SEO for tourism, tour operators and destinations

Do you have a tourism business or attraction that needs to be found on Google? If the answer is yes, SEO for your tourism website should be an integral part of your digital marketing strategy.

Mankind Digital are experts in SEO for tourism websites

In our experience, Search Engine Optimisation is responsible for attracting more than 70% of the people that visit the websites we manage. The majority of online enquiries our clients receive can be attributed to customers searching for keywords on a search engine. SEO is often the first impression of a business online, making it fundamental to a successful marketing strategy.

SEO can help your travel business get found on Google, increase enquiries and bookings. It will also improve your business’s overall brand awareness and credibility online.

What is SEO?

Search engine optimisation or SEO is the practice of optimising a website and its affiliated online footprint to improve a websites’ visibility on search engines for specific keywords or search phrases. In the tourism sector, there are specific travel keywords for SEO that are most relevant for each business, destination or attraction.

The visibility of keywords on search engines is called ‘ranking.’ To rank on a search engine, a website and its affiliated online presence need to comply with the many ‘rules’ that make up the search engine algorithm.

There are eight areas of SEO that are key to delivering an effective SEO strategy. These are:

  • On-page SEO
  • Off-page SEO
  • Local Search Engine Optimisation
  • Technical SEO
  • Content development
  • Copywriting for SEO
  • Website audits & analysis
  • SEO growth strategy

SEO for the travel sector

If you work in tourism and travel, search engine optimisation is the magnet that can consistently provide your organisation with new enquiries and bookings.

Here are 6 reasons why SEO is important for any travel business or destination:

  • First impressions count! The information appearing on a search engine is often the first impression a potential customer will have
  • Enhance the experience your customers have before they get to your website
  • Get potential customers to the right information, faster
  • Make it easier for new customers to find your website
  • Building trust with tourists and travellers is important to win new customers
  • Improve the way your website performs and increase enquiries

Mankind Digital’s SEO services for tourism businesses, brands and destinations

Whilst there may be more than 200 different factors that influence where a website is listed on a search engine like Google, we have found that sweet spot for the travel sector. Unlike most agencies, we remove the jargon and provide you with information you can understand.

Our search engine optimisation services include:

& Technical SEO
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Local Search Engine Optimisation
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Content Development
& SEO Copywriting
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Website Audits
& Analysis
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SEO Growth
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Optimise your tourism website to appear prominently on search engines.

Technical SEO is what happens behind the scenes on your website to ensure that your site is performing to its highest potential. Our experts combine technical SEO practices with SEO tactics that are implemented within the content on your website to deliver results for your business.

We can help with:

  • Improving your website’s navigation and architecture
  • Implementing CMS technical requirements for SEO
  • Updating your website with new features and content modules
  • Adding new content and optimising existing content
  • Reporting on website performance and user experience
  • Travel and tourism website development for SEO.


A successful SEO strategy relies heavily on off-page SEO and the SEO work completed beyond your own website.

‘Off-Page SEO’ refers to the tactics that are implemented elsewhere on the internet, rather than making changes to your website. Many off-page SEO tactics need to be considered and applied effectively to enhance a tourism website’s visibility in the search engine results. These include:

  • Local SEO
  • Link building
  • Citation building and directory listings
  • Content marketing strategy
  • Social media marketing


Increase your real estate on search engines and maximise your brand presence online with local SEO.

We can help to build up your professional profile on Google to give your business the best chance of reaching, connecting with and attracting new customers. Our local SEO services include:

  • Add maps, branded photos and logos on Google
  • Update contact information and opening hours on Google
  • Highlight your key services and experiences for travellers
  • Increase enquiries from online reviews
  • Give travellers and tourists a taste of your offering before they visit your website


SEO content development and copywriting for search engine optimisation is a specialist skillset. It is one of the key drivers of a successful SEO campaign and therefore, important to get it right.

Our content development and SEO copywriting services are designed to supercharge your website copy to enhance your website’s visibility on search engines. We also:

  • Write content that entices potential new customers to take action
  • Write new content & blogs you can share across your social channels
  • Spend time auditing your current content strategy
  • Prepare detailed recommendations on how to improve
  • Create content plans for longer-term impact
  • Produce content briefs with topics before commencing


Knowledge is empowering and numbers are our forte.

We dive into the data collected on your existing website and monitor competitor activity to develop SEO strategies that thrive. Mankind Digital can help your business to:

  • Learn more about your customers
  • Review your website performance
  • Understand where customers start their online journey
  • Monitor key competitors
  • Continually improve website content


An SEO growth strategy provides a framework to help tourism providers excel online.

At Mankind Digital, our approach to online marketing is strategic. Delivering SEO for our clients is no different. Before commencing with an SEO campaign, every client we work with can expect the below deliverables. This ensures that our work is based on a strategic methodology from day one.

  • In-depth technical audits across nine key areas
  • Detailed keyword research and competitor profile
  • Initial 12-month road map of SEO tactics to be implemented
  • Off-page SEO and content marketing strategy based on your business objectives
  • Detailed reports of existing marketing efforts and impact

Frequently Asked Questions about SEO

There are four main types of SEO or strategies for optimising a website to increase its chances for improved visibility in the search engine results. These various strategies require a unique understanding of SEO. They require specific tactics that are geared towards delivering targeted results. The four main types of SEO are:

Local SEO          

Local SEO is imperative in the tourism sector. This approach focuses on a physical location and the area that any associated services are delivered within. On Google, localised search results appear in the standard organic search listings, the Google map pack and Google My Business profiles.

The algorithms for the organic Google search results, the Google map pack and Google My Business work separately. This means a business or website can show up in both the standard search engine results, map pack and Google My Business sections at the same time. There are different SEO strategies for gaining visibility in all three areas of the search engine results pages. Talk to us to learn how.

Lead Generation SEO

An SEO strategy for lead generation is targeted towards generating leads from enquiries that start as a keyword search. Lead generation for SEO focuses on converting a warm customer into a valuable enquiry, starting with the content that appears in the search engine results through to conversion rate optimisation on the website itself. Detailed tracking of enquiries via phone calls and enquiry forms submissions are key to managing a successful SEO lead generation strategy, along with tracking value/potential revenue against each lead. This shows direct results and hard leads that have arisen from the investment in SEO.  

Ecommerce SEO

An eCommerce SEO strategy targets specific products in the online shop, building visibility for these products in the search results. The core focus for SEO on an eCommerce website is often conversion rate optimisation. This approach relies on website analytics and tracking to collect data that paints a picture of what is happening on the website and where the barriers are before the checkout. An eCommerce SEO strategy also includes heavy optimisation of product imagery and product information.                                                                                                 

Enterprise SEO 

Enterprise SEO is generally for larger organisations with enterprise websites that have thousands (and in some cases millions) of pages. These websites have a huge impact on the business revenue generated and reputation. They require a high level of project management and many resources to maintain. They need automation and AI to keep them up to date and accurate. Enterprise SEO is generally targeted at addressing a high volume of pages, links, technical issues and automation. In most cases, specialist enterprise tools and SEO management software are required to manage an enterprise SEO strategy.

There are many SEO tools and platforms available for search engine optimisation. Many of these tools are free or require a monthly subscription plan that is tailored towards the size of the strategy and various tactics being managed. 

Some of the most popular (and free!) SEO tools are:


SEMrush is more than a tool for SEO. It is a platform filled with data and marketing insights that can be used to steer the overall marketing strategy. Some of the most useful data assists with keyword research, competitor insights and market trends. SEMrush is often used when planning an SEO strategy. It is a fantastic tool for conducting keyword research and for validating search phrases that will be competitive within an SEO campaign. We particularly like the competitor monitoring tools available. 

Screaming Frog

Screaming Frog is used for completing detailed SEO technical audits on websites. Its SEO ‘spider’ can crawl up to 500 web page URLs for free and it reports on content issues such as broken links, duplicate content, metadata, redirects and spelling and grammar checks. Other technical capabilities include checking HTML and custom source code, AMP crawling and validation, amongst other features.

Google Analytics  

Google Analytics is a free website analytics platform. It tracks where website traffic has originated from, what happens when this traffic interacts with the website, the demographics of the people visiting the website and various other insightful marketing metrics. Google Analytics 360 is an advanced enterprise marketing version of Google Analytics, with a subscription fee of around $150k per year. 

Google Search Console

Previously known as Google Webmaster Tools, Google Search Console is a free Google product that is part of the Google Marketing suite. It is used to monitor webpage visibility and ranking of specific keywords, click-through rates and impressions. Google Search Console is also used for checking web page indexing and to prompt Google to recrawl updated pages. This is recommended following any SEO updates or changes made to a web page. Submitting a web page review to Google via Google Search Console initiates reindexing and a ranking review. 

Google My Business

Google My Business (GMB) is a free business profile that appears within the search engine results. GMB profiles include business information and a map, usually generated by Google when a new business is identified. Business owners can then claim and verify the GMB profile as their own. Once claimed and verified, the profile information can be updated by the business owner. This includes contact details, business information, opening hours, photographs and special instructions. GMB also offers business owners an opportunity to post updates about their business, similar to social media posts on Facebook and Instagram. Customer reviews are posted to Google My Business and business owners can respond accordingly. 

We also love Google Trends, Travel Insights with Google, SEO Profiler, Google Data Studio, Google Keyword Planner, Answer the Public and a variety of other useful tools for planning and managing our SEO campaigns for our clients.

SEO is a longer-term digital marketing strategy. Once the technical fixes and on-page optimisation phases have been completed, it can take a minimum of three to six months to start to see the benefits of an SEO strategy. Depending on the competitive nature of the industry and the keywords that a business would like to rank for, it can often take longer. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees or fixed timelines that can be promised with SEO. An agency that guarantees to deliver specific SEO results within a fixed timeframe is often an agency that is not to be trusted.

To deliver an effective SEO strategy there are many resources required. SEO is very time-consuming to deliver. It requires a team of experts that specialise in different areas of SEO. For example, SEO copywriting is a very different skill set to link marketing and technical SEO. If SEO is done properly, it simply isn’t possible to deliver SEO cheaply.

With this in mind, many marketing agencies do offer cheap SEO solutions. However, to deliver SEO on a budget, many dodgy practices are undertaken. From the outside, these tactics appear to work – at first. Eventually, Google’s AI will identify a website that has used these dodgy practices to try to rank higher on a search engine. Once identified, Google will penalise the website, pushing it further down on the search engine than where it was before. In some cases, the website is completely removed from the search engine. This is called a Google penalty for black hat SEO.

When choosing an SEO provider, it’s important to consider their track record, the reviews they have received from existing clients and most importantly, the price tag. If it sounds cheap, it’s usually for a reason.

SEO experts have been studying Google’s algorithm for decades. They have identified a framework to help businesses get found on Google.

An SEO agency or search engine marketer is usually focused on improving the visibility of a tourism website for SEO or a specific web page on search engines. They are also focused on improving a brand’s overall digital footprint, online perception and converting new, high-quality leads into enquiries and sales.

In the context of tourism, there are several specialist SEO strategies specifically designed to deliver results for tourism organisations and destinations, depending on their tourism marketing objectives.

SEO specialists will often be targeting destination-oriented and location-based travel keywords for SEO that promote activities, attractions and experiences offered in the region.

They will develop a long-term SEO strategy that is designed to attract new customers for the services or activities offered, then work towards achieving (and retaining) this every month using an SEO management plan.

Social media marketing for tourism and travel businesses is another valuable way to build an SEO strategy. 

Speak with us about how we can help you in this area.

The ultimate goal of a search engine (including Google, Bing, Yahoo and Baidu) is to present information to people of the highest quality and relevance to the keywords they typed into the search engine.

A search engine’s priority is to provide its users with the best possible experience. This ensures that they are more likely to return to the same search engine time and time again, rather than using a different search engine.

The information that shows up on a search engine and the order it is presented in is not selected at random. The order of the information that shows up, known as ranking, is selected by artificial intelligence or an algorithm. 

The algorithm is made up of complex signals that dictate the order of the web pages listed on the search engine. Many of these signals relate directly to the content on a web page and the functionality of the website. Artificial intelligence known as ‘spiders’ crawl through or scan a website for its content, functionality and usability. The information collected by the spiders is sent back to the search engine for analysis and indexation. This indexation is the decision on where to rank a web page in the search results.

This is called ‘Crawling Indexation.’ Crawling indexation provides answers when matching the users’ search intent with the relevance of a web page.

In the context of Google or a search engine, an algorithm is calculated by artificial intelligence based on a ruleset and a combination of signals that determine an outcome. In this case, that outcome is the positioning of a specific webpage on the search engine.

The Google algorithm is based on over 200 signals and/or ranking factors that change daily. Google does not disclose exactly what these signals are. However, digital marketing experts have studied some of the key factors that impact visibility for web pages and websites to show in the search engine results.

Four of the most well-known on-page factors that influence visibility within search results are:

  • The quality of the content within the web page
  • Whether said content matches the keywords the user types into the search engine.
  • Quality of the website itself from a technical perspective, the way a website is built and how it operates
  • What a user does while they’re on the website (user experience)

Learn more about how the Google algorithm works.

Every few years, search engines do a major overhaul on how their algorithms work. The weighting and importance of certain algorithm signals change. In some cases, these major algorithm updates happen more frequently. Whilst smaller algorithm changes occur daily and can happen hundreds of times a year, it’s the major changes that are crucial to keeping abreast of.

8 major algorithm updates have rolled out over the past decade. These updates have changed the landscape for SEO completely, affecting many businesses that use their websites to attract new customers.

Amongst the major updates were the Panda Update, the Penguin Update and most recently, the Page Experience Update. This algorithm update commenced in July 2021 and it caters towards improving the user experience whilst browsing.

Page speed and non-shifting, stable pages are key factors that are assessed. The repercussions of this most recent update are expected to impact the search engine results for some time to come.  Websites with web pages that offer a high-quality browsing experience will be prioritised in the search engine results going forward.

According to Google, search intent is broken up into four micro-moments. These are important to understand if connecting with potential new customers is important for your business.

The Google micro-moments are based on the concept that there are usually four key reasons a person will use a search engine. These are based on the intent and expectation that person has in mind when they turn to a search engine for help.

The Google micro-moments are:

  • When a user needs to look something up or search for specific information (‘I want to know’ moments)
  • When they intend to make a purchase (‘I want to buy’ moments)
  • When they want assistance to compare two or more products or complete a specific task (‘I want to do’ moments)
  • When they need to get somewhere and are looking for directions (‘I want to go’ moments)

Learn more about the Google micro-moments relevant to the tourism sector on our blog.

The tourism sector is a crowded place. There are millions of travel businesses, tour operators and destinations all vying for space on search engines. That space is limited to 10 results on page one of Google.

When a tourist is dreaming about a holiday, planning a trip, making a booking or ready to write a review about an experience, they often turn to Google first. When visitors are away on their trip and they need to choose a restaurant or a new hotel, they will pull out their phones and search for appealing options.

If a tourism organisation isn’t investing in an SEO strategy, they are often missing out on countless opportunities to connect with potential new customers every day.

Search engine optimisation is an important growth channel for tourism providers, brands and destinations that want to reach potential new customers online. 

There are many tools available online to help with discovering new travel keywords for search engine optimisation, however, a keyword strategy and content plan is fundamental to the success of your SEO campaign. Depending on your specific niche in the tourism sector and your service offering, your audience, competitors and the volume of people searching for the keywords relating to your services, your keyword strategy will differ.

For example, if your organisation needs to focus on SEO for tour operators, the overarching SEO strategy will be very different to a strategy developed for a tourism destination. Different tactics will benefit a tour operator compared to those required to market a destination.

Speak with us about your objectives and we can help to guide you in the right direction. 

To compete with other tourism websites that offer similar services, it’s important to consider SEO as part of your digital marketing strategy. Unlike paid advertising channels, SEO will provide long term value in terms of generating ongoing enquiries, credibility and trustworthiness.

If you own a tourism business or run marketing campaigns for a destination, SEO is particularly important. This is due to:

  • Competitiveness online. There are millions of web pages offering information about tourism services, experiences and destinations on the internet. There are only 10 organic search results on page one of Google.
  • The volume of customers needed to deliver regular tours, experiences and activities are high and the need to fill these tours and activities doesn’t end. SEO is a powerful salesperson driving leads to your website 24/7.
  • There are five clear stages of the tourism customer journey that present opportunities to connect with, convert and delight travellers online. These stages are dreaming, planning, booking, experiencing and sharing. Search engines offer countless opportunities to connect with potential new customers at each stage of their customer journey if SEO is capitalised on effectively.
  • In many cases, 70-90% of people don’t click on Google Ads. They navigate towards the organic search listings that show up in the search results. If a website shows up in both the organic search results and in paid search ads, this builds trust and credibility from a consumer perspective. This strategy also maximises search engine real estate and diverts attention away from competitors. Our clients often see an increase in website traffic, enquiries and sales when combining an organic and paid search strategy.

If your organisation offers tours and experiences, an SEO strategy can help to attract more of the right customers and differentiate your business or destination from competitors.

Learn more about SEO for tour operators and destination marketing organisations on our blog.

The team at Mankind Digital have been delivering effective SEO strategies for clients since 2013. We are a travel and tourism marketing agency focused on building a brand’s overall perception online, in addition to rankings, enquiries and leads. SEO tactics that improve organic search results whilst also building trust and credibility in a brand are our bread and butter.

Our clients choose us for SEO because: 

  • We are a results-driven digital marketing agency specialised in tourism
  • Our team listens and we genuinely care about the success of our clients
  • We have experience and a proven track record in delivering SEO campaigns that work
  • We have developed a high level of trust and credibility for our clients through our SEO tactics

Read our client case studies and testimonials to learn more about the relationships we have with our current clients.

Client Case Studies & Testimonials

“A very thorough SEO strategy, which has made a huge difference for my website.”
“We now have lots more traffic and conversions on our website which we couldn't have done without Mankind! Thank you!”
“In the time we have been partnered with Mankind Digital our website and SEO performance has increased with enquiries beyond our expectations.”