Why A Digital Audit admin 2018-02-16T17:25:13+00:00
Digital Audit: A Game-Changing Investment
When it comes to owning an adventure tour or travel company, many purveyors are anxious to start obtaining bookings. Most also want to skip the marketing details. While having the desire to ‘jump right in’ is understandable, spending the time to carefully review how your company’s branding and digital footprint are being displayed, is critical.
We know, you have booked clients is the past, you don’t need all of this digital audit or marketing ‘stuff’. Well, the problem with that is, in the digital world, everything changes – and almost daily. Not only are there more competitors seeking those same adventure travelers in and outside of your region, but they are branding themselves to be ahead of the competition for the long-haul.
Websites break, search engines require new parameters, and will also penalize you for those that haven’t been updated. Trip reviews and the ways prospects are informing themselves on which experience to book, is also changing. It’s now become about digital review, what your friends and family have to say online, and what type of experience others wish to share.
While companies in our field of digital marketing would gladly take your money and throw up some Facebook ads, it just isn’t that simple. Here are a few examples of why having a digital audit is critical before actionable steps are put into place:
We received a call from an adventure travel company who had recently fallen from the search results (on the first page) for their best keyword. They were/are the most seasoned company in their field, with the longest history in their area. They recently had a new website developed that was mobile friendly as per Google’s requirements – so why would they suddenly not show up on the front page?
After examining the company’s digital footprint through a Digital Audit, we found a handful of problems. Some of these problems of which we were able to be fixed immediately, and the result of those fixes did increase search rankings within six months.
The biggest problem our team found, was that the website had two versions of the site – something that the non-digital eye could not see or recognize. Search engines, however, picked up on this immediately, as a major error and possibly spam.
The website was receiving the page authority search engines assign, however, that page authority was being split in two. In other words, the website had half of the strength that it used to have, and the website was falling in search quickly.
The SEO Essential Solutions team quickly fixed the problem with an ‘ok’ from the adventure travel company. An issue as slight as this can damage an entire marketing campaign. So, if we had just taken the client’s marketing funds for what they wished to accomplish WITHOUT the digital audit – that money would have been wasted, as would the efforts.
With respects to the same client, we then went through the company’s Google Adwords, auditing their campaigns, ads and keywords. We were able to cut their Adwords costs in half by simply cleaning up their ads, adding negative keywords, adding Extensions, pausing useless keywords that were increasing their bill and focusing primarily on the keywords that were leading to a conversion.
These two efforts were only two absolutely critical steps (of about a dozen) that were directly affecting their marketing efforts. The fixes weren’t expensive and the results were remarkable. With the assistance of SEO Essential Solutions and the adventure tour’s office manager, we devised a plan to work on building up the other necessary improvements to the company’s digital footprint over the course of one year – all on the basis of what was found in the initial Digital Audit.
Repairs were made, quality efforts were then put in place, and the company is now running smoothly and successfully online. If we had continued to just throw money at more advertising, despite the breaks and issues, it would have been like adding fuel to a car with a leaky gas tank. This is why SEO Essential Solutions has made each and every client so successful. We require a Digital Audit so that we aren’t spending your money and effort on useless tasks. We want to make that big difference, and get you on track to earning the loads of money you should be.
What About Branding?
You might be thinking, okay, I see the value in discovering whether my website is broken and going nowhere, but what about this social and content review thing? So here is the deal – there are a lot of companies putting big money out there to sell adventure travel experiences. These big companies are capable of really spending time putting together their design and branding experience from top to bottom. With that being said, they are able to ‘appear’ much bigger and nicer than maybe they are.
Members of our team have toured with a lot of smaller adventure tour companies. These companies are often built by one person or two, who had a true passion for their vision. This passion pushes these companies to go all out, to make sure you have a great time, and to make sure that your experience was well worth your hard-earned money. They have guides, passionate about each experience. These trips would blow your mind, the memories were those you would think about and remember for years to come. However, if you visited the Facebook page or the blog of one of these companies, you would think…”meh” – and likely not give the company a second thought.
Today, the attention span of a website viewer online is so short, that if you don’t wow a prospective client right away, you will lose them indefinitely. Those individuals who likely should have been your customer will move on to another experience that ‘appears’ to be more together and fitting for them. The problem is, often, the company they choose just has a better photographer and branding strategy – rather than a better tour offering.
So, with that being said, it is very important that you get your social media profiles, imagery, and content production calendar all sorted out and methodically utilized. You may not even notice where there are glaring holes in your social accounts or on your blog, and that is where companies like ours can help. In a Digital Audit, we will point out where you have missed the trail, and where you are right on track. We will help you lay out a better path and make sure you stay on it moving forward. Repeating these types of processes and procedures is the only way a small but great company will continue to grow and stay ahead of the competition. Images can literally – be everything.
With more millennials now booking trips, you better believe they will notice your seemingly small flaws like one big train wreck. Their eyes and minds are trained to use websites on their phone with such keenness, that every time they can’t find what they want to see or feel, or even experience a function/booking system that doesn’t work – you are out and the next company is up-to-bat.
Content production is typically for the sake of the potential client, but most often for search engine optimization as well. Writing fresh content, optimizing it and adding it to your website, is important to search engines like Google.
If you have owned an old blog that you haven’t posted to in a while, and have noticed how nobody sees it anymore, this is why. No fresh content, no great rankings. Content isn’t just about copying and pasting testimonials, nor is it about sharing other company’s articles. Content should be authentic, real, and carefully crafted. It should have original photos and be something someone is delighted to stumble upon and share with their friends. Having quality written content with a real story of what it’s like to tour with your company, speaks volumes to search engines and to readers.
Ready for a Digital Audit?
How many bookings do you think your company has missed out on already due to mistakes such as these? If you glance through our digital audit punch list you can begin to see just how painstakingly detailed your report will be prepared. This one time document filled with reports, simple summaries, images, tips and more – can be an absolute game-changer for your business.