If you’re new to the world of ecommerce, after creating your travel website, your idea of marketing may start and end with creating an Instagram account. While it’s great to be active on social media, your real goal should be understanding how to market a tour and travel company to its fullest potential and drive traffic to your website.
You don’t have to be a marketing pro to create an engaged audience and a thriving business. If you want to know how to increase travel business coming through your website, all you have to do is implement the following five steps:
- Brand your business
- Incorporate video
- Start email marketing with a newsletter
- Create a blog
- Use analytics to your advantage
As you build your business through these steps, you’ll find ways to grow your existing user base, as well as expand your audience. So, let’s get trekking.
1. Brand your business
When you create your travel website, use a fun, easy-to-remember name (and matching domain name). Then, create an attractive logo and use it across all of your online marketing channels. It’s important to have visual consistency so that users recognize your brand whether you’re showing up in their inbox or on their Facebook feed, and a logo does just that.
You don’t have to be a graphic designer to create a great-looking logo for your travel website.
Constant Contact’s A.I.-driven logo maker makes it easy to create and customize a logo. Just follow these simple steps:
- Enter your business name.
- Do you have a slogan, tagline, or information like “est. 2001” that might look great on your logo? Go ahead and enter that, too.
- Start viewing the dozens of designs that are automatically generated. Keep in mind, it’s simple to change the colors, font, and symbols on these logos.
- Not seeing anything you like yet? Keep clicking “more.”
- Once you see a design that reflects your travel ethos, start playing with fonts, symbols, and colors. Adjust the size of individual elements to create the perfect design.
Congratulations! You now have a high-definition logo. Go ahead and use it on your website. In addition, make sure to change your profile image on your other promotional channels:
- In the header of your newsletter
Don’t use all of those sites? No worries. We’ll walk you through some of the most important marketing channels to include in your travel website in the next sections.
2. Incorporate video
As an experienced traveler, you surely have a stockpile of videos from your travels, whether it’s a clip of a wine tasting tour you led in Lyon or a first-person perspective from your favorite skydiving location. Video is a great way to grab visitors’ attention instantly.
With Constant Contact, it’s easy to embed video from YouTube, Vimeo, or Facebook video directly into your website. Depending on the site template you chose, your page may already have a video section. If it doesn’t, take these simple steps
- Hit the “+” button to add a page to your website
- Scroll through the lefthand “categories” menu and select “Video”
- Adjust how your video appears (size, etc.)
- In your site preview, click the gear icon
- Enter your video’s external URL
- Choose to automatically play or loop the video
How video helps your social media strategy
Putting your video on your website isn’t just about adding an engaging multimedia element: it can also help your video gain more views on its native platform (Facebook, YouTube, etc.). How?
- Facebook and YouTube’s algorithm tends to promote content that users already find engaging.
- When users stream video directly from your website, it counts towards your overall view numbers.
- If your visitors are logged in to their social media accounts when they visit your website, you may be able to connect with them on those platforms as well.
- As your view count grows, your video may show up more readily on its native platform, introducing new viewers to your content and hopefully directing them back to your website.
Not into directing your own videos? There’s plenty you can do by sticking to the written word.
3. Start email marketing with a newsletter
As a travel website, success is all about connecting with other wanderlusters and explorers to grow your business and your brand. Most users won’t regularly check your website to learn about updates, so you have to take matters into your own hands.
You may think that Instagram and Facebook are the best way to connect with your customers, but if you’re posting about important new offers and promotions, you don’t want to take your chances on the algorithms that determine news feed visibility. With email marketing, you can target your customers, making it more effective, and efficient, than social media alone.
Whether or not you’ve built your website with Constant Contact’s website builder, be sure to use our tools to set up your newsletter email list, then start populating your contacts list with addresses:
- Manually add a list of contacts from another source to your new newsletter
- Enter friends and family
- Encourage new users to subscribe with a pop-up or “subscribe” button on your home page
Once your newsletter is up and running, you’re ready to start sending emails.
Tips for email marketing
Are you dipping your toe into email marketing for the first time? Don’t worry — the water’s fine! There are a few basic tips for email marketing:
- Use Constant Contact’s email templates to create an attractive, streamlined email that looks great on mobile phones and on the web.
- Don’t forget to include your new logo at the top of the email!
- Make sure your email subject line makes the reader want to open your email. Instead of “Welcome to our newsletter,” try, “Imagining your next vacation?”
- Avoid including too many images, as these may not load immediately.
- Make it easy for users to unsubscribe. They’re more likely to come back if you don’t spam them for weeks on end!
- How long should your email be? It depends on the outcome you want.
Kinds of emails
What outcome do you want? Well, different marketing emails have different purposes. Consider the following three kinds of emails:
- Promotional emails are meant to drive clicks and sales. These could include special offers, location spotlights, or updates to your tour schedule. Keep these emails short and sweet, and don’t send them more often than weekly.
- Informational emails could include answers to FAQs, excerpts of your blog posts, link roundups, or interviews with other travel experts. While these also serve a promotional purpose, they don’t market a specific product, but instead, keep you on the reader’s radar.
- Follow up emails are sent to customers after they take a specific action (putting an item in their cart, making a purchase, clicking a link, etc.).
Don’t forget the 80/20 rule. 80% of your online marketing efforts should be to educate or entertain your customers and only 20% should be strictly promotional.
Once you’ve got the knack of email marketing, you might realize that you’re writing informational emails that connect customers to your expertise. If that’s the case, go ahead and take the next step to stretch those writing skills.
4. Create a blog
Creating a blog is a great way to connect with other travelers and share your adventures. Constant Contact’s website builder makes it easy to create a blog right alongside your website. From your page portal, click “Blog” in the left-hand navigation menu. From there, instantly create your blog. It will show up on your webpage, in your navigation, and you’ll have access to Constant Contact’s blog writing and editing tools.
Tips for blogging
If you’re not sure what to write, consider by answering some basic questions:
- Who is your target audience? Are they experienced backpackers, first-time travelers, travelers on a budget, globe trotters, wine enthusiasts…?
- What do you want to communicate? Is your goal to share your favorite spots and sites? To write detailed diaries about travel experiences? Or to round up links of the best camping gear?
- What makes your voice unique? Is it your sense of humor, or your background in botany?
From there, consider creating a series of posts that relate to your strengths. This could include:
- Top 5 or Top 10 lists for different cities and destinations
- Diary-like entries about lessons learned while traveling
- Photo-focused blogs of stunning architecture from your recent travels
- Interviews or profiles of locals in the area you guide tours in
Or, of course, anything else you like! Your blog is all about expressing your creativity and your unique voice.
Optimizing your blog posts
While blogging is about creativity, it’s also an important way to make sure your website shows up in search results. In our blogging tool, you’ll notice a few boxes to fill in for each post. As you get started posting, be sure to fill out the following parts:
- Title – as with email, create a title that makes your reader want to click and read more.
- Introduction – Write a one-sentence introduction that sums up what this post offers.
- Post – Let the creative juices flow.
- Categories – As you develop a library of posts, it can be difficult for readers to find the ones they’re looking for on topics like “vegan restaurants” or “Paris recommendations” without a clear list of tags. As soon as you start writing, start tagging.
Once you’ve written the post, be sure to check your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) stats. SEO is a marketing term for the process of making sure your posts show up in search engine results. Constant Contact makes it easy to do SEO yourself by filling out the following parts:
- SEO title – If the real title of your post is mysterious or obscure, create a version that could actually show up in search results (instead of “A Moonlight Night in the Eternal City,” try “Kyoto Top Nightlife”).
- SEO description – You know how search results appear: page titles, followed by brief descriptions. Those are SEO descriptions! Take control of your own here.
- SEO slug – A slug is the last segment of your blog post’s web address. So for example, in your website URL, the slug is: www.YourWebsiteName.com/blog/slug. Your slug can affect search visibility, so use keywords that users might search here, too.
Want some more information on starting a travel blog? Learn how to start a travel blog here.
5. Use analytics to your advantage
With your Constant Contact website, it’s easy to keep track of how visitors are using and interacting with your website and newsletter. Use our analytic tools to keep track of the following:
- The search terms visitors are using to find your page
- Your most popular pages and blog posts
- Which contacts are opening your email newsletter — and which aren’t
- Which products or tours are the most popular in your online store
Once you know what your customers (and potential customers) are connecting with, it’s easy to make adjustments to create more engaging content. Build popular search terms into more blog posts, and expand to pages and series that are already popular with your contacts. This might help you change and shift the focus of your travel offerings over time.
Constant Contact for one-stop marketing
Constant Contact’s A.I.-driven website builder makes a travel website easy to create, and now that you know how to develop a travel business through it, you’re only moments away from your dream platform. To help get you there, our A.I. technology helps you to create a logo as unique as your adventures. Then add video, a blog, and a newsletter to engage with your users on every level. Soon enough, you’ll have everything you need.
You’ve immersed yourself in foreign cultures before — and learning to market is a lot easier than learning another language. All you have to do is:
- Create a clear visual identity
- Find ways to connect with your audience via video, blog post, and newsletter
- Start keeping track of what works
While you’re off having adventures, your site will start to show up in search engines and collect email addresses for your subscriber list. With Constant Contact’s user-friendly tools, cross “marketing” off your bucket list and move on to planning your next trip.