifications your customers seek and would like to know.
The most important aspect of you website is the design. It should be compelling enough for your customer to look at the services you offer. The speed of loading of the web pages becomes important. Naturally, a fast-loading website looks attractive. The customer gets what he wants in the shortest possible time. Your objective is to ensure that your customers get a compelling user experience. A great looking homepage goes a long way in ensuring this.
Quality content is vital
You have the customer knocking on your homepage. It is now vital to provide him with detailed information of the services you provide. The best way to do so is to have quality content on the website. You should be able to impress your customer and arouse an eager want in him to browse your website further.
This needs an excellent keyword research strategy. You have a lot of tools on the internet to help you out. Remember, your keyword should be popular as well as unique in order to succeed.
It is important for you to describe your services in the simplest manner. Effective communication is the key. Have a separate web page for each service you provide. This helps you a lot because many search engines rank your individual pages as well on the website. Hence, avoid mixing up keywords that can confuse the search engine bots as well as your customers.
It is also important to provide information about some of the services you do not provide like that of procuring visas for travel. Of course, you can facilitate the procurement, but never guarantee it. You can include vital information that is of use to the customer for procuring his travel visas.
Have a great linking strategy
The next aspect of your strategy should be your linking strategy. It is a great idea to have internal as well as external links in your website content. Internal links help the customer to navigate from one page to the other easily. Customers can have various doubts when they search for information on the internet. Use your internal links judiciously in your FAQ pages to link to your various services pages. Make it an enjoyable and informative experience for your customer.
At the same time, external links matter as well. Normally, the customer would like to verify your information. You can provide him with external links to the source of your information. This helps in building up the trust factor. You can have direct external links to the official website pages of the visa issuing authorities and websites offering accommodation and travel information.
Ensure that your links open on different windows as this makes it easy for your customers to navigate back to the main page. Small things matter a lot while designing a website.
The days of going around the world on 80 days are gone. You can now have around the world trip and enjoy the beauty of every part of the world within 80 days. This entails the travel agencies to have a strong SEO campaign. This is the essence of local SEO for travel agencies.
List of Directories
Local search citation sites related to travel agencies including locations.