One of the most pertinent questions you should be asking if you are an accommodation owner looking to take advantage of Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) is How Can I Improve OTA Content Scores?
That’s because, as we’ve already outlined in a previous post, your OTA content score is extremely important when it comes to determining your accommodation’s ranking on the various Online Travel Agencies.
In the same way that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) helps websites rank at the top of the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), optimising and improving your OTA content scores help your accommodation rank higher on sites like Expedia, Agoda, Booking.com, LateRooms.com, Hotels.com and many more.
With that in mind, here’s how you can improve OTA content scores:
1. High-quality images
It’s a bit of an old cliché, but they say ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ and that’s absolutely true when it comes to optimising your OTA listing and in turn improve OTA content scores on the Online Travel Agents. Images should be high quality but realistic. Avoid using a wide angled lens to make rooms look bigger as potential bookers will compare your images to those uploaded onto Tripadvisor by past guests. If there are big discrepancies this can be off-putting.
With OTAs (like booking.com, Expedia etc), the more images the better. That’s because travellers love being able to see exactly what the accommodation they are considering booking looks like. Include pictures of bathrooms and toilets as this is necessary on many OTAs in order to achieve a high score. If you don’t, potential guests might think you’re hiding aspects that aren’t up to par.
Top Tip To Help Improve OTA Content Scores.
look to upload images that show your available rooms from all different angles too as it helps add important perspective for customers looking to book your hotel. Include images of anything you offer for free within the room such as toiletries, tea and coffee, and be sure to make the most of impressive views from your bedroom windows.
2. Accurate, relevant tags
It’s also important to add accurate, relevant meta tags to any images you upload to an OTA. Tags help add additional context to your images, ensure the right images are shown at the right time and improve your OTA content score in the process.
3. In-depth descriptions
Make sure the description on your OTA listing is always accurate, relevant and comprehensive, as well as kept up to date with any changes. Be careful to be informative but not subjective, keep things simple to allow a seamless translation to different languages.
Try to think of every question a potential guest may have and answer them in your listing description.
Having to ask a question is a barrier that harms conversion rates.
Provide potential guests with everything they need and more in your description.
4. Room type associations
While it might seem trivial, room type associations are important. The OTAs use them to show potential guests relevant information, including images, relating to the room type they are considering. Make sure yours are always accurate and update them immediately if anything changes.
5. Rates, offers & value-add services
While it’s not the only factor guests consider when choosing accommodation, price is still a huge consideration. Online Travel Agencies know this, which is why offering competitive rates and prices that are in line with your competition can help improve your OTA content score.
Potential guests also love value-add services (things like free Wi-Fi, off-road parking, free breakfast, etc.) and so too do OTAs, which is why offering them can improve your OTA content score (and your ranking).
Online Travel Agencies want to keep their customers as happy as possible at all times. That’s why reviews play a huge role in determining your OTA content score, and it makes sense why.
For example, put yourself in a guest’s shoes. If there were two different hotels that were equally priced, located in the same area and had similar facilities, value-add services, etc., but one had amazing reviews and the other didn’t, which would you plump for?
Finally, if you do ever receive a review that’s less than flattering, be sure to publicly respond to it in a positive way. It will go a long way to showing how seriously you take the feedback of your guests and how, as a result, you look to better the service you are offering
Recommended Hotels was specifically founded to support accommodation providers who want more business through OTAs.
We stay abreast of every change and development that OTAs make to ensure your accommodation listings are always fully optimised.