Travel Website Marketing: Why Traffic is NOT the answer to Increased Sales

How many of you think that if you just had better ranking or increased website traffic, you would book more trips, fill more rooms or increase arrivals?

A bet a lot of you.Travel website Marketing tips for Google

This is only partially true…but mostly an illusion that can get real expensive and fast. And even after spending a bunch of time and money trying to increase leads and sales, you may not have much to show from your big investment…

Can you relate?

Nobody knows what Google is going to do next with their search engine algorithms… That’s why I recommend you invest in proven travel website marketing that you control. It is more fun and profitable too.

Below are three tips and tools that can help you more than double your leads and sales – and without ANY increase in ranking or traffic.

Click on the audio player below to listen to this short audio tips I did for my Australian associate Manny Papadoulis host of the iTunes podcast Tourism Briefs.

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Download MP3 Travel Website Marketing Tips Here


Travel Website Marketing Tips Highlights & Case Study

1.    Sign up for a FREE Google Analytics account

  • Why measuring monthly your travel website site and visitor web use in Google Analytics is key
  • You cannot improve, what you can’t measure.


2. Measure your monthly leads, source of leads and what converted to sales.

  • Then you can easily calculate your “ Lead” & Sales conversion rate”. Plus then you’ll know where your best leads and sales are coming from.


#3   it’s all about Conversion: So how much more can you make in sales & revenues by just increasing conversion?  Here’s an example:

  • To keep it in alignment with many of your travel websites, I have used some conservative numbers based on 1000 monthly website visitors and US$500 gross income per sale.

Many of you may get about 4% of total web visitors turn into leads

Travel website marketing tips sales funnel for Tourism marketing

1000 web visitors

 x .04

40 leads from your travel website  


If you convert 20% of those 40 into sales. 

40 Leads

x .20

8 sales monthly x US$500  = $4000 or US$48,000 per year


How to Increase Sales US$60,000 Without Much Effort or Cost

Here is how small improvements in your travel website marketing lead and sales conversions, with the same amount of web traffic, radically increases sales & revenues:

So what if you increased your leads to just 6% of total web visitors?

1000 web visitors

 x .06

60 leads from your travel website


Then if you convert 30% of those 60 into sales, look what happens:

60 leads

x .30

  18 sales monthly x $500 per sale  = $9000 x 12 = $108,000

This is a $60,000 difference every year just by making small copy and layout improvements (that tap into proven “mental triggers”) on your website to increase both lead capture and sales conversions. The secret behind these “mental triggers” is called “Social Proof”.


What is Social Proof and how does it increase lead generation & sales conversion on your travel website?

One of the best ways to communicate “social proof” is with word of Mouth advertising, testimonials, awards, and reviews in tripadvisor and more. This Nielsen study proved that this is the most effective and trusted form of travel advertising. That is why you should put your focus in creating a “Travel Website That Sells before you spend a lot of effort and money on SEO.


What is a “Travel Website That Sells”?

To achieve a “Travel Website That Sells” you must tap into travel shoppers’ mental triggers. They want to know in about 7 seconds that you are:

  1. Experienced
  2. Provide quality experiences and service
  3. And safety is your #1 concern.

There are many more proven elements that go into profitable travel website marketing and a travel website that sells.  The good news is most of them are simple and easy, even if you are not Internet marketing savvy.

To learn more about how radically improve your website leads and sales conversions fast & easy using these proven “mental triggers”, check out my Tourism Marketing Success Online program.

travel website marketing courseBe sure to watch the short videos and read comments from fellow tourism professionals and what they experienced about generating more leads, sales and profits by tapping into “mental triggers* and using social proof in their travel website marketing.  (These happy customer comments are also great samples of “Social Proof”)

This top selling program will show you how you can increase sales online fast & easy… using ideas that you can implement in less than two hours, even if you have no experience in Internet marketing. It is comes with a 60 Day Risk free trial, 100% money back guarantee.


What is your experience with spending money on search engine ranking and increasing sales? Has it profitably increased your sales, bookings or arrivals?

Thanks for your comments, questions and sharing this blog post using the social media sharing buttons below

Tourism Marketing Tips for Maximum Leads, Sales and Profits in 2014 – Part II


Tony the tour operator came so close to his tourism business dream turning into a nightmare…

tourism marketing tips for tour operatorsAlthough online inquiries and sales used to be good, things dropped off… Tony was struggling and was not sure what to do. 

But using the first three tourism marketing tips in my last Travel Business Success blog post and the three travel business and marketing tips below, his travel business dreams were much more fun.

Now he knows where to focus his time and money to generate quality leads and profitable sales both on and off line.

If you are a independent tour operator, lodge, resort, travel agent, small cruise ship or destinations and you are not getting enough leads and sales from your travel marketing, you need these 6 critical tourism marketing tips to survive and thrive in 2014.

 Here’s a quick summary of the first 3 tourism marketing tip areas guaranteed to increase your sales. Access part #1 here.


1:   Marketing & Lead Generation


2:   Sales Conversion: How to Sell & Book More Trips, Rooms or Arrivals


3:   Social Media and Community Building


4:   Customer Service is Tourism

tourism marketing tips for hospitality and adventure travel business

 Having been in the adventure travel & ecotourism business industry for over 20 years, I’ve been blessed to work with some really cool trips and amazing operators and destinations. Mountain biking in Mongolia, sea kayaking on Lake Titicaca Bolivia, hanging out with Richard Branson on his private island in the Caribbean, dog sledding on ancient Eskimo trails for over 100 miles, petting a 40 ton friendly Baja whale, cage diving with Great White sharks and countless other incredible global experiences.


What do these all have in common? Customer service.

I’ve got a client who has the most amazing eco-adventure Lodge. Way off the grid, loaded with wildlife, incredible abundant oceans, great amenities and some of the best stargazing you will ever see.

The problem is that his staff is not that committed to quality customer service…

His tripadvisor reviews are often missing the mark because of fair to poor service or poor communication, not the amazing natural environment which guests love.

Granted he’s got great facilities, the food is good and there is a bunch of outdoor equipment for guests to enjoy. The problem is his staff is not trained well to teach people how to use the equipment and nobody’s willing to take a leadership role. When something is broken, nobody’s willing to step up to fix it…

This is a big challenge since the owner lives 400 miles away and seldom gets down to the eco-Lodge…

Can you relate or have you seen this in your travel businesses?

After digging into these operational and customer service gaps with me, he admits he has not done a good job at specifying in the writing the duties of each staff member. He now also recognizes that he has not actively communicated on a regular basis with his key staff.

If you don’t know how your staff is representing you and your business, you have a problem…

Great hospitality & customer service requires active leadership.

So this client has started an operational checklist for key staff positions and daily short satellite phone check-in calls with his lead guides.  Not only are things operating better, customers and staff are happier, and most importantly, so is he. Plus his tripadvisor reviews are more numerous and better!

We are in the life enhancing business. We are selling the invisible.

Constantly invest in you and your staff’s management, communication and leadership skills. I guarantee your customer service will improve, and so will your referrals, repeat business and profits.


5:  Tourism Marketing Tips for Technology 

There are three things you can count on in life; death, taxes, and change. And with technology that has never been truer.Tourism Marketing tips for Google

Technology and travel marketing go hand-in-hand. You can’t know everything about technology and the Internet.  So focus on things that will give you quality website traffic, build your social media community and keep you in touch with prospects and alumni.

Website traffic is a blessing and a challenge for all travel marketers. You’re going to get online traffic organically through your search engine ranking and many other online channels (see below), or through online advertising like Google ad words. I think a blend of both is wise, if you do it right.

The more sources of traffic that you have coming to your website, the more you are diversified and not relying just on search engines.

Did Google’s panda, Penguin, or Hummingbird updates impact your travel website?

I was and so were many others like you.  Work on developing traffic and technology in the areas below and you will have more traffic, leads and sales guaranteed.

The best sources of organic website traffic I like is a blend from:

  • Search engines: Google, Bing and Yahoo
  • Social media: Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter, Google+
  • Email: opt in list that you communicate with 1 to 2 times a month
  • Travel review sites: Tripadvisor, FlipKey (Lodging) and others
  • Publicity: Almost any online and off line articles with links to your site
  • Mobile: You have to add a mobile option to your travel website for sure or you will lose out on over 50% of traffic

 The best sources of paid advertising online traffic I like is a blend from:Facebook tourism Marketing tips

  • Google Adword: Pay per click advertising
  • Facebook: “ Native ads” which are “Promoted Posts”

There are many other paid channels of online travel advertising, but I recommend you focus on just a couple and learn how to do them right. The problem is most people do not do the paid advertising correctly and waste a lot of money and time.

For Google adwords advertising help I recommend Perry Marshall’s Definitive Guide to Adwords Advertising. If you are doing any paid advertising in Google or other pay per click channels, you need to get his guide. It will save you tons of money and time, and more importantly, provide you qualified leads that you can profitably convert into sales.

Have you noticed that Facebook is reducing how many people you reach or see your updates?  It is probably a move by them to generate more advertising revenue. Stay tuned for updates and recommendations on Facebook travel advertising.

Internet travel marketing and technology is an area I will constantly address, bring in more experts and make recommendations to advance your online travel marketing.

Because the Internet is evolving so fast, if you don’t keep up with it at some level, or have someone on your team who does, you will lose ground and go backwards….


6:   Travel Marketing and Business Education

tourism marketing tips and helpI know all these tourism marketing tips can be a little overwhelming…

Good news. You don’t have to know it all.

I recommend you look at the five tourism marketing and operation areas in this two-part article and ask yourself:

  1. What’s working?
  2. What’s not working?
  3. What is one thing you need to learn more about now?

Instead of trying to fix it all, just pick one or two areas from your list of what’s not working or what you need to learn more about, and focus on that.

If you’re not sure on how to solve something or where to find the answer, you can start here in my Travel Business Success blog by searching for a specific topic, or use the category list on the right-hand side.

There are over 150 articles, videos, case studies, podcasts and infographics on my travel, tourism and hospitality business centered website. Plus I will be adding more all the time, and responding to your questions, comments and requests.

 There’s an old saying that says; “you can’t improve what you can’t measure” which is very true.

 So as you review what’s working and what’s not, make sure you start documenting where you are now and progress over time as you apply these proven tactics.  Then you will know which areas to improve to get the biggest bang for the buck!  This is especially true with all online travel marketing.

Stay tuned for the next Tourism Marketing TV episode:

7 Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) for Profitable Online Tourism Marketing

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