The Power of Facebook as a Search Engine
When consulting with hoteliers, we are often asked how to help a hotel get listed higher in Google search results. For a long time, online hotel marketing was all about SEO. While Google search engine results are important, there are other search engines you may not have thought about: social media search.
We’re in an era where people want to learn as much as they can about where they’re going before they go. Some people plan every detail of their trip weeks, months, or years in advance. Others are business travelers finalizing travel plans in the same week of their trip. Even when a last-minute booking decision is being made using a Hotel Coupon, travelers will look up hotels on their phone to check reviews and try to find photos on social media accounts.
Facebook provides robust search capabilities that allow users to find out anything that has been posted by or about a business. Everyone has Googled their business name to see how it appears and what is being said. Have you searched for your hotel on social media?
Even if you don’t want to manage a Facebook business page, there is a decent chance that a page already exists. When someone “checks in” on their Facebook status update, anything they said or posted will be connected to an unofficial page. Many unofficial Facebook business pages include reviews, photos, and conversations in the comments.
By claiming this page, you would be able to control what is publicly posted, respond to negative reviews, and update the contact information. Since the About section is either automatically generated or based on suggestions, the website will link to the brand home page and not the individual hotel page. Plus, if the address or phone number is incorrect, you could be missing out on calls and walk-ins.
Aside from helping your hotel get found by people who already know about your property, claiming your social media profiles can help reach the networks of people who have visited. More and more people are using the search engines in social media instead of turning to Google and Bing. When completing a search, Facebook will return relevant results, followed by a Posts from Friends section.
As you increase your following on Facebook and encourage your current guests to post about your hotel, you’ll organically grow your audience and reach more travelers. The more travelers post about your hotel and the more updates you share on social media, the more likely your page will be to appear in search results. And, if you claim and optimize your page as recommended above, you can help control the message Facebook shares about your property.
There are three important steps to ensuring your business performs well in Facebook search results:
- Claim your Facebook page and update your property contact information and photos
- Optimize your Facebook page description with relevant keywords about your property and location
- Post updates to your Facebook page regularly to increase the likelihood of positive messages about your hotel in the search results
Our social media solution for hotels can accomplish each of these three steps while also helping you build your audience. Don’t miss the opportunity to be found by travelers on social media search engines.