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08-10-2016, 02:31 AM #1
The Roller Coaster of Resort Management SEO
You open your email that morning to a client informing you that Brand B's resort in Koh Samui will be closing in 10 days to be replaced with another resort in Koh Samui, but not in Brand B, but in Brand A's portfolio and the Resort in Phuket that was meant to be coming online this month in Brand A is on hold.
The World of Resort Management SEO
These ultra luxury resorts dotted around the world change hands and brands on a regular basis. That boutique resort you stayed in on your honeymoon may have changed names and branding several times since then, depending on the latest bid.
Hotel SEO is challenging enough given the dominance of OTA's in the travel market, but add constant name changes, packages, pricing structures and site redirects into the mix and you need to be able to adjust to the changes and get used to seeing your last property that you spent 12 months working on, get discarded in the space of 10 days.
The Ying and Yang for SEO
The worst part about these constant changes in resort names are the citation inconsistencies. The large OTA listings are corrected pretty quickly with the change of booking system info, but the rest takes some hard graft and patience, not to mention requesting ownership of the Google business page and the tidying up of duplicate map listings that exist in several names and languages in some cases.
The ying to the citation yang is that you uncover hundreds of brand mentions for the previous resorts name online. You are not going to request changing the link ( you have already redirected the old site ) what you are going to do is send them the new resorts media pack. Chances are if they wrote about the old resort, then they will appreciate being told about the changes and any new offerings. We usually see about 30% of the outreached sites publish a new article about the new resort.
If the brand has never operated in that particular region before, you need to kick the content machine into overdrive. How to get there, diving spots, golf courses, national parks, beaches, spas, eating out. If you do have content but on another site that previously closed, it needs to be re worked and transferred across to the new site and of course you mine the old resorts website for any useful content that they had created.
Play on the Brands unique qualities with local press and bloggers. The resort that I work with have a couple of unique USP's that we use to our advantage to get coverage and local links fast. Eco-friendly credentials, these resorts create farms that produce all the produce for the resorts kitchens, local people can use a portion of the crop for themselves, which is a press winner, but throw in mangrove replanting and turtle protection and release, you get the main media interested.
Michelin starred chefs and a handful of celebrity names, gets the glossies printing articles about the new resorts, and wherever there is a celeb name involved you get the bloggers wanting a piece of the action.
I think I just made it sound like this all happens over night, it doesn't. What I am trying to illustrate is the process we use to generate hyper local and national links in a relatively short space of time.
Try explaining to Google business support that the ownership and name has changed when there are thousands of mentions still online with the old name and street view has not visited that island before.
As soon as the branding is up on the new resort, get an employee at the location to take pictures and add to the location via Maps.
Images play an important part in the travel market, especially when users are deciding on which resort to use, Don't be shy, get those images onto the business page. Make full use of the managed photo section: Interior, Exterior, Team, Food etc etc
The Developer Relationship
Invariably you will be working with different developers or agencies as the Resort Group evolves. The resorts I work with happen to be in the ass end of nowhere, great for a holiday, but not for developers, who seem to follow suit.
Establish a working relationship quickly and be prepared for a lot of hand holding. A SEO Jedi will have them gobbling up structured data markup without them realizing in no time ( he says with a grey head of hair ).
So the next time you hire a Jeep and end up on the wrong side of the island because the Map directions are screwed up, it's the next thing on my list to fix!
08-10-2016, 06:03 AM #2
Re: The Roller Coaster of Resort Management SEO
Thanks so much Tim for an eye-opening article!
I have never worked in this market. The OTA's were enough to keep me away.
So I had not thought of the additional challenges of frequent re-branding - but now that you mention it, that makes sense.
Anyone else have resort clients?
Have you faced some of the same obstacles???Is Our Content HELPFUL? Please pay the community back by sharing!
Linda Buquet .:. Google Local Specialist
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Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon". ;-)
08-10-2016, 06:33 AM #3
By Blake Denman in forum Local SEO Tools & SoftwareReplies: 16Last Post: 01-08-2016, 11:43 AM
By Linda Buquet in forum Consultant's CornerReplies: 0Last Post: 10-17-2014, 08:07 AM