Penguin Update: A Disaster for SEO in Hotel and Tourism Marketing

Trouble with Tourism Search and SEO for Hotel Marketing

See YouTube profile for more on how small hotels and tourism marketing is failing with latest Google penguin updates

We have not tested all markets but here is what we found with hospitality. We were looking for listings accommodation in a specific market. A year ago they were many small local hotels listed in the search results. Today they have all gone, only large brands and OTA are listed.  Penguin it seems is looked for authority brands.

 

The video is one of a series we are doing on our Free Video Series on tourism and destination marketing .

The videos are in depth analysis of marketing and cover SEO, Press Releases, content marketing and all of the latest trends. Subscription is free.

Check out the Youtube profile and blog (below) for more information on search-evolution.

 

Related blogs

Evolution of Search by Danny Sullivan | Review and analysis of SEO evolution on Blogger

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Page Rank & link Building Post Panda

These two charts take a moment to understand. They are really cool in displaying concepts that few understand. I borrowed these from Ryan Diess’ Digital Marketing Membership which is great resource for marketers.

what makes page rank

The first chart tells us what goes into making page rank and what each component is worth. rust and authority of the site is the key. Nest is link popularity, then anchor text followed by on page SEO and keyword analysis. After that hosting, traffic and social indexing follow. Now G is always tweaking these and the Penguin update shifted anchor text a good bit. Lately the bounce rate of the site and how long people stay on it is given more relative importance and we expect this to continue to be a defining feature of ranking a site.

link building tactics post panda

link building tactics - effectiveness post panda

In the second graph the pre-panda and post-panda effectiveness are evaluated. Here we clearly see that authority is a top priority and that has not changed with the updates. Content sharing and guest blogging have increased in effectiveness after the update.  Social bookmarking remains the same and article distribution took a dive. Press release distribution too has been less effective in terms search ranking. Link farms and directory listing are basically ineffective for  search ranking.

 

 

Perspective

We know that directory links are still valid for page rank, so long as they are quality links with natural anchor text. Original Press release do drive traffic but use a authority site like PRWEB and don’t re-distribute the same PR on multiple platforms. If you are going to outsource any of this be sure that the contractor knows what they are doing. Contrived links, wheel and such will hurt you. Build out your foundation with good original content that is natural.

also see
backlinks/
update-on-tutorials-panda/
update-on-tutorials-penguin/

Update on Tutorials: Penguin

We have  a number of queries on how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has changed with Penguin and Panda.

Panda was about content. It looked for the quality of content and especially penalized sites with duplicate content (SEE more in our Blog on Panda). Panda hurt site like hubpages that ended up having their content duplicated across the internet and often had duplicate content HubPages itself- see Panda.

 See latest test on penguin 4 (2.0) for SEO in tourism >>>

 

PENGUIN & SEO

In 2012 the big update was Penguin, which is about links and relevancy. Below is a summary of what this means to SEO on-page optimization. When looking at our tutorial on keywords and on page SEO, keep this in mind.

Anchor Text

With Penguin, Google took a hard look at links and found that spammers tended to over-optimize links; their activity was seen as unnatural. It was particularly the tendency of SEO experts to never use natural links (naked links like http://yoursite.com) and instead make the anchor text (what you call the link – what users see) something to do with the keywords you are trying to rank for. (like the “best family holidays in Timbuktu”)

Sites that used keywords as anchor text suddenly found their ranking drop. Now you need to have as many “Click Here” and “yrdomain.com” as anchor text. The recommendation is to keep keyword anchors  like  “keyword-anchor text” to under 40% of the links.

Keywords Stuffing

Keywords must never be more that 2% density.  Make sure you don’t have too many keywords in anchor text, headers etc, that don’t seem natural and are aimed at search engines rather than readers.

Sites and pages can be hurt by being too focused on a particular keyword or phrase. Pages that are too focused can rank lower than pages that are focused on a wider net of related keywords. They tend to have more stable rankings for the core keyword and rank for a wider net of keywords.

When building your content, use latent Semantic and Semantic words to cover the subject. When writing about your hotel or tourism offer, intersperse related words like:  travel, holidays, trips, tourism, vacations, tours, travel agents, hotels, tourism activities, festivals, events, sightseeing, adventure, romance, getaways, hideaways, escape, families, local guides, lifestyles, fun, safari, restaurants,entertainment, nightlife, clubs, where they can add to the relevance of your content.

Links from Similar Niche Sites

Penguin also hit sites with few incoming links from websites in the same niche. Link quality and relevance are key indicators, and not being able to get quality links from authoritative domains in your niche can be a  sign that your page is not relevant.

Google is looking for other factors that can’t be as easily manipulated as anchor text. Getting a link from an authoritative or relevant site in the same niche is much harder to manipulate and therefore it has a lot of merit to search ranking.

Link Pruning

If you find that some of your inbound links are spammy, contact the site owners and ask to have them removed. It’s not easy, so in the meantime work on getting more natural links so that the unnatural balance will decrease.

Some Things got Better

The latest Penguin Update actually revives some links  including; links from directories, press releases networks, social networks, web 2.0 sites, images, profiles, comments and others, that were not effective for some time. This counters some of the previous site that were depreciated by Panda   see Our Panda page.

 

SUMMARY:

Unnatural links. Make sure you have links from related websites, not link farms, and not using viral linking techniques.

Internal links. Links to your own pages should be randomly assigned to “naked links”, “click here links” and “keyword links”.

External links.
Link to relevant pages like Wiki pages. This  can help make the site more relevant and helpful to users. This will gain credit from search engine ranking.

Keywords Stuffing.
Keywords must never be more that 2% density.  Make sure you don’t have too many keywords in anchor text, headers etc, that don’t seem natural and are aimed at search engines rather than readers.

Resources

Backlinks | Build Natural Links

Open Site Explorer and ahrefs are a couple of tools you can use to get a view of your link profile and anchor text diversity.

http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2172839/Google-Penguin-Update-Impact-of-Anchor-Text-Diversity-Link-Relevancy

see Panda

 http://amazon.BuildyourBusinessOnlineBook.com

Update  on Penguin 4 (2.0) for Tourism on-page SEO >>>