With more people than ever online, the vast majority of accommodation bookings made via the internet and guests currently limited to virtual browsing, now is the perfect time for serviced apartment and co-living companies to get their virtual house in order. From updating website content to driving SEO, here are some simple tips that innovative living companies can use to boost their digital reach.
Update your website
Your website is the foundation of your online strategy. Like your portfolio of apartments, your website should be easy to find, welcoming, helpful and make visitors want to stay. As such, operators should focus on:
- Key details - What would your perfect guest want to know if searching for your service? Think brand name, contact details and portfolio locations. Minimum stays, price ranges and pet enquiries. Cancellations policies, Covid security and long-stay discounts. Make it as easy as possible for guests to find crucial information.
- Recent photos, videos and content - Enticing HD photos, captivating videos and informative written content give visitors a reason to dwell on your site. For example, operators should consider embedding virtual tours of apartments, uploading images showing internet speed and floor plans, and adding guides to local attractions and building amenities.
- One-stop-shop - As soon as a visitor lands on your site, you don’t want to give them a chance to leave without booking. Operators should therefore add the following interactive features to their site: Quote portal - Respond to a visitor query with a bespoke quote and carousel photos in 60 seconds; Live chat - Build trust and alleviate any guest concerns quickly and directly; and Direct booking -Enable guests to book simply and securely (and offer discounts so they book direct and not via an OTA).
Boost your SEO
A website full of key details, great recent content and interactive features not only helps convert website visitors, but also helps them find you in the first place by boosting your SEO. SEO or search engine optimisation is essential in the innovative living world. Not only do organic searches drive a large share of bookings, but SEO leads are also more likely to convert.
However, with such an endless array of tips, tricks and advice on enhancing SEO available online, it’s difficult to know where to start. Here’s four quick wins that all serviced apartment and co-living operators can implement.
- Technical - Also known as ‘on-page’, technical SEO relates to how well search engines can find and index your site. Much of this boils down to website design - think page speed, structure, security and mobile-friendliness - so ask your site developer to perform an SEO update.
- Content - Search engines pick up useful and relatable content, so instead of blogs jam-packed with keywords, upload content such as local area guides, Covid policies and helpful travel advice. You should also think about the formatting of content: providing searchable information in bitesize subheadings and bullet points makes it easier for Google to display as a featured snippet.
- Keywords - Sprinkling industry keywords alongside key details lets Google know you answer the questions that people are searching for and prioritises your listing as a result. Meanwhile, you should also focus on keywords that are distinct to your brand or local area. For example, while it’s unlikely you will be top for generic searches like ‘serviced apartments London’, you should be the number one for any search that involves your brand name and London (so mention both lots on your site).
- Links - Links to your site boost your standing, especially if they are geo-local. As such, while all of your own content should host internal links, it’s worth collaborating with local partners and suppliers to link to one another's site for mutual benefit. You could even set up a guest discount at a nearby health spa or sports centre.
Act now for long-term gains
Online presence can seem daunting, but it’s not something to be ignored. Over time, online visibility builds brand loyalty, enhances brand awareness, attracts new guests and brings in extra revenue. As the old saying goes: the investment pays for itself.
At res:harmonics, our array of property management features are designed with your online presence in mind, while we also offer bespoke consultancy services to ensure your company is maximising its digital potential. Do get in touch to find out more.