Earlier in April, EAN’s SEO Director Martin McDonald laid out what Google’s latest updates mean for affiliates. His advice was to “maximise both the quality and quantity of unique content being offered on your site. It’s important already, but will only get more so in future.”
So where do you start with content?
Think of EAN’s content as a rock-solid, rich catalogue of great hotel inventory upon which you can create your own unique content. It’s not enough on its own to be considered ‘content rich’ by Google, but it does form a flexible set of building blocks that you can build into a personalized customer experience.
So, if you’re planning your own content strategy, be sure that you’re making the most of hotel content supplied by EAN. These are some new features and details you might want to consider using.
Rooms, rooms, rooms
What’s the difference between a junior suite and a king suite, and is it worth the difference in price? This is the kind of question customers ask themselves when choosing a room type, and if they can’t see a notable difference, why would they choose the more expensive option?
If you’re looking to upsell rooms to customers, show them what they’re getting for their money. We have over 270,000 room type images available in the RoomTypeList file in our database files on Dev Hub. It’s a key driver for conversion, and for increasing the average value of a sale. If you’re not already using this content, make it a priority for 2012.
Make it personal
What’s useful to your customers when they travel? Free wifi and a business centre, or maybe babysitting services and a pool?
Studying your booking stats will show you who your customers are, and give you some idea of what they value. For example, if the majority of your customers book for one or two nights midweek in major airport cities, you’re catering to the business crowd. Conversely, if you’ve got a family booked in a sunny resort for a week, it’s definitely vacation time.
Whatever your customer profiles, use this info to highlight hotel features and amenities that matter to your customers. Our AttributeList file details all the possible amenities a hotel can have – use it to highlight the things your customers value so they can see (without having to filter results) whether the hotel is right for them.
If you’re going to use EAN’s hotel content, make sure what you’re displaying is accurate and up to date. In an average week, we change, add or delete 5000 images, 3000 amenities and policies, and 2000 hotel descriptions – if you’re not updating content frequently, you’re risking lower conversion and higher cancellation rates. Update at least weekly (or better, nightly) to be sure you’re getting the most from what’s on offer.
Get an upgrade!
Are you still using our standard database files? Did you know that we also offer relational database files? These newer files offer a richer, wider range of content in predefined relational tables – ideal for larger databases, or anyone integrating more than one source of inventory. Both file types are available to EAN partners, so have a look at Dev Hub and see the potential for your business.
The onus still remains on EAN partners to define and decide what kinds of original content will benefit your sites, but with EAN’s rich content supply, you’ll have plenty to work with.
Need more guidance on using EAN content, or building your own? Leave a comment below and we’ll address any questions.
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