Many UK online travel sites are failing to make the most of videos and images to maximise their visibility in online searches on Google. The study is part of a comprehensive new report by search marketing agency, Epiphany, that reviews search marketing in the travel sector. It highlights that very few travel-related sites seem to [...]

Many UK online travel sites are failing to make the most of videos and images to maximise their visibility in online searches on Google. The study is part of a comprehensive new report by search marketing agency, Epiphany, that reviews search marketing in the travel sector. It highlights that very few travel-related sites seem to have any notable presence in search engine results via video and images.


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This is a huge missed opportunity for many travel sites according to Epiphany’s Director of Operations, Andy Heaps, who authored the report. Heaps said, “Google often brings video and image results onto the first page of its search results and visual content such as this provides a natural way to attract the attention of people who are searching for holiday destinations, hotels, flights or other travel related information.”
“In comparison to other sectors, the travel industry is extremely sophisticated in its use of search, so it’s a surprise to see that photography and video is still relatively under-developed, especially because they are usually a key asset for travel marketers,” Heaps added.
Epiphany used a variety of data sources and tools, including Searchmetrics’ search and social analytics software, to produce the report that investigates the search marketing strategies being used by the most visible travel sites in the UK.
The company used Searchmetrics’ Video and Image Visibility scores* as a measure of how effectively UK travel sites are using video and images in their organic search marketing (see chart underneath). These scores are based on data relating to how often video and image content from specific web-sites appears in Google UK search results, gathered by analysing millions of search results. Searchmetrics collates weekly data from the search results for millions of keywords to populate the database that powers its online software for search and social marketers.

Video and Image Search Visibility of Leading UK Online Travel Sites

Epiphany’s analysis found that the TripAdvisor.co.uk site achieved the highest Image Visibility score (20,000), meaning that images from the site are more likely to be visible in Google UK searches than images from other leading travel sites analysed in the study. Monarch.co.uk came top for Video Visibility (6,000) so it is the best performing travel site in terms of video visibility on Google UK. However, most sites performed poorly, scoring below 2,000 for both image and video visibility at the time the data was collected (week commencing 20th May, 2012) .
“Because images and videos appear very prominently when they are displayed within Google’s search results pages, they often get high click-through rates, meaning they generate a significant amount of additional traffic. But obviously the research indicates that many travel brands are missing out on these benefits by not doing enough work with optimising image and video content on their sites to help them appear in search results,” concluded Heaps.
The full report, which also details the strategies behind travel brands’ organic, social and paid visibility, is available from www.epiphanysearch.co.uk
Methodology
The Video Visibility score is based on how often video content from a specific site appears in Google UK search results, taking into account how highly the video content is positioned in the search engine results pages and the search volume of the corresponding keywords. It is based on an analysis of the Google search results for millions of keywords that Searchmetrics performs on a weekly basis.
The Image Visibility score is based on how often image content from a specific site appears in Google UK search results, taking into account how highly the image content is positioned in the search engine results pages and the search volume of the corresponding keywords. It is based on an analysis of the Google search results for millions of keywords that Searchmetrics performs on a weekly basis.
The above visibility scores were collated during the week commencing 20th May 2012.