Do you have a website you are trying to market online? Do you want to get more paying customers? If you answered yes to these two questions, this article is for you.
Below are 28 different ways to build links to your website and to market your hotel online. Why are links important you ask? Well, links are an essential part of search engine optimization. The more number of quality links you have pointing to your website from other authority websites, the more important and relevant you are in the eyes of Google. This in turn will increase your rankings on Google which will result in more customers visiting your website! Also, quality links pointing to your website are a great way to get inbound traffic directly to your website. So, I thought it would be informative to look at all the possible ways to get back links to your hotel’s website without spending a fortune. I have also listed an example of a hotel which has implemented each idea to show you that it can be done.
#1: Partner with local attractions
There are attractions like museums in every city that are popular among travelers and locals living in that area. Partner with them and give exclusive discounts for their members. This will give your brand more exposure, and also give you a quality link back to your website. Example: These 4 hotels in Tacoma have partnered with the Tacoma Art Museum to give something extra for their members. #2: Education University Partnerships
Getting links from .edu websites are one of the quickest ways to improve your search engine rankings. Are there universities in your area? Partner with those universities to offer discounted rooms for guests who are attending conferences or events that are happening at these universities. Sometimes you do not even have to give a discount. You just have to get in touch, and tell them that you would like to offer rooms for their conference attendees. An example of giving special rates for conference attendees: Am example of partnering without giving special discounts: #3: Conference & Events Partnerships
Another similar way to get more customers to your hotel and to get quality links to your website is to look at conferences or events that are happening in your city, and then partner with them to offer discounted rates for the conference attendees. Example: #4: Get listed in visitor guides for your city
Every city will have visitor guides talking about what to do in your city, favorite places to see, lodging options etc. Get listed in these guides as they are popular among tourists visiting your city. Example: #5: Rent space out
Do you have extra space in your hotel that could accommodate a complimentary business? You could even rent out the space to businesses to use only a few times a week. They key is to find and rent the space out to a business that is different and will generate PR for your hotel. Each time they advertise and promote their business, it is free advertising for your brand also. Example: #6: Venue for wedding planners
Are you open to hosting a wedding at your property? If yes, then there are numerous wedding planners who will list your hotels details on their website as a possible venue for weddings for their customers. Example: #7: Guest Blogging
Find other websites that cater to your potential customers, and offer to write an interesting guest blog on their website. By inserting links back to your website in these guest blogs, you can drive quality traffic to your website and get more exposure for your brand. Example : If your hotel is based in Osaka, Japan – then writing an article on ‘The Top 10 Attractions in Osaka, Japan’ and submitting it to local websites will result in more traffic for you. #8: Creative partnerships with local businesses
Partner with businesses in your city. Go for the extreme, and look to build relationships with businesses that are out of the ordinary. The more different it is, the easier it will be to build partnerships. Ask yourself why do people travel to your city? Find businesses that cater to this need, and build partnerships with them. Example : The Silver Cloud Inn bas built links by partnering with dentists and doctors in their city. #9: Disabled friendly
Are you doing something extra to cater to disabled people? If you have invested time and money building something of value that makes it easier for disabled people to use it, you can get editorial mentions from publications that cater to disabled people. Example:
#10: Piggyback on something that is famous in your city
Every city has an attraction that gets a lot of editorial mentions. Get in touch with these editors and build a partnership where your hotel gets promoted as a place to sleep for people who are visiting the city to see the attraction. Example: #11: Target Job Websites
This is a simple way to get more links by making use of job openings at your hotel. Remember that the more quality links you get, the higher your ranking will be on search engines resulting in more customers visiting your website. Although, this tactic won’t lead to immediate inbound paying customers, it will add up if you have a proper SEO strategy. #12: Partner with top bloggers in your area
List out all the top and mid level bloggers in your area, and find creative ways to partner with them. Will they review your hotel on their blog? Can you ask them to include your website details on their blogroll? Example: #13: Become the venue for an event or conference
Partner with event organizers and offer your hotel as a venue for their next event or conference. This will directly lead to more footfalls, and more people becoming aware of your hotel. Also, each time the event is promoted your hotel will automatically be prompted as the venue, resulting in more links to your website.
There are various websites that will list your hotels pictures on their websites. Use this feature, and at the same time also add a small description about your hotel with your website URL. If you have good, professionally taken pictures, you could also make them available for others to use. Example: #15: Promote your in-house restaurant
There are many restaurant review and listing websites online where you can promote your in-house restaurant. Use this to build awareness for your restaurant, and also get quality links back to your website. Example: #16: Donations
Making donations or sponsoring a charity or a cause that is dear to the local community is a great way to get increase your brand value, and at the same time get links to your website. Example: #17: Music Festivals
Music fans will travel a great distance to see their favorite band. Is there a music festival that is happening in your city? Can you partner with them to offer discounted rates for people who are traveling to be a part of the festival? Example:
#18: Conference and Meeting Venue
Do you have a conference hall that could be rented out as a meeting venue for corporates? If you do, then promote this online. There are various meeting venue finder websites online, that will advertise this for free and get your more footfalls to your hotel. Example:
#19: Target workshop organizers
This is similar to the step above, but instead of just listing your conference space in meeting venue finder websites, you could directly target people and businesses that regularly conduct workshops or seminars, and rent your space to them for their next event. Again, more footfalls, more brand exposure and more links! Example:
#20: Corporate offsite retreat
Can your hotel be used by corporates for their team building activities? Do you promote outdoor or adventure sports? Various corporate team building organizations will be happy to partner with you and to use your hotel as the venue for their clients next team building event. Example of a possible partner:
#21: Pet friendly accommodation listing
If you allow pets at your property, there are many websites online that will allow you to list your property with them, and will send you traffic to your website. Example:
#22: Promote promotional offers on deal websites
If you are running any promotional offers for your in-house restaurants, make sure to also promote these offers on daily deal websites, that will allow you to list the offers with details about your property. They will then promote your offer to all their customers, and get more people to your website. Example:
#23: Pit-stop partnerships
There are many outdoor adventure groups that regularly plan and organize tours for their members. Another way to increase footfalls is to contact these adventure groups that will be passing by your city, and to offer your hotel as a pit-stop/break in their route. This will also get you more quality links to your website as each time they promote their tour, your venue will be promoted as a pit-stop. Example:
#24: Create exclusive promotions targeting couples
If you can create a fun and interesting package for couples, especially close to Valentines day, then you can be sure that a lot of editors will run your story on their blogs. Example: Hawks Cay Resort came up with their couples package that gave an extra free night stay, plus other freebies like a bottle of wine, a sunset bike tour and a couples massage course, and this was picked up by a lot of editors online. Create something interesting around Valentines Day, Christmas or other important days that people want to share, and you will get lots of links through editorial mentions.
#25: Submit your website to top directories online
If you have some extra money from your online marketing budget, then I would recommend that you submit your website to a few top high-quality directories like Yahoo, DMOZ etc. Example:
#26: Nominate Your Website For Travel Awards
If you are recognized among your industry for providing outstanding service, and you have been awarded for this service, it will give your hotel more mentions online. A few award websites do allow you to suggest nominations for certain categories. Take advantage of these opportunities, to get links back to your website by nominating your website. Even if you do not win an award, you will get listed as a nominee. Example:
#27: Top Editorial Reviews
Identify the top online editors in your niche and invite them to review your hotel on their blog. The more editors that mentions your hotel, the more popular it will become online, and thus resulting in more reviews. These reviews are great as it increases the relevance and authority of your website with regards to search engines, and it will also lead to more inbound traffic directly from these websites. Example:
#28: Start a Blog
One of the easiest way to get more people to visit your website regularly is to write fresh content that is interesting and informative to your target customer demographic. Example: Orange County has started its Lifescapes blog that talks about the wild life around the resort through pictures.
While building an internet marketing strategy for your hotel’s website it is important to realise that you do not have to have a huge marketing budget to increase sales. A big marketing budget can make things easier, but what is more important is to build a specific strategy and to stick to it for a minimum of 4-6 months. Do not give up mid-way, and be consistent with what you are doing, and you will see results.