Get online bookings without a big marketing budget
Get found online, get more bookings in 2021
The rapid changes in online behaviour and adoption of digital over the last six months, means it is now more important than ever to put energy into getting found online and keeping hold your customers longer-term.
During a recent InFocus webinar, Jaye Cowle, Owner of Launch Online shared with us the low down on what free, and often underused resources are available to help hospitality businesses in Cornwall get found online and get more bookings in 2021.
Google My Business
The example below shows a search for ‘Hotel in Cornwall.’ Google My Business will show a map location of the top hotels available in Cornwall, these are shown even more prominently on mobile devices. They will also provide star ratings against each listing.
Google will show your reviews prominently in the search results which is why getting good reviews from your customers is so incredibly important.
How do I create my Google My Business listing?
1) Once you have logged into your Google account you will see your ‘Google My Business’ dashboard. Here you can show your opening hours, address, bank holiday or seasonal hours as well as telephone numbers.
2) Ensure your telephone number is accurate. On mobile map search results, the telephone number will be clearly displayed with an option to call direct from the map search result, so it is very important that your telephone number is accurate.
3) Add your products and services. Add your services and a description about what you do. It is really important that you keep it updated. You can also add your Covid response policy on here and if you offer click and collect. Use key phrases in your description, like ‘sea views’ or ‘family holiday in St Ives’, for example.
4) Add a link to your booking system. The current trend when booking holidays, is direct through your website. You can also add a link to book through a third-party website like Booking.com, for example.
5) Keep tabs on all of your reviews and always reply to reviews through Google My Business.
6) Add offers, these will also show up in map search results.
7) Add photos. Your customers can add photos, but it is important to upload your own up to date, refreshed imagery.
8) Diarise to review your Google my Business listing once a month update your photos and encourage customers to leave reviews.
9) Ensure the location and pin is accurate, many people use the map results to get directions and if you pin is in the wrong location it will lead to some very unhappy customers searching for your address.
10) Don’t forget to do the same on all your location listings such as Bing Places for Business and Facebook too.
What are Google rich snippets and how to make the most of them?
Information showing in the ‘People also ask’ section of a Google search is called Featured Snippets. This section helps people refine their search or get quick answers within the search results. As business owners, you can get ideas for blog posts and content from the Featured Snippets. Google love to use a bullet point list in Featured Snippet results. : It provides information that is easy to serve that up in bite sized chunks. Google assistant and other smart assistants will also read out these bullet points.
PR for your hospitality business
PR is also crucial, explains Jaye.
Having authoritative links in press articles gives people confidence about who to choose when bookings their next holiday or clicking on a link for ideas.