Last week we examined some of the best destinations to go traveling during the winter season. Yet, how do we determine that those specific destinations are the best to go to? Thousands of computer applications have been created to help you determine this based on the random searches on the internet, blogs and consumer reviews. From Yahoo! Local Listings, Citysearch and Yelp!, these applications have become our critics in selecting where to travel, but sometimes it’s simply word of mouth that leads to the “best kept secret” travel spots.
Puerto Rico is a top destination for some, but maybe not for others.
With that said, what is it that makes us use these review sites? Why do these stand out above the rest and how do we find out about them? People may say that finding review sites comes down to a search on theGoogle search engine (after all, it is the 3rd most popular site on the planet). So how do these review sites become so popular in modern day culture? How do we determine which hotels have the best rates, and are located at the some of the best locations? When I do a search for hotels, why does Hotel.com and Expedia.com show up at the top of the search? One answer: Google Adwords.
|Located at the top and labeled in red is an example of where a Google Adwords account is placed|
What is Google Adwords? It’s another way to help your company rise to the top of Google’s search engine. Go ahead and type in travel rates and see what you get. You’ll notice that Expedia.com and Cheapflights.com are at the top of your search. But why are these two companies at the top of the list when you type something as generic as “travel rates”?
Google runs its engine on an algorithm that helps other top web sites move ahead of their competitors. Inside of the Adwords tool, you’ll open up what is also known as a “campaign.” A campaign is a tool that is designed to help select certain keywords. After this, you’ll use a tool located at the side of your window that will allow you to choose 2 or 3 other keywords associated with the campaign you’ve chosen. For example for “hotel”, you can select “travel” and “destination” as the two keywords. Choosing these keywords will also allow you to associate other keywords to them. This is where strategy is essential - picking the right keywords that you know people will click on is the key to success. After a couple of adjustments to your campaign, your Adwords account is ready to go live.
An example of Google Adwords and its mainpage layout.
From here, Adwords will key in on certain phrases people select when they perform a Google search. This is what they call “clickthrough rate.” Clickthrough rate is based on the number of clicks divided by the number of impressions and is then shown as a percentage. Your ad will be based on the number of clicks when they click on your website. Google will receive a percentage based on how many times someone clicks on your site. The trick to the keyword section is to finding those words that are more specific to your site. For example, in searching for Percipia Networks something more specific such as “Chicago hospitality telephone pbx” would yield better results than a generic phrase like “hospitality software”.
The “techy” in us finds adwords and clickthrough rates incredibly useful – how do these play out in your daily routine??