4 years ago
 

Six myths about SEO hoteliers are still believing

NB: This is a viewpoint by Brandon Dennis, technical marketing manager at Buuteeq.

Last week I took an informal survey and asked a group of hoteliers we work with what the top SEO questions they often hear.

Below is a summary of some of those items that came up during the course of the discussions which can pretty much be loosely described as six myths around SEO in the hotel sector:

Myth #1: I must constantly update my content to rank

This myth stems from Google’s November 2011 “freshness” update, which is largely misunderstood. Turns out that the freshness algorithm only affects between 6-10% of searches, and only searches about three types of events:

  • Recent events or hot topics (protests, disasters, celebrity deaths)
  • Regularly recurring events (presidential elections, quarterly stock earnings, Black Friday)
  • Frequently updated ideas, events, or things (the latest iPhone news, celebrity trial updates, the latest Mars rover findings).

Hotels are none of these. Hotels are stationary brick-and-mortar objects that rarely change, and so the freshness algorithm doesn’t apply to most hotels. The homepage description of a hotel and its area will rarely change, just like supplemental content like reviews for local points of interest.

The only time this wouldn’t be true is if an event were associated with a hotel. Suppose a recurring conference takes place at the same hotel every year, making the hotel name synonymous with the recurring conference. The freshness algorithm might then come into play for queries related to conference updates at that hotel.

The freshness algorithm does not apply to the majority of hotel queries, so we need not worry about it. But even when we did, the tiny, frequent web page changes recommended by some SEOs wouldn’t help to boost the article’s freshness.

There are some services out there that will claim to game Google’s freshness algorithm by installing a script that updates the published date of the article every day, or randomly injects new words into the article.

None of these tricks work because Google looks for substantial changes made to the body of a document to qualify as a change worthy of getting a boost from the freshness algorithm.

Freshness exploiters are further frustrated by Google, which considers several off-page indicators when judging a page’s freshness. These include the date of recent backlinks and the attention of recent visitors.

A page that only has ancient backlinks won’t qualify for a freshness boost, because Google will conclude that the content isn’t as pertinent to users looking for up-to-date information. Similarly, if visitors used to spend ten minutes reading your page, but lately they leave after 30 seconds, the freshness algorithm may conclude your content is less interesting to people today.

Old, static content is just fine, as long as it continues to answer a user’s query. In an excellent article on SEOmoz by Cyrus Shepard, he illustrates this with the perfect example:

“Google understands the newest result isn’t always the best. Consider a search query for ‘Magna Carta’. An older, authoritative result is probably best here. In this case, having a well-aged document may actually help you.”

Take Home Point:

  • Make quality content and only revise it to improve its quality.

Myth #2: I can pay someone to get me the first spot on Google for highly competitive keywords

This myth is a sad one. I can empathize with hoteliers who want to be the #1 spot for “hotels in Miami” or “Seattle hotels”. Who wouldn’t want that spot?

Because hoteliers want it so badly, they sometimes fall victim to the outlandish promises of some unscrupulous SEOs, costing them thousands each year.

Few hotels will ever gain the #1 spot for their so-called “money words” because there are dozens or even hundreds of other hotels trying to get that spot too, and because there are established websites that already have them.

Use Google to search for the two examples I gave above. Ignoring Adwords ads, Hotel Finder, and the Google Local block, we see Expedia, Hotels.com and TripAdvisor as the top three results for the first query, and TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Travelocity for the second. In fact, no single, independent hotel ranks on the first page at all for either query, outside the Local block.

This is because the sites that rank have older domains, hundreds of thousands of backlinks, and web traffic we can only imagine. It would take millions of dollars and decades of work to oust them. It’s impossible.

Instead, it pays to focus on specific long-tail keywords and Google’s other products, like Google+ Local (using Google+ Local is how you appear in the local block). Long-tail keywords are usually easier to rank for, even though many of them are now being targeted by the big guys.

Specific neighborhoods like “hotels in green lake washington” or “camden harbor maine hotels” may still be tricky, but you’ll have much more success than targeting broad keywords.

Take Home Point:

  • No amount of money can buy the top spot on Google, though it is possible to rank well for specific key phrases after hard work and time.

Myth #3: I need to stuff my page with keywords and change them often

We can all agree this myth is a bad one. And yet, you’d be shocked how often I hear hoteliers tell me they want X number of keywords stuffed into the header, footer, or peppered throughout the page to get a keyword density of X%.

This tactic is an old one. It is so old, and so bad SEO, that it has its own Wikipedia entry. It’s hard to find any recent condemnation of keyword stuffing from industry thought leaders because this myth has been busted for so long, and those who use this tactic have been suffering for so long.

Back in 2007, Google head of web spam Matt Cutts entered a humorous encounter he had with keyword stuffing on his blog, again demonstrating how easy it is to spot keyword stuffing and how swiftly Google will penalize it.

Just because readers don’t see keyword stuffing, doesn’t mean Google can’t. Keyword stuffing was so prevalent early in the history of search engines that Google began completely ignoring the meta keyword field entirely years ago, as Matt Cutts explains on the Google blog in 2009.

It is best practice to leave the meta keywords field completely blank, and to use keywords in meta titles and descriptions sparingly. See this article on Search Engine Watch for a great guide to using keywords effectively.

In short, Google will penalize websites they think are keyword stuffing, keeping them from ranking for that keyword at all. Changing keywords on a page won’t help it rank for new words, but instead will harm any ranking factors the page has and force it to start fresh for new words.

All of this over optimization is an exercise in futility.

Take Home Point:

  • Write for people, not robots.

Myth #4: I can’t rank well without a blog

This myth exists because blogs make it easy to churn out content quickly. Over time, somehow SEOs have convinced hoteliers it’s the blog itself that has magical SEO properties, allowing blog content to rank higher on Google than non-blog content.

The idea is silly for several reasons, which I explored in my previous post here on Tnooz: Are Blogs Really That Important to Hotels?. Google ranks content, not the software used to produce content.

Take Home Point:

  • Google doesn’t care if you use a blog or not; they prefer to rank quality content they can understand.

Myth #5: All backlinks are equal

This myth often coincides with hotels who hire agencies to get backlinks for them, paying $X for X backlinks through the next six months.

The agency will gain easy, low-quality backlinks and then present a report for a job well done. Sadly, not all backlinks are made the same, and many of them that hotels pay for are actually worthless.

Nofollow backlinks:

  • For years now, Google has given webmasters the ability to keep their domain “juice” all to themselves by marking external links with a rel=”nofollow” tag. This tag tells Google that the author does not endorse the website he is linking to, and that Google should pass no authority from the author’s domain to the website. This means that any link gained that has the nofollow tag is worth far less than regular dofollow links. The links described below are often nofollow on modern websites.

Blog Comment Links:

  • Most blogs that allow comments forbid commenters from including links in the comments, or they’ll tag the links with nofollow, to prevent blog comment spam. While blog comment links have had a history of benefiting websites, they were hit hard after Google Penguin, and are now worth much less. Google can tell a link is in a blog comment, and will pass less authority to the website.

Forum Signature Links:

  • Similar to blog comments, forum posts and signatures by members often include links not manually approved by the website owners. Google has chosen to only recognize authority from links placed as part of an editorial decision by the website owner. Since there is little to no editorial oversight for forum posts and signatures, these links pass little authority.

Links in Press Releases:

  • Press releases pass no SEO benefit. Don’t take my word for it—Matt Cutts explained the issue on his blog way back in 2005. Press releases are a good tool to get noticed by reporters, who might write an article about your hotel and include a link that helps your SEO. But press releases themselves, even those that include links with great anchor text, won’t help your SEO. Google disavowed link authority from press releases because many people pay to have press releases listed—they aren’t included because of an editorial decision by an author. People use press releases to buy backlinks, which Google actively combats.

Sidebar and Footer Links:

  • Many websites, such as WordPress blogs, have dynamic sidebars and footers identical for every article on the blog. Many people place external links in them, which could equal hundreds or thousands of links from one website to another. This isn’t a bad thing per se, but Google gives far less credibility to links in dynamic footers, headers, or sidebars, as opposed to editorially placed links in the body copy of an article.

I made a heatmap last year that shows where the best place is on a page to get a link from.

Take Home Point:

  • Don’t pay for backlinks. Instead, seek editorial links placed in an article’s body.

Myth #6: Even new websites, with great SEO, can take the #1 spot in 30 days

Frustratingly for many of us, building online authority takes time. Loads of time. When you launch a new website with a new domain name, you start at the bottom rung of an infinitely tall ladder, with websites like Twitter or the US Government at the top, and infinity between you.

To climb that ladder, it takes constant, quality content, building online relationships with people who can pull you up the ladder, and time.

No one can launch a new website and pay someone to take the SEO ladder to the top. It just doesn’t work that way. Google writes time limitations into their algorithm to prevent this kind of elevator elevation, because they only want to offer their users quality, trusted content that has stood the test of time.

Now obviously, they sometimes get it wrong, and you’ll find some crazy website that has nothing to do with what you queried. But Google is the #1 search engine in the world because, for the most part, their algorithm works.

This is why I recommend to new clients that they launch their web presence immediately, even if their hotel is not open yet. The sooner they launch their website, the sooner they start their journey towards thought leadership. The sooner they launch, the sooner they collect quality backlinks and building brand recognition online.

Take Home Point:

  • It takes time and effort to build a quality web presence. Good things can’t be rushed.

Summing up

All of these myths stem from the idea that you can pay money to manipulate Google. When I get questions about these myths, I remind people that Google is a multi-billion dollar company with more resources than us, and some of the brightest talent on the planet.

The likelihood that a rinky-dink black-hat SEO agency from Australia can do anything to outsmart Google is very unlikely (nothing against Australia, mind you).

Instead, we should spend our time and money building something great. Having a friend or trusted service provider help with SEO is just fine, as long as that person is trying to help Google understand your content, not trying to game the system.

If the latter, it could come back to bite you.

NB: This is a viewpoint by Brandon Dennis, technical marketing manager at Buuteeq, a digital marketing system for hotels. He manages Buuteeq’s SEO, paid media channels, social outreach, and the company blog. You can connect with him on Twitter @buuteeq.

NB2: Guide to Google+ for hotels.

NB3: Hotel search keyboard image via Shutterstock.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInEmail to someone
 
 
Special Nodes

About the Writer :: Special Nodes

Special Nodes is the byline under which Tnooz publishes articles by guest authors from around the industry.

 

Comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Murray Seward

    Brandon, great article. It’s perfectly inline with the hoteliers we work with too. All too often they have been sold services that simply do not, and will never, provide the ROI they hope for.

    In addition to our website visitor alerts, we provide our hotel clients with a couple of extra reports that help them stay in control, including one that warns them in their so-called “money” keywords have fallen in rank on Google and Bing. Our quarterly Website Performance Report helps them analyze the ROI of their social media investments, and also alerts them to long tail keywords that are sending them good amounts of traffic.

    Your comment about Long Tail Keywords is so important, however, I find that hoteliers often feel it’s beyond their scope to create new pages for their site that focus on these powerful “money” search terms.

    Does Buuteeq’s service allow hoteliers to easily create new web pages focused on specific long tail keywords? I’ve heard great things about Buuteeq from one of my clients in Vancouver.

     
    • Brandon Dennis

      Thanks Murray, yeah, we have many clients with beautiful properties in Vancouver. I’ve been meaning to take a quick vacation to visit them!

      Yes, our Cloud DMS product allows hoteliers to log-in, write, and publish new articles focused on whatever keywords they wish, as often as they wish. They can change the article’s meta data to target specific keywords, and optimize the document with header tags, image alt text, link titles and more using our rich content editor. I made a video showcasing this process, here: https://buuteeq.zendesk.com/entries/20037151-video-articles

      We’ve tried to give hoteliers all the tools necessary to chase down their desired money words. Now we just need to work on education!

       
  2. Darren Craig

    Superb article. Despite all of this I still find hotel or Inn owners that don’t have even the most basic of online prescence, and can’t get them across the line. I think I’ll have to print this article out.

    Without wanting to sound like a cliche, I think online reputation management is effectively the ‘new SEO’ for tourism (and other) businesses. Again, it’s not rocket science it’s just following best practise that evolves over time with new online real platforms, its just hard for smaller businesses to manage on their own. Some of that reputation management ultimately requires some of the basic building blocks you mention above (effectively SEO), then the encouragement of gaining reviews and feedback.

    Thoughts anyone?

     
  3. Sandip J.

    Very good article, Brandon.

    You need to write an article on the myths around social media for hotels. It seems to me as if most of what is recommended, blogs, fans, tweets etc. etc. is of very little use to hotels.

    How many guests want to connect, after checking out, with a hotel they stayed at in a town far away from home where they may never go again?

    How many people actually ask their FB friends online about which hotel they should stay at and how many actually believe that is good advice?

    We are also being told that hotels need to be engaged in social media because it helps their websites rank higher on search engines!

    -Sandip

     
  4. Oman Lerin

    Excellent Brandon !

    I completely agree with you. I would maybe just add one more thing to the attention of the readers.

    We also need to remind the context. Obviously if we are talking about an hotel in a big city, ranking on mainstream keywords is now something like ” Foget about it !” . You need to focus on long tail . But there are also plenty of hoteliers out there who are based in smaller cities and where optimizing websites and SEO strategy can still pay off.

    So paying somebody that is telling you that he wil get you in the magic spot on Google in a city of 400 hotels like Miami would be a mistake ( and probably an expensive mistake). BUT, if you are in a city of, let’s say 50 hotels, and your website doesn’t rank well, you probably should sit down and rethink the situation or try to find somebody to help you get a better position as this is probably still possible in your situation. At least, it’s still possible to do so in Europe where i am based.

    The tricky situation is when you get a page 3 or even page 2 on a competitive destination. Some people would be tempted to think that if they pay again the “backlink guy”, they will get a bit of sunshine on page 1. Sometimes, it’s possible but often it’s just the best you can get. Google mixes the results. There are already 7 official hotel websites on page 1 with the local block. So , Google places other type of websites on page 1 like big player OTA or Tripadvisor pages….which leave very very little spaces
    for another indenpendant hotel website.

     
  5. John Pope

    Brandon,

    A very thorough list, although you forgot to include THE most important SEO myth of all, which is:

    Myth #7 – Myth #Infinity: That SEO for individual hotels even matters anymore.

    As you pointed out in your article, between Hotel Finder, Paid Placement (AdWords), Google Local block and the plethora of very large, very well established and very well funded aggregator sites (e.g. TripAdvisor, OTAs, regional local listings sites, etc.), an individual hotel site has virtually no chance of being anywhere on the first two or three pages of SERPs.

    Bottom line for hoteliers is – Reality #1: SEO IS DEAD – LONG LIVE PAID SEARCH & MARKETING

    Google, and subsequently market dynamics, has made it next to impossible for any hotel, especially independent hotels, to rank well in organic results. Meaning hoteliers are now forced to invest heavily in SEM, and now Google+ Local or Hotel Finder, to generate any significant revenue from the Google channel, whatsoever. And, I suspect much of the traffic via Google is a result of the user finding the hotel first in their aggregator of choice site, then Googling the hotel’s specific name, if the customer prefers to book directly with the hotel.

    All realities above, incidentally, resulting in increases to Google’s top and bottom lines. Coincidence? I think not. Now that Google has effectively cornered the search market, they’re going to milk that cash cow for all it’s worth. To this there should be no dispute.

    To your credit, you did emphasize and recommend the most prudent strategy for a good web presence for hoteliers; which is to create great content for consumers and guests – and not worry about Google; it’s a fool’s game.

    On a side note, considering your deep understanding of the enigmatic PageRank algorithm, I was just wondering – do you happen to know how Cadbury gets its caramel inside the Caramilk Bar? Or, what are the 11 secret spices in The Colonel’s Original Recipe?

    Cheers. Nice article.

     
    • Brandon Dennis

      Great comment, thanks John. While I wouldn’t go so far as to say that SEO is dead, I agree that the starting point for many hotels, especially hotels with new websites, is paid search marketing.

      That said, hotels can still achieve great things over time by optimizing their websites for search. I have visited so many hotel websites that make rookie mistakes, like using Flash, or neglecting to have meta titles, or not including any relevant location based information on the homepage, etc. Fixing easy SEO issues can still help hotel websites rank for long-tail keywords not dominated by the ‘big guys’.

      Additionally, Google takes into consideration the quality of on-page content when deciding how high to rank a Google+ Local page in the local block. So, in addition to good reviews, a healthy website will help Google+ Local pages rank better.

      From the data I have access to, I can tell you that even today, in April 2013, a significant portion of our clients’ web traffic comes from organic search. It’s true that hotels can’t rely on search alone, and must pursue other marketing channels, such as PPC, referral marketing, daily deals, and so on. However, ignoring search completely with the assumption that SEO is ‘dead’ will simply lead to fewer direct reservations.

      And the filling in Cabury’s Caramilk Bar gets there using a process called ‘choco-caramel osmosis’.

      True story.

       
      • John Pope

        Brandon,

        I knew my hunch was right about you – forget about your musings on the secrets of hotel marketing; the secrets of the universe is your actual forte. 😉

        Alas, I’ll save my next questions about Free Masons and their links to the real motives behind the US Federal Reserve until next time. My fixation on Google conspiracies will have to remain a priority, for now.

        Given your company’s former affiliation with Microsoft, I’m curious, may I ask your opinion, and the general office scuttle-butt, on the ethics of Google’s strategies to continually push organic marketing opportunities further and further away from page one, and thereby forcing costly investment in paid search? And, more to the point, do you recommend to your clients to adopt alternative marketing strategies to drive revenue, other than a reliance on Google?

        I happen to be one of the ‘crazy ones’ who subscribes to the theory – “If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem” – which, I know, probably sounds pretty nuts.

        Speaking of nuts – Mounds or Almond Joy?

         
        • Brandon Dennis

          While buuteeq was founded by former Microsoft and Sony executives, our company doesn’t have any former past or present partnership with Microsoft. This leaves us free to suggest any number of marketing possibilities to our clients, including both Google AdWords and Bing Ads. I personally oversee our company’s PPC, and we use both Adwords & Bing Ads, in addition to other marketing PPC channels.

          We wholeheartedly encourage our clients to have more tricks in the bag besides Google SEO. We bake SEO into our product (meaning our product is designed to produce website technically competent in terms of SEO) and we also provide SEO training and insight through webinars and our blog. We suggest to our clients what I believe is a balanced view of online marketing–using SEO as one of the many tools in ones marketing toolbox.

          Our CEO Forest has what I think I’m free to say is a dim view of Google’s monopolistic search dominance (as he explored in a blog post entitled SEO is 8u115h1t which you can read here: http://www.buuteeq.com/blog/seo-is-8u115h1t/ ). My view is similar to his, though I will say that I do believe SEO can and does work for those who do it safely, wisely, and competently, and with much patience. I’ll use buuteeq’s website as an example–when I joined in 2010, we had a PageRank of 0 and 0 web traffic. After helming SEO for over 2 years, we’ve risen to a PageRank of 6 at the moment, and get a very healthy amount of ‘free’ organic traffic from many of the ‘money words’ we try to rank for. SEO success can be made, if you know what you’re doing.

          And Mounds. I’m not a big fan of coconut. It reminds me of gnawing on grass.

           
          • John Pope

            Sounds like Buuteeq clients are in VERY good hands. Kudos.

            Man after my own heart on the Mounds front, too – knew there was another reason why I liked you! 🙂

            Keep up the good work, Brandon.

             
      • John Pope

        Oh yah, I knew I forgot something.

        Here’s quite a revealing article on SEO tactics from a recovering travel industry SEO hacker, I thought some in the audience might enjoy. He questions Google’s PageRank efficacy and speculates on a few solutions for Google to consider in order to ‘fix’ the problem.

        http://martinmacdonald.net/i-quit-seo/.

        Enjoy

         
        • Brandon Dennis

          Interesting article. I saw this a few days ago and I certainly sympathize with him. And he’s right–Google does make mistakes, and sometimes spam gets through the gaps. But I think these are exceptions that prove the rule. The rule is this: Untold thousands of people attempt to game the system every day to promote their products on Google at the expense of deserving products. Thus, Google NEEDS to develop algorithms to combat spam and make SEO as much of a guessing game as they can, in order to keep search a viable product. Now maybe they fail at this–that’s certainly a valid argument. But the fact remains that spam is an issue, for Search as a general product, and without an algorithm to combat it, Search is a worthless product.

          So then really we can make 3 reasonable arguments:

          1) Search is a dying technology that we should all avoid because it doesn’t deliver on its promises.

          This argument is silly, because millions DO find what they seek using Search–thanks in part to spam-fighting algorithms.

          2) Search is a fine technology, but Google is a giant fail whale. We should all use Duck Duck Go or some other search engine instead, because they are better.

          A fine argument, but very subjective. We’re of course free to use any search engine we wish, and people’s tastes are different. However, as water follows the path of least resistance, people use a product that delivers the most success and requires the least effort. The fact that Google is the #1 Search product in the world is a quality indicator, I think.

          3) Search is fine, and Google is great at Search, but Google is evil. For ethical reasons, we should use something else.

          Again, this is a subjective argument. I’ve always steered clear of positions like this, because I think people are naturally inclined to resent the success of others and attach sinister qualities to large successes–such as Disney, for example. If one wants to be a white knight and disavow Google, that’s fine. But doing so won’t get them more customers.

          I find that many who vehemently dislike Google have simply tried to game the system and failed. There are of course exceptions where Google actively penalizes a website unjustly, but again, exceptions that prove the rule. It’s silly to bang your head against the Google wall and then cry when you start bleeding. Instead, climb the wall, brick by brick. It takes time, and you may slip and fall a few times, but eventually you’ll get over it.

           
          • John Pope

            Strong arguments and analysis, however, I think there’s an even more valid argument than the three you’ve listed above:

            4) Search, as we currently know it, is broken because it presents the user with the best and most savvy digital marketer / early adopter, and not necessarily with the best product or service for that particular person’s needs.

            For example: If I was to search for the cleanest hotel in London for a tech savvy guest that includes free WiFi and continental breakfast, I would most likely not see the new Citizen M hotel anywhere near the top of results because it just opened – and therefore has very little SEO juice.

            I can imagine there are billions of instances where this scenario has played out, where the savviest and most competent digital marketer gets the traffic, and therefore the business, rather than the best product or service provider because they chose the wrong technical help or they may have been a late adopter. This is an obvious flaw in Google’s product. But because of Google’s ubiquity and users’ deeply ingrained behavior, it’s likely their dominance will not change anytime soon.

            However, Google also understands this Achilles Heal very well, and is the reason they’re so afraid of vertical search platforms. Especially as access to robust technology becomes more available to challengers at constantly decreasing cost.

            Anyways, great discussion. Much to ponder.

            Cheers

             
  6. Lavan Jeyarupalingam

    Hi Brandon,

    Great to meet you at EyeForTravel’s event in San Fran the other week!

    Really enjoyed this article, some valuable points in there – especial the key takeaway that you can’t buy your way to a great SEO strategy. I’ll definitely be tweeting this!

    Lav – EyeForTravel

     
  7. John

    One of the best pieces of ‘SEO’ or general marketing advice that anyone ever gave me was to do real things, in the real world.

    For example, don’t just have a loose statement of support for a charity, actually invest and help create events and press which really does help that charity. Link to them, reach out to your users on their behalf, organise fund raising etc – effectively be a human and this will appeal to other humans.

    SEO was a boom industry, based on a lack of knowledge. Google killed it but making it a level playing ground (arguably, and I’m no Google fan, they will continue to manipulate results towards their own properties or to achieve their own long term goals). SEO then turned in Social, which has now seen PR companies jumping on the band wagon. Soon, there will be some other extremely convincing necessity for brands to invest in to keep them in front. It’s all bullcrap. Just focus on the humans that you want to have a relationship with. Talk to them in their language, be where they are in real life, care about what they do and give them products that they need and want, if you love your customer and keep them at the heart, they will love you back – don’t get sucked in!

     
    • John Pope

      Make that +1001

       
    • Brandon Dennis

      Great point, thanks! And you’re right-on-the-money–if you create content for people, it will pay off better than trying to game the system.

      Google would certainly like us to believe that their algorithms are foolproof and nothing can be done to improve a website’s ranking. I’m not quite there yet. I have seen first hand websites go from nearly 0 traffic to thousands of visitors each week by simply fixing a few things that Google recommends we fix.

      SEO isn’t a dark art or lost science. It isn’t hocus-pocus or black magic. It’s common sense, which as we all know, is not altogether that common. We must produce content that people enjoy, in order to gain more viewers. Google, then, has developed automated ways to detect how much a person enjoys the content–call it back-links, bounce rate, time-on-site, social signals, whatever–the point of all of this is to discover if real humans are consuming and sharing content. If we believe that Google is good at discovering this, then true SEO is simply 1) Making content better, so people share it more, and 2) Making it easier for Google to consume and judge your content, by fixing common technical errors.

       
    • Jeremy

      Spot on John!
      ” Just focus on the humans that you want to have a relationship with” – this is THE SEO message I have been preaching for years… Maybe one day someone will listen!

       
  8. eac craig

    Thanks for sharing – especially appreciate the Take Home Points. 2 myths that my clients seem unable to shake loose are:
    -Key words in Meta Tags automatically result in top rankings
    -An individual hotel should research and use the most popular key search terms (and compete with Booking.com, TripAdvisor??)

    We continuously share holistic ‘visibility recipe’ approach with clients, but it is an uphill battle displacing the piecemeal myths.

     
  9. Yann Fruchart

    How about the myth that placing links and widgets of others on your website highly increases your position in Google? Popular one with TripAdvisor sales people…..

     
 
 

Newsletter Subscription

Please subscribe now to Tnooz’s FREE daily newsletter.

This lively package of news and information from Tnooz’s web site provides a convenient digest of what’s happening in technology that drives the global travel, tourism and hospitality market.

  • Cancel