Family travel is on the rise. Between 2014 and 2017, Google searches for family vacations grew three times faster than other searches in the travel sphere. As part of our series on guest segmentation, we take a look at ways you can appeal to all kinds of families in order to secure more of their reservations.
There’s nothing like quality family time. And there’s no better way to enjoy it than on holiday, away from the stresses of work, school runs and the daily commute.
Whether it’s millennial parents eager to show their young kids the world or baby boomers catching up with their grown-up Generation X-ers, it’s increasingly apparent that travellers are more willing to take the whole family on the road.
So, how can your property cater to this growing demand for family travel?
1) Highlight selling points for families on your website
When it comes to your website content, it’s important to know your property’s unique selling points and communicate them clearly. Analyse your content from the perspective of a particular guest segment, in this case, a parent.
What would someone travelling with kids look for when booking an accommodation? Do you offer baby cots, allergen-free rooms, a nursing/changing room or a children’s menu?
Do you have any amenities that would keep older children and teens occupied? A games room/library or free bike rentals, for example. What kind of activities can you offer or arrange for multi-generational families gatherings? Do you allow pets to stay at your property?
On your site, create a page specifically for each type of traveller and highlight the most relevant selling points for them, e.g. ‘Top Amenities for Travellers with Toddlers’, ‘Family Movie Nights’ or ‘Quiz Nights’.
Try to share all kinds of content, from photos and videos to area guides that highlight all the family-friendly activities in your region. You could also provide tips on transportation, weather and what to pack pack, depending on the season.
2) Write blog posts aimed at families
If you want to engage families searching for accommodation online, you might consider starting a blog. That way, you can attract guests with interesting articles about your area, the local cuisine or the most popular family-friendly highlights.
Blogs can also boost your ranking in Google search results and bring more visitors to your website – so much so that writing more than 20 blog posts can increase website traffic by up to 30%.
With so many people using search engines to look for travel inspiration, they can play a key role in getting more people to visit your website – and make direct bookings.
In 2017, searches related to family vacations showed the strongest year-on-year growth within the travel sector. So families are definitely using search engines to help them make travel plans – for you, it’s a question of taking advantage of that. According to Google Trends, ‘family trip ideas’, ‘baby-friendly vacations’ and ‘family vacation ideas with toddlers’ were among the most popular searches. You can use these keywords to inspire ideas for your blog – just make sure you use them throughout your text to improve your website’s SEO.
If you’ve never blogged before, check out our blogging tips to attract more guests.
3) Promote your property on social media
One increasingly influential guest segment is millennials, who are now entering (or already are experiencing) parenthood. Recent research suggests millennial family travellers are more likely to actively engage with travel brands via social media.
Promoting your hotel on social media is a smart, cost-effective way to improve your online presence, boost your brand and reach new potential guests. It’s therefore a good idea to come up with a catchy, branded hashtag to use in all your social media posts. For example: #livingitupathotelcalifornia #suchalovelyplace
According to research, millennial family travellers are interested in relaxation and exploration when on holiday because they want to experience different cultures, cuisines and meet new people. You could use these as inspiration and then check out our social media content ideas.
And naturally, millennials want to share photos and videos when they’re travelling, which means they want and expect fast and free WiFi at their accommodation.
4) Partner up with local businesses
Another good idea is to talk to other local businesses and see if they’re interested in partnering up with your property. That way you’ll be able to extend your offering and perhaps even curate family packages in partnership with local restaurants and attractions.
Teaming up with other businesses can also help you appeal to local families who are searching for a ‘staycation’ – a quick holiday close to home. Keywords and phrases such as ‘inexpensive family vacations’ and ‘cheap weekend getaways’ are among the most searched travel terms on Google in recent years, so you can capitalise on this travel trend to earn extra revenue.
It’s also worth getting to know your local tourism board. You could explore ways of collaborating in order to generate new business, or see if they have readymade family-focused marketing material that you could add to your website.
As you can see, there are any number of ways you can appeal to more families and bring in more bookings for your property. Want to learn more? Check out the other posts in our series on guest segmentation and see how your property can attract more business travellers and millennials to your accommodation.