Why Blogs are Important on Rural Tourism Business Web Sites

by Joanne Steele on March 4, 2010

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First, let me define what a blog is.

A blog is a new page of content added to your web site on a regular and consistent basis. It can contain text, video, photos or any combination of those three things.

You noticed that I said “regular and consistent”, not daily. One of the misconceptions about blogs is that it will have you chained to your computer writing something new everyday. NO! Regular and consistent means however often you feel able to blog.

Why rural tourism businesses need a blog.

One of my favorite online marketing companies, Hubspot, has collected statistical data to answer this question. They have a series of top-notch webinars on every aspect of online marketing.

Your blog will result in more pages on your web site for Google to index.

Google loves new content. Their googlebots crawl every web site on a regular basis looking for new content, and over time rewarding relevant new content with better placement on their search engine.

Hubspot reported that web sites with blogs had 434% more pages indexed by Google than sites without blogs!!

You rural tourism blog will result in more links coming into your site from other places on the Internet.

Besides good placement on search engines to attract customers, you benefit from other web sites, directories, forums and social media sites talking about you and linking to the content on your web site.

These links are sitting out there encouraging people to check out your web site, and they don’t cost you a dime.

Hubspot discovered that sites with blogs had 97% more inbound links.

A blog on your rural tourism business web site will  allow you to compete for visitors regardless of your advertising budget.

We know that people are using the Internet as their primary tool for making travel decisions, planning and reservations.  A tourism business’s greatest challenge is attracting visitors to its web site.

Before the Internet, attracting customers depended on the size of your marketing budget. You simply couldn’t compete against destinations with a zillion dollars to use for advertising in glossy magazines and television.

Today, most of those magazines are out of business and people use Tivo to avoid television commercials.

With the Internet and your own regularly updated web site including a blog, you can attract more customers based on your effort not your budget. You can compete effectively with the largest tourism destination and the richest resort!

Hubspot reported that web sites with blogs had 55% more web visitors.

Now that you have hard data about WHY you need a blog, the question is HOW to fit it into your already busy schedule. You also want information about WHAT you need to do to create an effective blog.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll cover all those topics, resulting in you turning into a confident, effective blogger by April.

Do you need an updated web site?

If you’re still working with an old HTML web site you can’t update yourself, it’s time for a change, right now. If you’re not regularly updating because you can’t afford to pay someone every time you need to make a change, your web site isn’t working for you anymore. It’s like having a highway billboard sitting on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere.

You’ll want a WordPress blog – that’s the program, and after looking at lots of themes, I recommend Thesis, a premium theme that makes updating easy for everyone from the most tech savvy to the reformed luddite.

If your web master is unable to help you, let me recommend the folks at Kim Solga Artworks. They understand small tourism businesses and can help you get what you need at a price you can afford.

Other posts you might be interested in:

12 Things a Small Town Tourism Business Owner Should Know About Leaving Online Comments.

Small Rural Tourism Businesses! Ignore Social Networking at Your Peril!

Foxtongue’s Flickr photostream Thanks Foxtongue! We love your work!

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