As a travel agent or business owner for a travel agency, you know that traveling can be very stressful for some of your clients. That’s why they turn to you for assistance and guidance on planning the perfect trip.
But, because the travel industry is so competitive, you must develop a great local search marketing strategy to make sure that new clients are able to find you online before your competitors.
Here are three reasons why local search marketing matters for your travel business:
1. Inconsistent or incorrect data will ruin your local search ranking.
You know that most of your clients use your services to travel to a new place, and because they're going somewhere that's unfamiliar, they turn to Google or other search engines to find everything they need when they arrive.
Just the same, clients who have never used a travel agency before will research to find the best nearby travel agency when they plan their vacation.
What if these new customers can’t find you on the digital map because your information is incorrect or inconsistent?
It’s crucial that you keep your information up-to-date across all your business pages to maintain a high search ranking and to show up more easily on search engines.
This includes your:
- Business name
- Location address
- Phone number
- Website URL
Search engines place a lot of importance in consistently accurate data, and if even one directory receives something that's wrong, it could hurt your search ranking and keep you from showing up first in search results.
Plus, if any of these are inaccurate, you may confuse potential clients who could search the wrong address or call the wrong phone number, and this will cause you to lose business.
2. We search locally for everything.
Hyperlocal search is becoming increasingly popular, and now, almost everyone uses search engines to find businesses near their location.
In fact, most people expect their search results to automatically be localized and some don’t even use phrases such as “near me” when they search online anymore.
As we mentioned, having your travel business’s online information consistently correct will make a huge difference in you being found online.
However, to be found even more easily, you'll want to have a solid presence on social media platforms such as Facebook or Instagram, as well as plenty of relevant keywords throughout your main website so that search engines pick up your business in your clients' search results.
3. Mobile and voice search is becoming more popular.
Since the world is going digital, the way we search for businesses is also drastically changing.
People are searching more frequently on their phones, and 48 percent of mobile consumers start their search on search engines.
Because of this, you need to have your business’s website optimized for mobile to reach those clients who are on-the-go. Plus, if your website isn’t mobile-friendly, search engines can penalize your business and this can lower your search ranking, making it more difficult for clients to find you.
Consumers are also beginning to search for businesses using voice search with smart speakers such as the Amazon Echo or iPhone's Siri.
Currently, 40 percent of adults use voice search every day, and we expect that number to rise as voice search becomes more common and accessible.
When your clients use voice search, they won't just say a couple words to find what they're looking for; they'll ask the entire question. For example, a common question they might ask could be "what time does (your travel agency) close?" or "where is the closest travel agency?"
These questions serve as long-tail keywords, and if your website has enough keywords that reflect those questions, or an FAQ section that answers those questions, you will be more easily found through voice search.
We're not saying that you should completely abandon your traditional marketing tactics to be found by clients in your area. However, digital marketing is much more impactful since your clients are more connected to the Internet than ever before.
And, although your travel agency can benefit from paid advertising or social media, it's important to have a solid local search marketing strategy as a foundation for your digital marketing plan.
For more information on local search marketing, check out these resources: