Benefits of Organic Search Engine Optimization: A High ROI Marketing Strategy

By Hillary Bressler Fractional Digital CMO, PinchHit Partners | January 27, 2012

So before I can convince anyone about SEO, I need to teach them "what is SEO and why should I do it." SEO is the science and art of attracting "free" organic traffic to your site. And this works in a way that is different than any other form of online marketing. It is a long term and high ROI marketing model. Dollar-for-dollar, search engine optimization offers the most cost-efficient website traffic-building tactic and can also deliver significant competitive advantages.

**What is SEO?**

Search engine optimization is the process of insuring your site listing appears among the top results of a search in engines such as Yahoo! or Google. The higher a website ranks in the search results, the greater the chance that the site will be visited. SEO is not to be confused with paid search, or Pay-Per-Click (PPC), where an advertiser pays when their listing in the "Sponsored Links" section of a search engine page is clicked.

A 2006 by Radar Research states that 75 percent of advertisers use organic search engine optimization (SEO) tactics, making it the most popular form of search engine marketing. Paid search came in second, with 71 percent of advertisers using this channel. Paid search comprised about 86 percent of total ad spending, while organic search accounted for a mere 12 percent of ad spending in 2006. Because of the competitiveness for some keywords, a significant number of dollars can and are being spent on paid search while SEO delivers results for significantly less.

**What are your SEO options?**

If your hotel is considering SEO as part of your Internet marketing arsenal, you'll find a dizzying array of options from vendors: phone consultations; website audits; on-going SEO consultation; and SEO consulting with implementation. You'll likely also consider undertaking SEO in-house versus outsourced professional services.

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Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.