Search Engine Optimization Secrets

    June 10, 2003

I’m sure that everyone knows that the travel sector is one of the most competitive online. There are literally thousands of sites and the search engine rankings appear to be controlled by the big corporate travel sites. So where does that leave a small travel business on the internet? Well, there are actually still many opportunities for these sites.

The main focus of travel sites always seems to be on the very popular keywords like “travel”. Getting a top 10 ranking for these very general keywords is virtually impossible. Therefore, smaller sites need to target words which give them a decent chance of success.

This requires a site to target very specific phrases. For example, here are the number of searches on Overture last month for some travel related keywords:

travel – 1481584 searches
air travel – 88876
adventure travel – 65840
travel to Japan – 31321
travel to thailand – 17540
travel to michigan – 9868

Now, this shows that getting a top 10 listing for the word “travel” would be great but it also shows that getting a top 10 listing for a very specific phrase would still be very useful. This is where your focus should be.

Focus on as many specific keywords and phrases as you can find. The more specific the better because there will be less competition for them on the search engines. There is also a good chance that your conversion rate will be higher because the people using specific phrases obviously have a very good idea of what they are looking for.

Once you have a list of specific phrases that you want to target, you need to make sure that the search engines actually list you when people do a search. Now, often travel sites will consist of lots of pictures, maybe a form to allow people to check prices and make bookings and a bit of text. Of these things, it’s only the text that will help with your rankings. So, if your site doesn’t provide much text, you need to add pages to your site to target each of your keywords. The best way to do it is to write articles. Have each one target a particular phrase.

For example, if you want to target “travel to Michigan”, write an article about travelling to Michigan. Include information on where people can stay when they get there, what they can do on their holiday, how often the airlines fly and so on.

The search engines love content so make sure that content is what you give them. The relevance of your page is determined by a number of factors but the text on the page is as important as any other when chasing rankings for very targeted phrases.

This approach does require a bit of extra work but it will definitely pay off in the long run.

You can find out more about how to Optimize your site in Rankings Revealed :

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