The days of hotels only providing lodging, cruises just sending travelers sailing and airlines specifically serving to fly people from point A to point B is over. The move for a travel brand to become a jack of all tourism trades began quite a while ago with online travel agencies. Today, the big OTAs like Expedia, Priceline and TripAdvisor have all but perfected getting consumers to book every aspect of their trip through them. With this success comes competition though, and now traditional travel companies are vying for all of travelers dollars – and their loyalty across services. This is where Travel SEO Content comes into play.
How are hoteliers, cruise companies, airlines and even tour companies disrupting the OTAs – the ultimate travel disruptors – and claiming a combination of accommodation, car rental, cruise and tour bookings despite being previous known for specific offerings? They’re using travel SEO content strategies to be the face of travel throughout the customer’s on-ground experience.
Marketing to the New “Experience” Traveler using Travel SEO Content
It’s becoming increasingly important for travel brands to stay relevant in a sea of established and emerging players competing for the new traveler. These new travelers do much of their research on their own and they know (and are able to find) exactly what they want in a trip. They’re looking for experiences that are far from generic – activities and encounters that are catered to them personally and even life changing.
Travelers have shown the industry over the past few years that they’re tired of predictable “box” vacations and business trips. They want to be engaged and they crave authenticity. This is why the OTAs excel at gaining the traveler’s dollar. Online travel agencies are pros at providing and selling a diverse range of offerings that speak to every part of the travel buyer’s on-ground experience. Yet, there is room for improvement and many opportunities for traditional travel brands jump ahead of the pack.
While diversity and customization is imperative to target today’s experience-driven traveler, so is consistency and perfection in execution. Traditional travel brands that have seen success with dependable and flawlessly delivered single products and services – whether high-end or budget – can now take what they’ve excelled at into a new arena.
The current playing field of experience travel is vast, and it features many pathways to travelers and their business. Done right, which ultimately means better than the OTAs, providing travel across channels is a road to the top. There is some distance to cover, for sure, but brands looking to capture customers and conversions by new means can win quickly through targeted travel SEO content.
Creating Travel SEO Content Around Micro-Moments
Google has defined 4 micro-moments that are key opportunities for travel brands to stand out along the travel buyer’s journey. These moments – or phases from planning a trip to traveling – include the times when travelers dream, research, book and experience. Creating content that speaks to customers in each of these micro-moments is essential.
When travel brands develop editorial calendars, it’s critical they focus on gaining visibility for the specific needs of the target customer in each of these phases. This can be done by using keywords that relate to every stage in the travel buyer’s journey. Local SEO is a key factor in creating content that highlights a brand’s unique position to provide targeted experiences within a narrow geographic region.
Optimize for Local Search
Optimizing for local search goes a long way when travel brands want to rank as a local expert. And, really that’s the goal when trying to earn the business of the experience traveler. When business and leisure travelers seek any encounter on a trip, they’re looking for local guidance – the insider’s expertise, if you will.
Claiming your Google My Business page and getting listed in geo-specific business directories is a good first start to becoming the go-local local expert. Additionally, local SEO strategies need to include link building, working to increase page rank and adding in-depth localized pages to your website.
Making Travel SEO Content Mobile Friendly
Gaining visibility and earning customers in today’s travel landscape depends on optimizing for mobile. Roughly 94% of leisure travelers and 97% of business travelers with a smartphone bring a mobile device on each trip. These travelers also research and book their trips on mobile, and they want to interact with their travel provider through mobile whether they need help with a problem in a destination or want add-on travel ideas.
Creating mobile friendly content – for instance online concierge services and guides accessible via an app or mobile-friendly website – shows travelers you can be their trusted companion as they plan their experiences and take part in them.
Personalization of content and perfecting user experience across all products are also vital SEO strategies for travel brands wanting to establish themselves as the go-to for ground experiences. To learn exactly what’s needed, contact Galileo Tech Media.