It’s no secret that tourism is a huge industry. In the U.S. alone, travelers—both domestic and international—spend nearly $1 trillion every year. How do tourists choose where to spend all of that money? Increasingly, out-of-town consumers are using their smartphone to discover their agenda and plans while on vacation. If your business is lacking a mobile marketing strategy, you could be missing out on visitors in your area that could boost sales.
Why Mobile Matters
Any tool a traveler uses needs to fit two criteria:
It needs to be compact and portable
It MUST be dependable
This goes for their sources of information just as much as it does, say, a suitcase, or a travel toothbrush.
Mobile searches let travelers locate businesses on the fly. (77% of travelers research local businesses in spare moments such as while they are commuting, or resting in their hotel rooms.) And unlike those rest-stop information centers crammed with glossy brochures, they have access to objective consumer reviews from sites like Google,Yelp, and Tripadvisor.
Additionally, the “Maps” function of modern smartphones makes this process incredibly easy. With just a single search, a traveler can, for example, find all nearby restaurants, read their reviews, find out their menus, and then load up step-by-step directions. In just a matter of minutes.
Are You Easy to Find Online?
There’s a few things you can do to make it easier for potential customers to find your business through mobile.
- First, make sure your business is showing up in local search results. 61% of travelers begin looking for businesses using a search engine. Make sure your business is listed in Google’s Business Locations, and tailor the content of your website to show up in relevant local searches.
- Make sure your website is responsive on mobile devices. This is super important, as you want to make sure that mobile viewers can easily use your website. If that’s not motivation enough Google’s newest algorithm penalizes the search rankings of non-responsive websites. Optimize for mobile or fall into obscurity.
- Offer on-the-go deals with a trusted site like Valpak.com. Travelers and locals alike will use mobile searches to find coupons and special offers when researching businesses and entertainment or dining options. A special offer can be the thing that sets you apart from your competitor and gets you the sale.
Get Started Today
With all of this in mind, here are some things you can start doing right away to ensure your business is attracting the lucrative tourist audience.
- Test how well your website looks and performs on mobile devices. You can use Google’s Mobile Friendly Test to make sure your site isn’t being penalized in their rankings.
- Consider what industry you’re in and determine how people are searching.
- Where can you place ads based on this information. Do you need an SEO strategy?
- Determine how visitors are using their devices in relation to your business.
Once you have completed these tasks, keep an eye on your web traffic to see if you notice any spikes, and use that information to further improve your mobile marketing strategy.