How to Do SEO for Travel Website- Step by Step Guide

Are you looking for ways to increase bookings and make more sales on your travel website? Are you willing to outperform your competitors and grow your travel business? 

If yes, the answer to these questions is SEO (Search Engine Optimization). 

About 91% of travelers use search engines (81% prefer Google) to plan their trips and adventures. Hence, you should strictly optimize your website for search engines to drive organic traffic to your travel website. 

Now you may wonder: How to do it?

By creating a travel website and writing content, you have already started the optimization process. However, you should also be accustomed to more technical parts of SEO. 

In this article on how to do SEO for a travel website, we will guide you through every step of on-page and off-page optimization. These techniques include local SEO, technical SEO, link building, blogging, and much more. 

We will take a glance at the importance of SEO for travel websites and some common avoidable mistakes of travel SEO. Besides, we’ve also included the detailed FAQs section to help you with your further queries.

Why do Travel Businesses Need SEO?

Travel SEO is crucial for travel websites as it ensures that your website is easily found on search engine results. At the same time, SEO practices play an essential role in improving the user experience and website usability. 

Here are the main importance of SEO for travel websites:

  • It helps you generate more leads from search engines.
  • SEO guarantees a constant flow of targeted traffic on your website which can easily transform your travel business and generate more opportunities for growth. 
  • SEO is a more cost-effective method as you are likely to achieve good rankings as your targeted traffic will flow 24/7 with the optimization techniques. 
  • SEO helps you to create business strategies of your own that help you outrank your competitors in the travel market. 
  • It conveys a perception to people to trust your travel business when they search for a particular thing related to travel. 

Step-By-Step Guide to do SEO for Travel Website

Now that you’re familiar with the significance of SEO for a travel website, it is now time to explore the steps of implementing it on your own website. Here are the main steps to do it:

Step 1: Local SEO

The first step to do SEO for your travel website is to focus on local SEO. Local SEO is basically a method of optimizing your website so that it appears when people look for your location. In simpler words, it is the way used by search engines to display the most relevant results based on the location data.

Local SEO

If you analyze the several travel-related starches on Google, you can see different patterns. These patterns include PPC Ads on the top, Local SEO (Google Map) results, organic results, and a few more PPC ads below. 

To make sure your travel business gets listed in the local SEO results, you first need to create an account on Google Business Profile (previously known as Google My Business) and verify your business address.

Besides Google Business Profile, there are other local directories like Yelp, Yellow Pages, Mapquest and so on, where you can list your business online. You simply need to add your business’s name, address, and phone number. This process is known as NAP listing.

Nap Listings help search engines verify your business’s existence, legitimacy, and trustworthiness. If the exact details appear across many relevant and trusted websites, then Google likely has increased confidence that your business exists, is operational, and what you say about it is true.

Step 2: Homepage SEO

It is necessary to optimize your homepage whether you run a travel website or any other site. Your travel website should include these things on the homepage for proper optimization:

  • Your most popular travel packages
  • Descriptive and alluring photos and videos of different travel destinations
  • Your special offers and discounts
  • The most popular content from your blog archive
  • A few lines regarding your business, how you operate, and what makes your business stand out among the rest
  • A simple and easy way for your customers to search for travel services as per their preference
  • Reviews of your satisfied customers

Your website’s homepage should offer several signals to Google and other search engines about the nature of the business and the areas of your operation. For instance, if your website showcases different holiday villas in Bali, an example of a good SEO homepage title would be ‘Exclusive Holiday Villas in Bali.’

The homepage description is an important factor as it can appear on Google results when your users search for your travel website domain. You need to add a catchy and SEO-friendly title and description to optimize it for search engines.

Apart from the title and description, you should make sure that you have schema information on your page with your address and contact details.

Step 3: SEO for Categories

To make sure your travel website follows a good structure, you should ensure that it has a dedicated landing page for each city or state where the packages are located.

If your travel website is built using WordPress, your city/state or specific area pages will probably be categorized. You should make sure that these destination pages are optimized for search engines.

It means that these pages should have their own unique titles, unique content, proper H1 tags and should be included in the sitemap submitted to Google. Similarly, you should pay attention to the page URL. The URL needs to include the destination name for maximum optimization.

Step 4: SEO for Product Pages

After you optimize your categories, you need to optimize the product pages of your website. The main motive of this page is to provide your customers details regarding your particular travel service and make them complete the booking process. 

You need to design your property pages in such a way that it includes:

  • Detailed descriptions of your travel packages
  • Rich images gallery with tempting photos of different locations
  • A map showing the location of the destination
  • Facilities and services offered at various destinations
  • Calendar showing rates and availability
  • Reviews from users
  • Contact details
  • Live chat
  • Call to action buttons

For a good SEO practice, you need to include these things on your property pages:

#Call-to-action (CTA) button:

Example of CTA button

The call-to-action is the action you want your users to make on your landing page. You can present this in the form of text with a button. You can place this button just below your specific travel package as this is the final action a user will make. 

For instance, you can create a CTA like Book Now after you include a certain travel package with all the details.

#Breadcrumbs:

Breadcrumb example

Breadcrumbs are basically links that allow your users to track where they exactly are on your website. You usually find them at the top of a website or just below the navigation bar.

For instance, the breadcrumb of a property page located in Phangan can be: Home >> Thailand >> Phangan >> Villas with Private Pool in Phangan.

#Unique Titles:

Although there may be a number of similar properties on your travel website, you need to craft a unique and informative title for each property. While creating the title of your property, you should think about the features that make the particular property different from the rest. 

Instead of mentioning the general location in the title, try to be more specific. 

For instance, Villa in Phangan can be made unique and more specific like a Large Villa in Phangan with a Private Pool

#Content of the Page:

Similar to the title, the content of your property page needs to be unique. You should avoid content duplication as it can have a negative impact on your website. For proper optimization purposes and to provide a better user experience, you need to differentiate your content as much as you can.

You should describe the property in the form of a story rather than just presenting the facts.

#User Reviews and Ratings:

One main factor influencing the travel website’s bookings is user reviews and ratings. Good reviews and ratings make a lot of difference to drive more customers to your travel website. 

A study proves that 90 percent of customers are influenced by reviews when buying a product or service. Similarly, 87 percent of customers won’t consider a business with a low rating on review sites. 

If you include some decent reviews from your customers regarding travel services, it immediately attracts people looking for the best place to book their next trip.

Wherever you create a travel service, make sure to decorate your travel packages with proper tour descriptions and travel itineraries. Learn how to write proper tour descriptions and travel itineraries for your travel packages. 

Step 5: Blogging

Content is the king.

Blogging is always the starting of any SEO strategy. The best way to drive traffic to your website and increase your leads, you need to focus on creating blog posts.

Not only Blogging helps in increasing traffic and leads, but it also has the potential to open so many doors.

Here are some examples that you can start your blog post on your website:

  • Travel and trek tips
  • Things you can do in a specific destination
  • Places which you can visit while enjoying holidays in a specific area
  • Special guides for family members
  • Events worth visiting on travel destinations
  • Local guides about where to eat and much more

Creating content sounds easy. However, there are many dynamics that you need to follow to optimize your content for search engines. You need to follow a few SEO checklists to create well-optimized blogs. These include:

#Keyword Research

Before planning your content, you need to do thorough keyword research. Keyword research lays a foundation for your website optimization as it helps boost your visibility on search engines. Moreover, keyword research impacts the ranking of your entire website when it comes to search engine result pages. 

You can either use a paid tool like Ahrefs or a free tool like  Google Keyword Planner to do complete keyword research. By targeting the right keywords, you can aid Google in understanding what your content is about. This increases the chance of your blog post reserving the top spot on the search engine results.

#Proper Use of Subheadings

Another way to optimize your content is to make use of headings and subheadings properly. By default, your post title uses the H1 tag. You can then use the H2, H3, H4, and even H5 tags in proper order. 

To make your subheadings more convincing, it is recommended to use your primary and semantic keywords in them.

#Meta Description

A meta description is a section that provides both search engines and users with what your content is all about. It is basically a short preview of your blog post. The ideal meta description should not exceed 156 characters, and it should include your main keywords. 

#Use Images & Visual Content

Using images and visual content on your website helps to make it more engaging. However, while using images and videos on your website, make sure to optimize them beforehand. Adding an image alt text and compressing the size of your image are some of the best ways of optimization. 

#Add Internal Links

Internal linking helps to increase the user’s engagement on your website. Whenever you create a new travel post, you should look for the relevant posts which you can link to your new post. Wherever it makes sense, include those links for better optimization.

The WordPress SEO plugin like Rank Math helps you in internal linking as well.

#Create E-A-T Content

If you want to rank your travel website well on Google and other search engines, you should focus on creating content that meets the important ranking factor of Google’s algorithm, i.e., E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness).

Whenever you craft content, you should possess exceptional knowledge or skill in the particular subject matter. In order to rank your pages on Google, you should create content that offers your knowledge in a way your target audiences understand and comprehend.

Likewise, you should increase the authoritativeness of your website. The authoritativeness or reputation of your site increases when relevant users consider your content to be the best source of information on a particular topic. 

Besides, you should develop trustworthiness among your visitors whenever you write content. The content you create should be reliable and credible. Likewise, you should also focus on the reliability of your website and you as a content creator.  

Similarly, you can follow the exact process as mentioned above while optimizing for your product/package pages, Homepage and other important money-making pages.

Step 6: Schema Markup

Schema markup is simply a code that you place on your website to help the search engines yield more informative results for users. It is one of the coolest features that you can use to optimize your pages and boost your click-through rate. 

You should use schema markup on your travel website to include reviews about particular treks and destinations. These reviews appear in the SERP result and hence it can help you outrank your competitors. Moreover, it is the best way to increase traffic on your site. 

Schema Markup

You have a choice to make the schema look as authoritative as possible. So, how can you do this?

Well, you can follow the following steps to add schema markup to your travel website:

  • Redirect to Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper.
  • Select the sort of data that you plan to markup.
  • Paste the URL of the page or content you want to markup.
  • Select and highlight the type of elements to be marked up.
  • Keep on adding markup items.
  • Create the HTML.
  • Use the Structured Data Testing Tool to check what your page will look like after adding schema markup.
  • Add the generated schema markup to your website. 

Step 7: Technical SEO

Site Audit - technical SEO

If Content is king in the SEO world, then Technical SEO is the queen. If you’re serious about scaling your travel website, technical SEO practices are an absolute must. The most critical elements of technical SEO are crawling, indexing, rendering, website architecture, mobile-friendliness, and so on.

In order to manage the technical part of your website optimization, you should connect your website to these two analytics tools:

Google Analytics gives a complete insight into how your overall website is performing. It offers main details like the number of visitors every day, unique visitors, and returning visitors.

Likewise, Google Search Console is a tool from Google that plays a key role in indexing your website so that it appears on search engines. This tool provides you with an overview of your website’s health in terms of SEO. 

Moreover, you should always keep the responsiveness of your travel website in mind. Whenever you create a travel website, focus on mobile-first indexing. 

Your travel website should run smoothly on every device and screen size, including smartphones, tablets, desktops, and laptops. To make sure of this technical factor, you should design a website using responsive and mobile-friendly travel WordPress themes.

Next up, your website’s overall architecture is another key thing to consider on the technical SEO part. 

Design your travel website in a way that is easy for search engines to navigate and crawl for better visibility. For instance, you need to present your travel business with separate categories/branches like services, blogs, galleries, about, contact, and so on. 

Besides, each category/branch on the website should be an internal link to let search engines and visitors easily navigate between pages.

Apart from that, make sure to check for the broken links on your website as these may degrade the user experience of your website and also affect your SEO rankings directly. You can either remove those links or replace them with live links. Here’s a complete guide on how to find and fix broken links in WordPress?

Last but not least, you should focus on-site auditing on a regular, weekly, or monthly basis. You can use premium tools like Ahrefs where you can scan your website and find out technical and SEO-related mistakes. 

There are some added SEO checklists for a travel website that you should look at. 

Step 8: Web Core Vitals

web core vitals

Web Core Vitals are three metrics included in Google’s new algorithm that measure the user experience of interacting with a page. These page experience signals check how quickly a page is visible, how quickly a browser loading a webpage can respond to the user action, and the visual stability of the elements on the page.

Web Core Vitals not just improve your organic rankings, but also offer your audience a superior experience. This results in more engaged customers and higher conversion rates on your travel website.

You can use different tools like Google Search Console, PageSpeed Insights, and GTmetrix to check whether your travel website is core web vital optimized or not. If not, make sure to do this to improve your website’s search engine rankings. 

Step 9: Link Building

You shouldn’t forget about link building when it comes to optimizing your travel website for search engines. It is by far the most effective off-page SEO practice that lets you attain high rankings on search engine result pages.

Link building can be a bit more tricky at times, and you should be careful not to go the easy way and get faulty links from low-quality websites. Else, you will risk damaging your website’s reputation in the eyes of Google. This can hamper your business website in the long term.  

Whenever you look for link building, you need to focus on inbound links. Inbound links from high-authority websites help you scale your travel website’s rankings on search engines. You need to make sure that the backlinks you get are from sites relevant to your industry. 

For instance, there are many popular travel websites like TripAdvisor, Lonely Planet, Yahoo Travel, The Guardian Travel, and so on, where you can get valuable links for your website. 

When talking about link building, you should always emphasize quality links over quantity links. Just a single link from a high-quality source can provide as much value as a hundred links from other unauthorized sources. 

link building

When you do link building, you should know about two types of links: no-follow and do-follow. Search engines consider do-follow links more valuable as they pass the link juice. However, if you can get no-follow links from high-authority sources, it can be of high value as well. 

The whole idea about link building is that if you generate a link from a website trusted by Google, you are more likely to scale your travel website.

Here are some of the ways to master this off-page SEO technique to grow your travel website:

  • Whenever you have good travel offers and deals, focus on press releases so that travel industry bloggers and influencers are more likely to recommend your business to a mass audience. As long as you can maintain your business reputation, your travel website might even get listed with the biggest travel portals.
  • You can also mention links from travel review websites and portals. It is even beneficial to make connections with fellow travel bloggers on social media networks and offer them incentives or other benefits to visiting your website. 
  • After you make enough connections, try to establish a conversation with them and then ask them to visit your website. Similarly, you can send exclusive offers to their readers. 

You shouldn’t forget about internal linking when you talk about link building. Although internal linking is part of on-page SEO, it should never be left out.

Internal links can help your travel website in many ways. Google uses internal links to find more pages from your website. Besides, your users can click on internal links to discover more about a topic or even visit another relevant page from your website.

The best practice to add internal links on your website is to use keywords as the link anchor text. It helps Google understand what the linking page is all about.

Step 10: Social SEO

Social media is the key element that helps you boost your business in a number of ways. As a travel website owner, you need to focus on a solid social media presence. Your target audience will easily find your business if you can promote your website and optimize it through different social networks.

A travel website needs to have an active social media platform because:

  • A considerable number of people spend the majority of their time on social media networks regularly.
  • You can easily connect with other bloggers in your industry.
  • People may want to visit your social media pages to read reviews from your existing clients before booking a service from you.

You can master social SEO by creating an official page of your travel website on social channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to share your travel services. If you share pictures and travel posts regularly, you can attract more customers to your business.

Moreover, you can easily interact with your audience and engage them on your posts via comments and likes. Listening to the feedback from your users can help you improve your trips and packages that boost your overall travel business. 

In the meantime, it is fruitful to join a few travel-related groups on Facebook and promote your business to drive more website traffic. You can also look for travel-related chats on Twitter and use their popular hashtags while sharing your content on Twitter.

Step 11: Voice Search

Voice search has come a long way in the search industry. 

It is another important factor you should consider while planning SEO for your travel website. It allows your travel audience to start a search while they are doing their daily work like cooking, cleaning, etc. It ensures no interruption on any of their activities and allows them to multitask.

You can follow some key strategies to optimize your travel website for voice search. These include:

  • Voice-based keywords research
  • Website structure and content strategy implementation
  • Structured data optimization
  • Mobile-friendly content optimization
  • Amazon Alexa and Google Home friendly content optimization

A large number of people use their voice assistant to search for what they are looking than physically typing their queries. As a result, voice search is a win-win solution for your online travel business.

Some Common Mistakes of Travel SEO

SEO needs patience and attention to detail. Unfortunately, not all travel websites follow the above steps correctly. They often make some mistakes that may cost them their website traffic and search engine rankings. Here are the four most common travel SEO mistakes:

1. Using a platform that is not SEO friendly:

While most booking platforms provide some excellent features for travel agents, they are often terrible when it comes to SEO. Whenever you choose a theme or a platform for your travel business, you should go for the one with top-notch SEO features. Only then should you shift your focus on the features they offer for booking services and so forth. 

Ultimately, you want a travel website that generates lots of bookings through SEO. Simply having a flawless backend system is not enough. Your website should also prioritize achieving higher ranks for your business keywords.

2. Issue of duplicate content:

Everything you publish on your dedicated website pages needs to be completely original. It should be unique and should provide maximum value to your users. Copying content from already published articles is considered a bad practice in terms of SEO.

3. Lack of social media presence:

A proper social media presence is a must if you want to scale your overall travel business. Though social media marketing won’t generate bookings directly, it is an absolute must to establish a good reputation for your brand. Having a solid social media presence encourages more people to visit your website to seek travel services from you.

4. No connection with customers:

If you ignore your users’ comments and don’t respond to their social media messages, you are likely to lose potential clients. To make sure that your users are fully engaged on your website, you should build a strong connection with them.

Important Tips for Travel SEO

Here are the main points that you should consider regarding travel SEO:

  • You should optimize your travel website for local SEO and Google Maps. If you do this process correctly, Google is most likely to show your business on Google Map as well as on top of the organic results. 
  • Make sure to optimize your homepage for keywords related to your target locations.
  • Make sure to optimize your destination pages by giving attention to the page titles, content, and descriptions. 
  • Make the content of your service pages unique and compelling. 
  • Try to make a strong social media presence and have an active profile in all major social networks. 
  • Try to connect with travel bloggers and travel journalists through personal connections or press releases. 
  • Start your content marketing strategy and promote your travel content. 
  • Make sure your website is mobile-friendly and fully responsive across all major devices and screen types.
  • Make sure your website is secured, i.e., it should begin with https.
  • When choosing a platform for your travel business, make sure it is SEO-friendly.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How to set up SEO for my travel website?

You should plan your website’s SEO before creating it. Here are the main steps that you should take into consideration for your travel website SEO:

  • Choose the domain name of your website carefully
  • Select the reputable and proper web hosting
  • Perform a strategic keyword research
  • Plan out your website’s architecture
  • Prioritize the intuitive navigation in your design
  • Create a standard and SEO-friendly URL structure 
  • Design your website keeping site speed in mind
  • Use a responsive and mobile-friendly design
  • Focus on indexable content
  • Target main keywords for each page
  • Optimize title tags, images, headings, and text on every page
  • Create unique meta descriptions
  • Focus on internal linking
  • Submit your sitemap to Google

What content can you post on your travel website?

Just because you run a travel website to sell different travel services doesn’t necessarily mean that you should only prioritize adding travel packages on your website. You can make it more interactive and engaging by adding different types of content. This can be extremely helpful when it comes to the website optimization process. 

For instance, you can include blog posts highlighting different travel tips, activities that you can do in a particular destination, and places to visit while on vacation in a particular area. Make sure you provide detailed information on the topic or keywords that you pick.

Our Verdict:

There you go! These are some of the guidelines on how to do SEO for travel websites. If you nail these optimization techniques properly, you can indeed scale your travel website and your overall travel business. 

The main thing you should note here is that both on-page and off-page optimization techniques are important for the growth of a website. So, besides focusing on creating quality content for your travel website, you should also break some sweat on link building and content promotion. 

We hope you find these SEO tips helpful. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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