Five Steps in Utilizing Google Earth for Your Website SEO

By Hillary Bressler Fractional Digital CMO, PinchHit Partners | May 13, 2012

Since Google Earth launched, millions of Internet users have traveled the globe in search of everything from Mount Kilimanjaro to their childhood homes, all from the comfort of their own computers. But, this popular satellite-based application is far more than a way to pass the time at work. When integrated into a website, Google Earth is a powerful tool that can boost Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and support the overall marketing strategy.

First, it's important to understand that SEO is the process of improving the natural or organic volume of quality traffic to your website from search engines. When a search is conducted, the higher a site appears in the list of results, the more likely the user will click on the link to view the site. In fact, statistics show that 68 percent of Web users click on the first page of search results, and 92 percent click on the first three pages.

While popular strategies to increase SEO range from updating Web content to posting blogs with backlinks (website URLs), most site managers are unaware of the benefits Google Earth presents. Below are five steps those in the hotel industry should take into account when considering Google Earth as a way to increase website SEO.

**1. Revisit how your website supports the overall marketing goals**

All too often, websites are created simply because an online presence is a critical component of doing business. More time is typically spent thinking about what pretty photos to upload rather than how the website should support the overall marketing goals. Who is the site built for? Do you want to increase online bookings? Are you trying to drive phone traffic? Is it necessary to promote particular products online? Does the site help build your property's brand? Before moving forward with any website enhancement, take time to revisit how the site supports the overall objective.

**2. Determine how your audience is currently finding and utilizing your site**

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Coming up in June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.