Get blogging for bookings

« The Grand Prix Saboteurs | Main | Tracking down TNT coverage in France »

Comments

Philip Voice

I can say with certainty that our blog help us fill our vacancies last season.

We did not advertise anywhere (except ebay for last minute deals) mainly because we were not sure that the work on our gite would be finished but I wrote copiously to keep the readers of our blog interested.

It culminated in eight and a half weeks of bookings.

This season has started well but surprisingly we have bookings in Feb,March,April & May but nothing as yet in June, July , August or September.

We have some good friends near Monpazier who only use Chez Nous and would not know one end of a blog from the other and they made 29,000 euros from one two bedroom gite and one single bedroom gite although they do not accept children.

Repeat bookings is part of the key I think.

Perigord Vacance has had well over 35,000 visitors now so I am aware of blogging as a popular medium.

I regularly log into Geoffrey Coan's site and what is immediately apparent is the quality of the accommodation and the standards and that is in evidence in the way the blog is conducted too.

Hopefully after this season I can confirm that Blogging is the key to holiday rental success for us:-0)

Phil

Geoffrey Coan

Hi Craig

I think you're pretty much spot on in terms of your observations about the link between blogging, google ranking and gite rental bookings.

Last year I really made the effort to write something on the blog two or three times a week, about French things, about our Gite and the surrounds, and about things that others would hopefully find interesting. In that time I think I've grown a small following that read the blog regularly and (as you say) I've generated lots of additional search engine material.

I do keep a weather eye on my website logs and sometimes it's quite fascinating what searches people have been doing that then find their way to us - from some of the more obvious like "bargain gites rentals in brittany easter 2007" and "drive from calais to pontivy" to some more unusual ones like "ikea nantes address" and "curt stavis email address"! Interestingly people reading the Blog from searching on Google outnumbers Yahoo and MSN by about 92% : 5% : 3%, underlining Google's search engine dominance.

I've been asked before whether I think it's worth writing the Blog and whether I've had any bookings as a result. Although a good number of Blog visitors go on to look at other pages in the blog, or on our gite website, I have to admit that I'm not aware that any of the bookings so far have been as a direct result of stumbling across the Blog. So on one hand you could argue that the Blog's not driving additional bookings.

Instead I think the linkage is more complex and subtle than this. Writing more content and adding more internal and external links gives me more "routes in" to the website, but I think more crucially it also it also gives more "authority" to the subject area. Google et al find I'm mentioning my targetted keywords such as Gite, Brittany, Holiday Home, etc more often and in more different contexts than the otherwise plain website would present, so as a result boost my search engine ranking for these keyword searches.

The other important thing is that my making more postings I'm also telling visitors much more about ourselves - making ourselves more real as holiday home owners, rather than being just a faceless website. It's been said before that people buy off people, and by writing from a personal perspective you help to build that rapport and credibility. Certainly a number of our guests have commented that they've read the Blog and so know a little more about us before they book.

Phil Voice (over at Perigord Vacance) is demonstrating the same thing - people have read his Blog, know a bit about him, his family and the renovations, and are now going to experience his part of France "in the flesh" as it were.

Cheers, Geoffrey

The comments to this entry are closed.

Free weekly newsletter