We all know that when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO), all sectors have their quirks, but the restaurant and hotel industry is very clean.
Potential customers can get almost everything they need to make a buying decision on Google Maps, Google Reviews, Yelp and other review sites such as TripAdvisor for these two sectors. This makes working with quotes and critics especially important for places like restaurants, hotels, B & Bs, pubs, cafes and bars. Today, I will speak about a recent study that highlights how companies in this industry take quotes and reviews seriously and gives advice on how to benchmark your business against competitors and take the lead.
A Numbers Game
In a recent study of SEO quotes by BrightLocal (my company), we analyzed local citations and rankings of more than 120,000 local businesses in 26 different industries. In a slice of data never seen before, we grouped together what we call "hotel" companies (hotels, B & Bs, restaurants, cafes, pubs and hotels) – 11,655 companies in total – and looked at the number of quotes the companies ranked at the top of the local pack
The average local company in first position has 86 citations. What you see above shows just how seriously this industry takes business listings and directories. The average hotel business in first position has 127 citations (an incredible increase of 48% compared to the average local business, percentage of fans!)
I would not want to attempt to link to these numbers, because there are many other factors that can affect local rankings, but there is a fairly strong correlation between the number of citations and the rank of your local pack .
My estimate for this industry, in particular, is that the number of quotes you have is a strong indicator of how seriously you are taking your local SEO. Those who generate numerous quotes in the large amount of available food and lodging directories will invest in many other areas, including reputation management, local link building, public relations, and optimization. on the site.
With so many ad sites available for hotels and restaurants (particularly compared to other niche industries such as law and medicine), it makes sense that homeowners often find themselves in the same position. business want to be seen in as many online sites as possible. Not only are consistent and many quotes still considered a low ranking factor, but these types of ad sites are very popular with the public. Your online visibility is influenced by your appearance.
But before creating as many quotes as possible for your hotel business, keep in mind that quality is generally considered more important than quantity. It's important to make sure that the quotes you create are consistent and contain as much accurate information as possible for potential customers and search engines.
For beginners, it is essential that your name, address, phone number and website URL (NAPW) be exactly the same (or as close as possible) to all quotes. Inaccurate information has been shown to severely affect trust in businesses, especially those with physical facilities, so you should make sure that any changes you make to NAPW are for every quote you have.
You must also make sure you do not add your business to an old citation site. Relevance is a key factor in local ranking. It is therefore important to limit your participation to the relevant sites in your area or region. In fact, these tips should apply to all industries, not just hospitality!
Lists of wealthy businesses
Today, home business listings are no longer solely composed of name, address and telephone number (NAP). They can include photography (by company and by customer), consumer reviews, video, sample menus, attributes and more. Therefore, it is very wise to add as much detail as possible to these lists.
In the case of Google My Business (GMB) ads, most consumers will not visit your carefully designed and optimized website and make their decision based solely on what they see in your ads. That's why your GMB list should give the best first impression possible.
You can control some items in the list. The images you download, the descriptions you write, and the categories you select will all have an impact. But things you can not control are perhaps more important, such as user-generated photography and consumer reviews. As trust moves away from business and ends up in the hands of peers, ensure that your customer experience is excellent so that satisfied customers make excellent comments and that the photos are now essential.
How to Generate and Manage Reviews
If good reviews are such an important factor for online and offline productivity of a hotel business, how do you get them? Here are some tips to get you started on the road to a five star hotel business.
1. Truly provide excellent service. No fake review or assassination of a character from the competition will reverse the effects of a deplorable customer experience. If you deliver a mediocre experience, your reviews will reflect it, so do not start investing time and money to get feedback from your customers unless you're sure the feedback will be positive.
2. You can ask for reviews, but be careful where and how. In all your e-mails, on your postcards and on your premises, include links to the main review sites, but keep in mind that different sites have their own restrictions and abuse.
Yelp, for example, does not allow "solicited reviews," and Google's guidelines state that you can not only ask people who have had a positive review experience.
3. Ask for specific words to include in the journal. We believe that including relevant keywords in reviews can improve your company's relevance signals and improve the ranking of local packs. Do not be afraid to be initiated and ask your customers to include certain keywords. How you do this is yours, though. You could be as bold as saying "Please use a word X leaving your comments" or as discreet as asking "How would you rate our organic coffee?" Or "Do you think our restaurant was accepting dogs?"
4. Always respond to reviews, even if you think they are fake. Although I recommend that you remove false reviews, you will not be able to delete all of them. Instead of not answering, leave a basic answer polite, so your answer is not empty. Even if it's simple and non-committal, the fact that you've left an answer shows readers the type of business they face and gives you the opportunity to reveal and reinforce the personality of your brand.
5. Make your Instagram nickname public and visible. For restaurants, Instagram replaces TripAdvisor as a source of restaurant reviews, according to top TripAdvisor contributors:
I recommend that you make your Instagram user name easy to find on the list. A typical business search on Instagram will lead to photos, comments (sometimes more honest than reviews) and happy faces, which you can not beat for authenticity. And the fact that someone has been willing to share a picture of his Instagram experience is a tacit endorsement of your business.
About the author
Jamie Pitman is responsible for content at a local SEO tool provider BrightLocal . He has worked in digital marketing for almost ten years and has specialized in SEO, content marketing and social media, managing successful marketing projects for clients and employers. During this time, he wrote his blog, writing more than 300 articles on a wide variety of digital marketing topics for various businesses and publications.