Hotel and resort clients often ask us if their website should include a blog. As you might suspect, our answer is “it depends.”
The downside is pretty easy to lay out. Like any marketing initiative, blogging requires an investment of time and money.
On the upside, blogging gives you another kind of social media presence that has proven SEO value, if you approach it in a smart way. Search engines love fresh content and with modern content management systems, blogging is a relatively inexpensive way to publish. Sites that publish regularly are crawled regularly, which can help keep your entire site fully indexed, helping all your efforts gain traction.
What follows is an overview of our approach to blogging for hotels.
A Simple Approach to Blogging
The key with any on-page SEO effort is to consider three questions:
- What do I have to say?
- Do potential guests care about it?
- How would they search for it?
If the goal is to attract new visitors to your website, put yourself in their shoes. What do they care about? What kind of questions do travelers or guests ask your concierge? Gather a list of ideas from your team and do some keyword research to learn how travelers search for information on the topic.
Google’s search suggest provides an easy way to see if there is search volume on any phrase:
The farther up the list a phrase is displayed, the greater the search volume. In general, if a phrase shows up in search suggest it will have a least 10 searches a month. Choose an iteration that is as specific as possible. Typically, the longer the phrase, the easier it is to rank for it.
Now comes the tough part. You’ve got to write something valuable that pays off the key phrase you’ve chosen. How do you define value? The customer will want straight, unvarnished information that’s easy to digest.
Bake your chosen key phrase into the blog post’s URL, title, meta description and copy without losing sight of the fact that first and foremost the copy has to make sense for humans.
Keep posts between 350-500 words and include appealing relevant images with your copy.
Make sure your blog presents a simple way to subscribe by email. Produce new content at least twice a month or once a week if possible. Publish mid-morning on Monday or Tuesday and push out content with links on Facebook, Twitter or your most important social channels.
If your website is built on a CMS platform like WordPress you can add a blog with the click of a button. The next step is to create an editorial calendar that is based on keyword research. Develop a list of topics of interest to potential customers. Then assign each topic to the subject-matter expert on your team who’s best qualified to write the post. Each post should be focused on one single key phrase.
If you’d like to learn more about blogging, reach out to us. We can help hotels and resorts craft an editorial calendar and execute a blog strategy that will drive qualified organic traffic and extend your social footprint. Contact us by email or call us at 609.466.9187 ext. 132.