A recent SKIFT article got a lot of buzz for its debate of whether Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is indeed a dying field for the monopoly that Google holds over controlling search results. The worry for small hospitality companies is that, without the budget to compete with huge booking companies like Priceline or Expedia, there is no way for them to get on the first page of results with their organic traffic methods. We are here to tell you that SEO is not dead, specifically in the travel industry!
Yes, TripAdvisor, Expedia, HomeAway, and the like are dominating the top listings by and large, but they can never get on the Google map that appears at the top of search results because they aren’t local businesses. The first page is still attainable with SEO strategies, but the map should be your ultimate goal, and is always achievable for local businesses. Here are a few reasons you shouldn’t trade in your organic traffic practices for paid online clicks, and further proof that SEO is not dead.
Your SEO strategy should be a long-term, content-driven machine capable of producing results for years to come. Blogging is the best means to stockpiling fresh content week-after-week, month-after-month, and year-after-year. Since we began doing SEO for Orchard Inn in July 2013, the results are staggering. Organic traffic is up over 100% year-over-year! The more content they accumulate through keyword-based blogging, the more organic traffic they drive while proving yet again that SEO is not dead.
Be Agile With SEO
The word on the street is that Google is no longer planning to release high-profile algorithm changes anymore. Instead, they are consistently releasing a series of changes, making it crucial you have someone working on your SEO at all times. SEO experts will help you stay relevant in Google’s ever-changing climate.
By the Side of the Road Proves SEO is not Dead
One of our bed and breakfast customers, By the Side of the Road, located in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, has been incredibly impressed with the results of their new SEO strategy since it began in April 2015. Notice how from January 1st through April 28th, 2015 organic traffic was up just 6% year-over-year. When we took over with our SEO strategy at the end of April organic traffic was up 68% the rest of the year! After our strategy had time to get noticed by Google algorithms, which usually takes about three to six months, so from September 1st through December 31st, organic was up by 132%!
Here’s what Janice Fitzgerald – the innkeeper at By the Side of the Road – has to say about the power of SEO:
“Q4launch educated us (even after 16 years of marketing our B&B on the web) about the importance of strategically planned and implemented SEO practices. Regular and consistent actions by professional marketing experts is key! Monthly monitoring and written reports are revealing substantial increases in organic traffic and every part of social media. Finally, we have a 21st-century partner guiding our business through the challenging web mysteries of SEO so we can focus on the business of keeping the inn! Thanks, Q4Launch!”
It’s easy to get distracted by the innumerable viral articles making bold claims like SEO is dead, but don’t be discouraged. This is exactly why partnering with experts in the field is the best decision you can make. Let us keep track of the constantly advancing digital world while you enjoy doing what you’re good at – running an awesome business known for bringing people back.