As a travel planner or agent, you probably spend the most of your time building trips, talking to clients, answering emails, creating proposals and maybe updating your site every once in awhile. Most of all, you probably don’t add SEO to your to-do list. But today, we’re going to show you why you should add SEO to your list and why it is so valuable.
Before we dive into ways to amp up the SEO on your site, let’s look at what exactly SEO is and how it can become your new best friend in marketing.
Photo Credit: smamarketing.net
SEO is an acronym for search engine optimization. It’s the process of proving the relevance and value of your site for a particular search term to move your content up in the search engine rankings. For example, when you search “caribbean cruise”, the top results that appear have dominated SEO terms matching to that search.
That is what you want to try and do when adding content to your site. But let’s face it, you probably won’t be able to rank on the first page of search results for “caribbean cruise” but you might be able to rank for “Best Family-Friendly 7-Day Eastern Carribean Cruise”! We will show you how with different ways you can drive SEO to achieve more page views and clients.
When search engines “crawl” through your site to verify that you have quality content, it is basing its discoveries off of backlinks, domain age, traffic, fresh content, and of course, words.
So how can you stay on top of your SEO game? One way is the use of photography on your site.
Optimize the Images on Your Site
The images you post on your site are just as important as the words you use to build your post. When possible, use your own photos–not only will doing so give your travel expertise credibility but will also look great for SEO because it is original content. If you are sharing a photo found elsewhere, no worries–just be sure to credit the photo’s original source.
Pay Attention to Image Size
It’s important to make sure the photo size is as small as possible to help with image and SEO to send your image to the top when searching for images. We like to keep our photos no greater than 50k.
Name it Something Great
Another way to send your photos to the top of a search is the name. If the photo’s name is “D342_15”, your photo will likely, not get found. Instead, name it something related to the post. For example, a post about all-inclusive beach resorts in Mexico could have a photo uploaded as “best-inclusive-resorts-in-cancun”.
Pro Tip: Be sure to use hypens to seperate words in file names and not underscores. Google interprets hyphens and underscores differently.
Finding a Plugin to Help with SEO
If you are using WordPress, there are a lot of plugins out there that you can install to get help with your SEO. Here are some of our favorite:
This is the plugin that we use at Travefy. The plugin helps to give you a green light (literally) if your SEO is good on your blog post. If you need to add more optization to your post, it will notify you to do so with a red light. This is a great plugin for beginner and intermediate bloggers to use.
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All in One SEO Pack
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Always link to an old article you wrote whenever you can. You can also talk to other blogs or fellow travel agents and see if they will link to your article or blog.
Pro Tip: Don’t try to game the system on this by trading links too much because Google can easily sniff that out.
Creating Relevant Content
Creating relevant content might be pretty obvious, but it’s extremely important because you need to know your target and expertise so you can knock SEO out of the park! For example, if you sell ultimate ski trip packages for groups, then you want to be writing articles like “The 10 Best Ski Resorts in the U.S. for Groups” or “The Best Ski Lodges for Group Events in Canada”.
Make lists of specific things that you want to rank for and plan your content around those. Make sure topics aren’t too general. They need to be specific enough that you can get ahead of the competition.
Relate to Your Content
If you have 3-4 specific areas of keyword targeting, like these:
- Budget trips to Italy
- French wine country trips
- Family-friendly Mediterranean cruises
- Mediterranean all-inclusive beach vacations
Then you want to make sure the majority of the content you produce relate or connect to these topics. You can open your focus and it doesn’t harm anything, but creating keyword density and content focus tells search engines you are an expert in a specific area.
Create a mix of long-form content and short-form being under 300 words and long form being 1,000+ words.