In ContentSEOGoogle

This month we feature a blog on a subject which is close to our hearts, particularly for members of the Simpleview SEO team.  We hope that you’ll be able to share it with your providers and achieve a boost in your SEO rankings as a result.  

One of the many strengths of our tourism websites is their ability to achieve high rankings for high volume terms and keywords. For example, ‘what's on in Liverpool’, ‘things to to in Bristol’ and ‘accommodation in Chester’ are the most popular types of keywords for the tourism sector and will therefore generate a high-ranking position for your site.  Although individual businesses will struggle to rank their own sites for these high volume, high competition keywords, there are ways that they can really help to make an impact on the overall performance of the destination.  

It is essential that your site’s product pages are populated with sufficient, high-quality content. The site’s authority (or ability to rank on search engine listings) can be damaged by poor quality product pages.  If providers fail to fill out their product page sufficiently, they not only damage the site, but they can also impact on the performance of other businesses in the destination and ultimately the performance of the destination overall.  It is in the best interests of tourism businesses to aim to boost the exposure for the destination by maximising the promotion of its tourism assets. 

It is also important to remember that the provider’s business name will naturally feature elsewhere on the site. If the DMO writes a blog or creates a category page that mentions or features the business, those pages have the ability to outrank the business product page for a branded search.  If the provider neglects to fill out their product page or it is poor quality, they run the risk of not ranking at all for branded searches for their business. This is particularly true if the business brand contains keywords that are present elsewhere on the site. The best thing that a provider can do is to get their own website in position 1 and aim to get their business product page as high up page 1 as possible to increase their exposure and generate more search results which refer traffic directly to their site. 

So how can they do this?

First of all, providers can improve the quality of their product pages by including as much relevant information as possible, eg:

  • make full use of the image facility using high-quality images - this will increase any traffic coming from Google image search
  • always use the alt text field when images and uploaded, describe what the image is for accessibility purposes and if possible, add some search terms that come naturally. e.g. brand, location
  • make full use of the word count in the description and use any other fields available (prices, directions etc.) – a basic listing obviously only allows a limited amount of information to be included but the benefits of a more comprehensive product page (with a higher word count and the ability to feature more images) in terms of higher search engine rankings should be emphasised to the provider

Secondly, if individual providers have their Google Business and Bing Business profiles set up, the DMO site will not rank its product page above the provider’s own website for their branded search terms.  However, they will contribute to making the destination site stronger, helping it to rank for the high-volume search terms and generally creating a positive impact for all businesses featured on the site. 

Another way for tourism businesses to assist the DMO in ranking for these high-volume search terms is to reference the site wherever possible. There are many ways to do this.  If they have the opportunity to link out to the main destination site, they should do so.  This will help it to become associated with the local businesses and the area and Google will also see the local connections and therefore boost rankings for searches in that area.   Mentions on social media are also considered as another type of 'backlink' which will help to generate referral traffic. 

So by working in partnership with the DMO, provider businesses can boost their own exposure, make an essential contribution to the growth of tourism for the destination and ultimately to the region’s economy as a whole.   If you have any queries on any of the above points, don’t hesitate to contact your Account Manager.

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