Should You Pay for a B&B Directory Listing?

Bed and Breakfast directory listings are still an important part of B&B Internet marketing.  If you are already listing with the major B&B directories and with your local B&B association, then you are on the right track.  If your occupancy rates are still below expectations or you think you are spending too much on directories, then it might be time to figure out which directory listings to drop and perhaps replace with another bed and breakfast listing.

B&B Directory Performance: Get the Stats

The first step is to sign up for a free Google Analytics account. There are other analytics tools available for the B&B industry but you will have to pay for them. Google gives you all the basic info you need to make smart decisions. Once you have gathered a few months of traffic intelligence via analytics, you should consider dropping any directory listing that has not resulted in traffic or bookings. Keep those that pay for themselves. Consider adding paid directory listings that seem to rank well when you search for B&B’s in your area or if the B&B directory specializes in your marketing niche. Continuously evaluate your directory subscriptions each year to ensure that they are still producing guest stays.

B&B State and National Association Membership and Website link

Most experienced innkeepers know that belonging to a lodging association is a good idea.  It is important to maintain your local lodging association Website listing even if the link does not appear to result in a large amount of referral traffic to your site.  For many state and national associations, their main goal is to educate and advocate for the industry.  They are not necessarily a marketing organization.  Here are three good reasons to maintain membership in a lodging association beyond click referrals:

  1. Travelers may check the association Website to ensure that your property is a legitimate establishment even if they do not click on the link from the association Website to yours. 
  2. You can get a fast track to success through classes and sharing experiences with other members at conferences or online.
  3. Associations represent the interests of the larger lodging industry to local, state, and federal governments on difficult issues, such as short-term rentals and taxation.  A single property owner will not get the attention of the government on these issues.