Why Multilingual SEO Matters to the Online Travel Industry


Today, 87% of global travelers use the Internet for travel planning according to nSight. Without organic search engine optimization (SEO) in place, people will struggle to find you among the millions of pages of content produced every day. For online businesses, this is a dead-end. As more and more people seek product and business reviews before they buy, it is important that any content be searchable to the locale and in the preferred language to entice the buyer into taking the next action.

Scaling up a business to meet the demands of emerging markets means having relevant content in the native language to improve user experience, grow reach and ultimately increase international revenues.

SEO is a high priority for any travel business to succeed in today’s online world. A traveler’s journey often involves the ability to gather information, discuss, recommend, review and eventually decide and book their travel arrangements, including hotel accommodation – all online. The days of sitting with a travel adviser in an office filled with alluring brochures and posters are long gone. A traveler’s planning process often begins with key search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, Ask, AOL and the Chinese search engine Baidu and Naver, the South Korean search portal. Once searches are made, the results lead travelers to review helpful planning sites like TripAdvisor and Expedia. The end-game for any travel-related business is to capture a booking and reservation. It’s a very competitive market with many companies jostling to get their brand ranked high within the top search engines just to be found. SEO matters.

According to Euromonitor International report, The New Online Travel Consumer (www.etoa.org), global online travel sales accounted for $590 billion in 2013 (25% of total sales). Global online travel sales are set to rise over the coming years, driven by a rising number of emerging global markets. According to the report, North America will grow at 7% CAGR through 2017. Western Europe will catch up with North America by 2017 with $270 billion and Asia Pacific online travel sales are set to DOUBLE from $78 billion to $155 billion.

Multilingual SEO is the backbone of any global search marketing campaign. By developing compelling source web content then translating and “culturalizing” the content for a global audience, it improves search engine rankings and traffic and leads to increased revenue by creating more opportunities and channels for targeted visitors to visit sites in their local language and culture.

Louvre Hotels Case Study_Page_1Welocalize recently worked with global hotel and travel industry leader, Louvre Hotels Group, to design a multilingual SEO and global content strategy. For details, read how Welocalize Drives Site Traffic and Increases Conversions for Louvre Hotels Group. As well as providing SEO expertise and resources, Welocalize was able to work with Louvre to identify which languages to prioritize in the localization strategy based on detailed search volume analysis. This ensured Louvre web content was more visible and profitable in the relevant search engines across the world.

It is proven that creating searchable content that appeals to the wider audience in a local voice and tone is a powerful tool for beating off competition in the organic search and SEO wars. Working with a language partner, like Welocalize, to integrate SEO into the localization strategy helps you get the best rankings, in all your target markets.

If you want to read more about SEO, take a look at The Culturalization of Global Content: Translation and SEO by Traffic Optimiser’s Huw Aveston and Andrea Barp. Traffic Optimiser is Welocalize’s SEO partner.

By Louise Law, Welocalize Communications Manager