September 2014 Newsletter

Hi

Welcome to our September 2014 Great New Zealand / Net Action Tourism Web Marketing newsletter.

In this newsletter:

  • New .nz domain names – action required
  • Booking Site Commissions
  • Free WiFi
  • Google wants fully secure sites
  • Google Authorship ends

New .nz domain names – action required

In our August newsletter we provided information about the new .nz domain names that you should consider obtaining. It is important that you consider this and make an active decision about whether to get your .nz domain name after Sept 30 2014 and before March 30 2015.

Before 30th March 2015 you will have preferential rights to this unless there is a conflict with someone else. There will be a conflict resolution process. After 30 March anyone can purchase your .nz domain on a “first come first served basis”.

Read last month’s article at http://www.netaction.co.nz/august-2014-newsletter/#more-1208 or go to www.anyname.co.nz for more information. Or contact us at Net Action for assistance and advice.

Booking Site Commissions

We have recently been travelling and meeting with a large number of our Net Action clients. It was great to get excellent feedback about our services and issues facing website owners.

One recurring theme was the concern of website owners about how much commission they are paying to booking sites like Booking.com, Expedia and others.

We agree, but website owners also need to realise that the whole way that people get information and make bookings has changed greatly in the last 2 to 3 years. It is hard to compete with the impact and profile of these large sites – it is a case of use them or miss the business. Expect to see this increase further as sites like Tripadvisor try to maximise their return on investment further.

And consider that in the good ole days, you maybe paid a lot of money to be in printed media with limited distribution, or you paid travel agents and others to expose and sell your product. That is assuming you could actually convince them to do that for you.

So maybe this way is actually less effort for you? More bookings for less work perhaps? Whether it is or not, it is a reality for now.

The costs may just be reflected in a different part of your Profit and Loss statement. Commissions instead of advertising maybe? It would be interesting to compare those figures and the relative exposure and bookings achieved for your business.

Free WiFi

Feedback that we also got from clients confirms what we thought – free WIFI (within reasonable limits) sells rooms.

Properties are offering anything from 50mb to unlimited data via WiFi. Most are around 250-500mb per day. Even 50mb is adequate for emails and general browsing as long as lots of images are not being uploaded to sites like Facebook.

Our advice is to offer free WiFi. And remember to make it clear on your website that it is actually free and what the limits are. If this is not stated, people will probably go elsewhere rather than enquire about it from you. Too many sites we look at do not have this information.

There seems to be a relationship that the more expensive the room, the less chance that free Internet is offered. High daily rates charged by some higher end properties are certainly turning off customers.

Google wants fully secure sites

Google now wants all sites to be “secure” and is starting to give secure sites better ranking than non secure sites. They would like all sites to be converted to “secure”.

Secure sites use https:/ instead of http:/. Like your bank sites.

Perhaps a good idea to reduce site hacking (of which we have seen 4 cases lately) etc.

The down side is that it will require site changes and purchasing a security certificate for your site. Security certificates cost from around $5 per month to over $500 per year, depending on your hosting company. Just to make Mr Google happy.

According to this article Google are already using it as a minor part of their ranking algorithm and may increase the importance of it. How far they take this remains to be seen, it is still early days for this idea.

Google Authorship ends

Apparently Google have ended their experiment of “Authorship” – another change in the constantly changing landscape of what helps your website perform for you.

“Today John Mueller of Google Webmaster Tools announced in a Google+ post that Google will stop showing authorship results in Google Search, and will no longer be tracking data from content using rel=author markup.”

From the full article at

It’s Over: The Rise & Fall Of Google Authorship For Search Results

Google changes the rules on an almost daily basis. We can help you though the myriad of issues related to Google and improving or maintaining your Internet presence. That is what we at Net Action specialise in. We try to make it as easy as possible for you.

If you would like help to keep your site up to date in terms of ‘current best practice”, or deal with any other Internet issues for you, please contact us.

Best regards

Ron, Judie, Sue & the team at
Net Action Ltd and Great New Zealand