Sunday, November 3, 2013
Optimizing Your Travel and Tourism Website For Increased Bookings
Your website can be a lean, mean booking machine, if it's optimized properly. By paying attention to a few small details, you can increase booking substantially.Money used for the very best booking engine is not a waste of money at all. Purchase a top-notch booking engine that is made for your particular travel business, whether it's a resort, hotel, tour operation or other.If you have to have one custom programmed, do it. It will earn back its cost a hundred times over. The booking center that you have on your website is available all day, all night, every day of the year so that everyone anywhere in the world can check prices and availability. More importantly, they can actually book while they are hot to do so. Be sure you get those sales by having a booking tool that is easy and quick to use!If you can, have an always-on toll-free number staffed by a good call center, as there are a lot of people who would rather talk to someone to book their vacation.You must also try to get people involved with your online presence. Contests, message boards, guestbooks, blogs and other social media tools like Twitter are valuable assets to your marketing campaigns. These tools will help you listen and respond to your consumers, engage them in dialogue and build a solid reputation of trust over the long term. More immediately, you can use them to create buzz whenever you need a short boost. You will gain loyalty to your brand and gain greater market share as a result.You can also take advantage of the viral nature of social media and increase your mailing list dramatically. Guestbooks and message boards will get you fresh content on your site every day, plus longtail keywords, in addition to having testimonials posted on your site that you didn't have to do anything to get!Always keep your web pages loading quickly. Minimize the number of gadgets, scripts and stylesheets that load. Make your image sizes as small as possible while still retaining quality. Consider other hosting services if your site still is slow.Offer freebies to site visitors so they can take away something to remember you by. A wonderful photo of your destination they can put on their desktop as wallpaper is very inexpensive to you and has great sticky qualities.Don't forget to have a call to action on your website, in as many places as possible! People forget to do this often, and it definitely reduces sales.It is very possible for any travel or tourism destination to have a website that successfully promotes their business. None of these ideas are difficult to enact, and mostly don't cost much either. All you need is some time and to pay attention to the details.