Hotel Marketing Podcast: Episode 248 –  11 Outdated SEO Strategies That Will Kill Your Hotel’s Rankings

Good day fellow hoteliers and welcome to episode 248 of the Hotel Marketing Podcast, I’m your host Pete DiMaio of TravelBoom and today we are going to do some search optimization like it’s 2004.  There’s no SEO hat that’s too black today, so let’s dive into the show and start messin’ with some algorithms.

This is going to be a fun episode today and we couldn’t have fun without Alyssa Foriska and Jeremy Razook. 

Hotel News

Happy Anniversary to our AI-Overlords: Chat GPT turns one today:

11 Black-Hat SEO Strategies Hotels Should Avoid

  1. Exact match domains such as; Google will ignore exact match domains as of 2012 or earlier
  2. Buying links > Exchanging money or goods or services for links.
    1. Alternatively, outsourcing/hiring link building to an agency.
    2. Buy links not for the purpose of boosting SEO > links tagged with nofollow and sponsored
  3. Reciprocal linking > “Link to me and I’ll link to you”
    1. Alternatively, build organic relationships with sources across the web.
    2. Build links naturally with content
    3. Utilize guest bloggers as part of your PR campaign
  4. Keyword stuffing: filling up a page with the phrase you want to rank for > Instead, use keywords moderately and naturally within the copy.
    1. One keyword per page > evolved to one page per topic, not per keyword 
  5. Doorway Pages: Doorway pages are website pages loaded with keywords but have poor page content. These pages are designed to trick search engines into believing there is good-quality content pertaining to the keyword on the page. Doorway pages are generally accompanied by invisible text to pull in users who are searching for multiple topics within a specific industry. 
  6. Article spinning > Copying content from other websites, slightly modifying it, and republishing it on your own website.
  7. Using PBNs (Private Blog Networks). The act of having a blog/content on a site that links to other sites in a network. The only value is to increase inbound links for search ranking and it doesn’t provide relevant content for the user.
  8. Short-form content creation/quantity over quality > helpful content update
  9. Writing for bots vs. people: i.e. repeats a particular keyword over and over, awkwardly forces a keyword phrase into a sentence in a way that doesn’t make sense or incorporates unnecessary heading tags
  10. Cloaking: a technique where a website shows one version of a URL, page, or piece of content to the search engines for ranking purposes while showing another to its actual visitors.
    1. Hidden text or links; Placing it behind an image; Using a font size of 0, or white on white, etc.
    2. Adding a class name to an element on your page and setting it to “hidden” in your CSS stylesheet
    3. People typically use this technique to stuff a page with keywords and boost its rankings while hiding the content from users. 
  11. Sneaky redirects: the practice of sending users to a different page or site than the one they requested or clicked on > leading people from a high authority website to your low-quality one.

BONUS: Optimize for the best user experience

Instead… Create the best possible resource for your consumers. No tricks, no hacks, just creating the best possible experience for your potential hotel guests through a fast, mobile-friendly site designed to answer every question about your property and destination. 

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