SEO Tips for Wedding Venues
Search Engine Optimisation or SEO, is about helping your website and wedding venue to be found easily within search engines and improving your rankings, preliminary on Google with it being the most used search engine.
Optimising your website for search engines should be a key part of your marketing strategy and any website developments or redesigns that may be done in the future.
Local SEO Tips for Wedding Venues
If you search your venue name you want to be the first link and result in Google, if you are a barn venue located near Birmingham and search for ‘wedding venues in Birmingham’ then ideally you want to show as one of the top results, the same if you search ‘barn wedding venues west midlands’. These are specific terms that potential couples are using to find a wedding venue in your venues location making them your target audience.
To improve your rankings and how high you show on Google and for different terms, there are a number of things that you should look at. Some will help overall and others such as keywords will help rank for specific keywords and searches. So lets begin.
Optimising for Mobile
With more and more online searches made via a phone it is important that your website looks and works well on mobile and tablet devices as well as on desktop.
This is important not only for user experience but also as it is a key ranking factor for Google. If your website is not optimised for mobile users then it is likely that you are not ranking as high as you could be, and this is hurting your visibility.
When viewing your website on your phone, is it easy to use and navigate? How easy is it to use the menu, are any of the links or buttons too close together making you accidentally press the wrong one with your finger? Is the text easy to read on your phone, do the images fit in the display area, are there clear call to actions making it obvious where to click to make an enquiry?
Google have there own mobile-friendly test site here, just enter your website URL and it will advise on any issues you have and recommend improvements that could be made.
Action: Check your website is optimised for mobile and make sure it is easy to use, are buttons and links easy to click, is the text clear to read or should it be larger? This isn’t just about SEO, this is about making it easy for potential couples to get in touch and have a good experience using your site.
How long do you give a website to load? The chances are if it doesn’t look like it is loading then you click back and move onto another site. As part of the user experience you want your site to load quickly.
With a wedding venue site you will have lots of images showing off different areas of your venue, this is great, however it is important these are optimised and load quickly on your site. Make sure your images are only as big as they need to be and optimised for web.
Setting your website to lazy load images is a great way to speed up image heavy websites, photos are only loaded as they are viewed on your website, so if you are scroll down they will then be loaded as displayed.
If you use WordPress for your website you can also get caching plugins which help to imrpove your site speed by making it quicker to load.
Action: Review your site speed using the Google page speed test. Here you will also get tips and advice on areas you can improve to make it quicker.
Make sure you have Google analytics installed on your website so you can track not only where users are finding your website, such as from social media, online directories or mainly search engines, but also if they are viewing on a desktop or Phone.
Optimise your Images
As mentioned about images in our site speed section, there are also others things you can do to your images to ensure they are better optimised for search engines. As well as text searches on Google, image searches is also hugely popular so it is also good to optimise your images for this to.
Steps to do this include optimising your image file names and the alt tag on your website. For example instead of a file name of IMGBNHTG_12052019_1020.jpg how about venue-name-birmingham-barn.jpg. With an alt tag of ‘Birmingham barn wedding venue’ this is better optimised for google searches. Google doesn’t know what your image is of, at the moment it is not clever enough to know, so you need to tell it and by letting it know via the file name and alt tag you can describe the image.
Wedding venue searches are about images, and visuals are very important, so it is important to make sure you maximise and opitmise your images for image search.
Action: Search for your venue name in Google images, do your images show? Review your website and the images your have on there, is there an alt tag added and does it describe the image?
Local SEO & Keywords
As mentioned in our earlier example as a wedding venue near Birmingham you want to ensure you show for search terms around this. To help ensure you show for these you want to ensure you have text on your website that mentions this, for example introductory text that says ‘Unique Barn Wedding Venue in Birmingham’.
When reviewing your content also check your title and meta descriptions for your pages. Make sure these are optimised and reflect on the page content.
Think about your venue and what it’s key selling points are, all inclusive packages, accommodation on site, exclusive use, yours for the whole weekend. Make sure this is convade on your website clearly.
SEO Keywords for Wedding Venues
Here is an example of keywords you could target if you were a Birmingham based Barn wedding venue.
- Birmingham wedding venues
- Wedding venues in the West Midlands
- Wedding venues near Birmingham
- West Midlands wedding reception venue
- Wedding venue with accommodation in the West Midlands
- All-inclusive wedding venues Midlands
- Budget Wedding venues
Based on some of these you can tailor a list of keywords for your wedding venue and audit your website copy. It is important to consider intent and your target audience, if you are a large country house that offers all inclusive packages, then it is unlikely you would want to be targeting ‘budget wedding venues’ as a keyword search.
It is also important to think about intent, the search term ‘wedding venue table ideas’ is likely to be by someone who has booked their venue and looking for some inspiration, where as someone searching ‘wedding venues in my area’ is actually looking to book a venue. This does not mean you should ignore search terms for none venue bookings, these types of queries are great for blog posts and help add new fresh content to your site.
Action: Review your website copy from a user and search engine point of view. You want it to be clear and to make sense, ensure it includes keywords you wish to target, venue location, style and name while being written for the user.
If you search for your business name on Google does it appear on the right hand side, it should display a map showing your location, business name, contact number, link to your website as well as images.
This is free to do and can be added via Google Business here. Make sure you include ‘wedding venue’ as the main category
Ensure you are added and all the information is up to date, this is great for users who search for your venue and can easily see your contact information.
Action: Check you are added to Google Business by searching your business name and ensure the information is correct. If you do not show then add your venue here.
Are you using social media as part of your marketing? It is important to not only have these set up but that you are using them. Having these helps your venue to be found and it also shows some trust to Google that you are a real business whilst providing a link back to your website.
Action: Read our guide on using social media to help promote your wedding venue here.
High Quality Content
Google likes fresh content, it likes a website that is maintained and provides the user what they need. A blog is a great way to share new content, this can be new features and areas at your wedding venue, upcoming open days or wedding fairs, or perhaps events or introductions to new staff members.
If you have a wedding planner then this is a great opportunity to produce articles on helpful tips and advice for couples planning their wedding, sharing weddings that took place at your venue and guides to food and catering you offer.
Action: Do you have a blog and is it used? Keep your website fresh and add new content and articles that are useful. This is a chance to be personable and connect with your audience and potential clients.
Featuring on Wedding Directories
As well as ensuring your website is optimised, it is good to ensure you get the best out of wedding directories you may feature on, and they are also up to date. Venue directories are a good way to also help boast your website as many will link back to you, depending on your website some directories may also out rank your website for certain search terms so it is good to ensure these are all up to date.
As you review your wedding venue and look to improve it, this is the same for your website. Make sure it is the best it can be and also it is included as a key part of your marketing strategy. It does’t matter how your venue is found, be it google, printed ad, or a wedding venue directory site, many couples will first go to your website before getting in touch.
Action: Don’t just review your website, ensure all areas of your online presence are covered, from social media to wedding directories.
Local searches are a key part of online marketing and it is important to ensure you are showing and can easily be found. SEO can generate extra leads and a well-optimised website will make it more likely that you can convert targeted traffic into leads for your business.