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Last year, based on hearing from so many DMOs that organic search traffic to their websites was struggling year over year, Miles conducted a review of 26 destinations’ website traffic data. Though a limited sample size, the results indicated that there has been a downward trend in growth of organic website traffic since 2014.
Since then, we continue to hear a mix of success stories and concerns surrounding organic search traffic. Since we love a good mystery, we expanded last year’s review to include 36 destinations and added full data from 2016 and the first six months of 2017.
While I wish that the results provided an “ah-ha” moment to share with you – a clear trend or a solid answer – the data came out like this...
For years, Apple users have been asking Siri to answer all sorts of questions, some not quite as innocent as the ones above. And for years, Siri has been delivering clever answers – but she’s also been learning.
Machine learning is a part of artificial intelligence (AI), and it’s how technologies like Siri, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Microsoft’s Cortana are getting better and better at providing quality answers. Voice assistants don’t work alone, though; it’s up to us to make sure our sites are giving them the content to respond to voice searches.
For the most part, voice searches return similar – if not identical – results as typed queries. Users are still taken to a search engine results page, with a couple of possible exceptions. (As an example, if someone asks for directions on a mobile device, he may be taken to the device’s mapping app instead.)
Strong year-over-year (YOY) organic search traffic growth is expected in an industry as content rich as destination marketing. However, with growing frequency we’ve heard destinations voice concerns that organic traffic to their sites has been flat, or even down, in recent months.
Of course, we’ve seen the typical lineup of culprits for such trends such as site update issues, mobile friendliness and aggressive paid search budgets; but just as often we’ve seen no noticeable change in rank or search volume to account for traffic flux.
In SEO, typically there are a number of small factors that add up to a big search traffic difference, rather than a single, clear issue. Such is likely the case behind this downward trend in organic traffic growth. While there were a number of major algorithm...
Google recently completed the full rollout of a new search engine results page (SERP) layout for desktop. This update eliminated text ads in the right sidebar of desktop search results; instead, as many as four text ads will display above the organic listings (depending on the popularity of the query), and three text ads will show at the bottom of the page. This means that the total number of text ads that can appear on a SERP will shrink from as many as 11 to a maximum of seven.
But don’t panic:
• From a paid search perspective, we don’t feel there is reason for concern for our clients, particularly those whose campaigns...
If your business were retail, you wouldn’t dream of advertising a Grand Opening before you had inventory on the shelves. Before you open your doors, you would identify the products your customers need and want and you would stock your shelves in anticipation of their arrival.
In the travel industry, your website is your retail store. Do you have content on the shelves? Are you stocked with the information necessary to make a sale? Can potential customers browse your storefront and find what they are looking for? Or are you, like many others, sending customers to the store without giving them something to buy?
Without content, your store is empty. True, PPC or paid search will bring traffic, which is great—but content is what drives the sale. Content allows you to align with your customer’s needs (i.e. a beachfront hotel in Florida with family suites)...