No matter how you cut it, websites can be a massive, necessary investment for vacation rental companies. As technology has advanced and become a larger part of our everyday lives, people are spending more and more time searching for things online. This makes having a well-optimized website that ranks well in Google a must-have if you want to compete and earn organic traffic. Depending on your specific market, you could be competing with millions of other search results – which is why it’s so important to have ongoing SEO services for your vacation rental website.
A How To Guide on Deleting Content
What is a content audit and how can it help you increase website traffic + conversions. Let’s start with the definition: A Content Audit is a way to get rid of under performing low quality pages to improve the health of a website.
You can call us “techy”, or maybe even “nerdy” or “geeky”, but any way you slice it, we have digital marketing inside jokes that really only make sense to us marketers. I mean, let’s face it, SEO is a dark art. There are so many facets and changes that it’s not only hard to keep up with, but the learning curve takes YEARS to really master. Rather than just writing about SEO, SEM, Email and algorithm changes, lets bring out the funny!
There are many moving parts to GDPR, but the three main points are listed below:
Users must consent to the processing of their personal data and companies must explain how data is collected and the intention for utilizing data.
Users have the right for their personal data to be deleted/forgotten.
If a website experiences a data breach, it must be reported within 72 hours.
We know GDPR can be confusing, but for our customers primarily operating and marketing within the United States, this is what GDPR means for you:
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Opt-Choice for Email Marketing: Upon completing a contact form on your website, users should have the ability to opt-in if they wish to receive further emails from your company.
Google Analytics Settings: Since personal data is one of the largest components of GDPR, you can choose the amount of time Google Analytics retains data prior to deleting the information. This will not affect standard analytics on your site. Google Analytics presents customers with the following time-frame options for retaining data: 14 months, 26 months, 38 months or 50 months. ICND Digital Marketing customers have already had this completed on their behalf. If you’re using your own Google Analytics platform, you were likely already prompted to decide on this time frame.
We have done a case study of a vacation rental client of ours. Sample client launched their first website with ICND in early 2010. The website was clean, modern for the time, and we even developed a mobile site where their guests could book online (which was relatively new technology in 2010). In 2013, we decided it was time for an upgrade. While a mobile site is great, a responsive website is even better. Instead of having 2 sites, you now have one which responds to the viewer’s device. It’s easier for updates, and Google also prefers it. Computer screens are now wider than they were in 2010, so we designed the new site to be wider as well. We also assured that there was a prominent quick search box above the top fold. After all, the main goal of a vacation rental website is to get your viewers to search for a vacation rental, and ultimately book.
In the beginning of 2014, we started to see a hit in online traffic. This client had been on a steady marketing plan for years and there had been no major change in marketing strategy. We pushed to get the new website live, hoping that we would see a turn around in traffic and revenue upon launch. The new website went live in May of 2014. After 3 short months, we have seen some great increases! Now they are well above their numbers for 2013!
The image below shows their organic traffic for March 1 2014- August 13 2014 and March 1 2013- August 13 2013. The orange line shows 2013 traffic, the blue one shows 2014 traffic. You will notice that prior to the website launching, they were gaining less traffic this year than they had last. As soon as the website launched, 2014 traffic began to show as more than 2013.
Your website is the face of your company, so it is important to keep it up to date. Not only will it impress your viewers and potential customers, it will also impress the search engines, leading them to view you as the leader in your industry!
|#||Source||Revenue||% of Revenue|
|7||blu172.mail.live.com / referral||$4,624.80||0.80%|
If you add together Google, Bing, Yahoo and Aol, you will see $336,341.59 in revenue from ICND Organic SEO Efforts.
They have converted $57,470.53 from their Pay Per Click Campaign
They’ve converted $4,930.91 from their Facebook campaign
They’ve converted $4,624.80 from their email marketing campagin
This is of course not counting phone calls, which is often attributed to marketing efforts as well. And many of those direct leads (source #2) could have been coming from Facebook or other marketing sources. Marketing isn’t about just about converting online, it’s about putting your name in the back of people’s minds so when they’re ready to book, they find YOU!
Unfortunately, this client did not have ecommerce tracking on their site prior to 6 months ago, so we cannot compare this year’s online revenue to last years. However, we can tell that their traffic is up 22.33% from this same time last year (comparing 1/1/13-3/3/13 to 1/1/14-3/3/14). They’ve had over 6,000 more visitors on their site this year than last!
If you’re a current ICND client, talk to your account rep and make sure you are set up on Ecommerce Tracking or Goal Tracking. If you’re not an ICND client, contact us today for a free marketing analysis. This isn’t only for vacation rentals or retail sites. A “goal” can be as simple as someone filling out a contact form. If you don’t sell anything online, we still want to be able to track your leads and ecommerce and goal tracking are the perfect way to track this. Goal and Ecommerce tracking are a large part of ICND SEO efforts. It is important to not only see that you are getting traffic to your site, but also to see that the traffic is quality traffic that will convert to revenue. Numbers don’t lie. With the right amount of time and revenue invested into your marketing plan, we can help you grow too!
Our dedicated marketing team is hands on to help you and your company grow. If you’re interested in seeing similar results, contact your account rep or email@example.com today to discuss our recommendations for you!
Studies have shown (Framingham Heart Study) that men who regularly vacation are 32% less likely to die of heart related illnesses compared to men who do not take a regular vacation. What’s worse is that women who don’t vacation twice a year are 8 times MORE likely to suffer from a heart related illness. These studies reinforce the notion that happier, healthier people across the board, know that rest and relaxation are vital to their health.
The question is: are you capturing every demographic the correct way?
Today’s marketing tools make it easier than ever to target specific demographics:
Facebook Targeted Ads– Facebook ads have come a long way in terms of targeting. Users of Facebook today are revealing more and more information within their own profiles that Facebook has tactfully gained access to who each user is. If one bedroom condos are a large part of your inventory still in stock, the ability to create an ad specifically toward those in relationships with less than 2 children as well as including the unmarried and married with less than 2 children, ensures that those in your target segment are the only ones who are viewing such an ad.
Facebook Post Targeting– Did you know you can cater a post to specific demographics? Much like Facebook ads, specific post targeting allows you to display certain posts to current fans that you wish to capture. Suppose there are a number of units you’d like to see booked for an upcoming weekend. Depending on your vacation rental price points, wouldn’t it make sense to target to those solely within a day’s drive? Creating a targeted post highlighting this facet has the potential to yield higher results.
As a company with lots of vacation rental clients, we’re well versed in methods that vacation rental managers use in their own marketing tactics, both online and offline. While we’re largely concerned with online visibility, we also are aware that many conversions, advertising and promotion happen offline. From phone call conversions to brand awareness and local advertising, many vacation rental managers are struggling to accurately measure all of their efforts. It’s something we see everyday.
For some industries, it’s pretty easy to measure advertising spend. With many companies only spending dollars on pay-per-click and other digital marketing efforts, they can track all their efforts in a analytics tracking suite like Google Analytics. For online-only businesses, digital ROI is pretty easy to measure.
However, we have found several tactics for vacation rental managers to keep their online and offline marketing data into Google Analytics. It’s a fairly simple tactic that involves using two primary methods: separate, short domains for advertising and landing pages.
Let me explain.
Most offline marketing campaigns are on print flyers, newspapers, billboards and many other avenues. Nearly all of these advertisements usually have your website in the bottom of the ad – and that’s impossible to track. People who visit by directing entering your website into their URL bar are counted as direct visitors, with no more information about where they came from available for you to see.
If your website does a few hundred or thousand direct visits per month, how can you tell if a new billboard or print ad caused that rise in traffic? You can’t. It all goes into Google analytics as direct website traffic and is no different than people who may have already known your brand or visited your site before. So, marketing managers, when it’s time to renew that billboard or print ad, how in the world can you tell if it worked?
Enter a vanity domain (or many vanity domains). A vanity domain is basically a shorter version (or just alternate version) of your website that you can control and measure easier when it’s only placed where you know about it. For example, if we used http://www.icnd.net as our only domain that we placed on a print ad that was sent to vacation rental managers, we’d know that anyone who used that domain came from that ad. We could then apply the secret sauce of this tactic (google analytics campaign variables) to find out in analytics exactly how many people arrived at our website from this ad.
Here’s the steps we’ll take to measure this:
Summer is over and that means news and announcements in the SEO world are heating up. In the last few weeks Google has made some changes leaving many SEOs and marketers lamenting days gone by. Let's look at the announcements and what that means for us: