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For a pub, bar or nightclub, it is incredibly important to get the attention of new customers in every way possible.

The easiest and most beneficial way to do this is through increasing the number of leads on your website. By utilising SEO throughout your site, you’ll be giving yourself the best chance in doing this.

As hospitality SEO experts, we have created this guide for pubs, bars and nightclubs to demonstrate the benefits of SEO, how you can start to apply these to your site, and ultimately how to increase footfall on your premises.

What is SEO?

SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, is the term used for the process of improving how visible your site is to potential guests and visitors. There are many ways to approach this, but the main is to make sure you’ve tactically scattered keywords throughout your content.

If you’re using all the necessary keywords, when a potential visitor is looking for a location it’s likely your site will come up. Which is exactly what SEO aims to achieve, to ensure you’re the one getting those all-important customers.

Why is SEO important for your website?

Searching for “Pub/Nightclub/Bar in…” no matter your location will return with thousands of search results. This can be really overwhelming for the user, so they’ll no doubt go with the first option, or at least one on the first page.

So this is where SEO becomes incredibly handy. Essentially it’s your chance in getting one jump ahead of all your competitors to make sure you’re the option they decide on.

Many search engines, especially Google, use a number of factors to rank results when certain words are searched. If you’re looking at getting more clicks, then you need to work on where you appear on those rankings.

seo services cornwall

According to research from Backlinko, the #1 result on Google has an average CTR (click-through-rate) of 31.7%. Which is over 10x more visited than search results which appear at the bottom of the first page.

If your website doesn’t make it to the first page of search results, it’s reported that only 11.9% of users click through to the second page of results. Which isn’t what we aim for. We want to start climbing those rankings.

SEO helps your position on these rankings, boosting you where appropriate. If you’re doing all the right things then you may find your establishment landing on this top spot. Or at least the first four positions, where research has discovered the most clicks land.

Local SEO for Pubs, Bars and Nightclubs

Local SEO is a business’s best friend. It’s especially relevant to your establishment, making sure that your website appears in searches related to the local area.

To enhance your local SEO, consider using these keywords:

  • Pub/Bar/Nightclub near *location*
  • Recommended Pub/Bar/Nightclub near me
  • Themed pub/bar/nightclub in *location*
  • Pub/Bar/Nightclub walking distance to *location*
  • Fun night out in *location*

By scattering these keywords throughout your website, you’re optimizing your chances of appearing in these searches and climbing those pesky search engine rankings already.

Another important aspect to local SEO is marking your company on Google Maps using a Google My Business Profile.

If you keep this page up-to-date with event information, reviews, pictures, it reinforces the positive energy your establishment radiates. It’ll show that you’re passionate and involved with what you do and people will more than likely visit.

Another place you’ll want to be listed is Tripadvisor, which often appears no.1 for searches such as ‘Best pubs/bars/nightclubs in [location]’

Top Tips for Pubs, Bars and Nightclub SEO

We’ve put together a list of our top 5 SEO tips and tricks for pubs, bars and nightclubs so you can start making changes today.

1. Targeting keywords

It is incredibly important to have a deep understanding of appropriate keywords to implement across your site. This will be the easiest first step to take on your site, since Google will rank your website according to the keywords they find embedded.

As mentioned earlier, location is a huge aspect to keyword distribution, and for a pub, bar or nightclub is entirely relevant to utilise across your website. It’s a great strategy to apply to your site immediately.

If you’re stuck on thinking about which keywords would be appropriate to apply to your website, try looking at it from the perspective of a browser. If you were looking for a place to have a drink or party what would you search for? This technique may help reveal keywords you’d have missed otherwise.

Specialist tools like Google Keyword Planner as well as competitor analysis are really helpful when searching for keywords. But if you’re not using an SEO agency these tools may not be accessible to you.

Here’s a list of potential keywords which you may find appropriate to use:

  • Dog friendly pubs
  • Beer gardens near me
  • Bar showing *sports event*
  • Quality pub lunch
  • Good night out in *location*
  • Nightclub with DJ
  • Karaoke Bar

These key terms may already be the USP (unique selling point) of your establishment. If that is the case, you’re probably already posting about them. However if you’re not, try highlighting them across your posts and content on your site. Additionally try adding them to meta titles and descriptions on your website (which we will mention a bit later on.)

2. Add Keywords to your Site Meta Info and Page Content

SEO can seem incredibly confusing for owners/promotors of bars, pubs and nightclubs. Keyword research which you’ve just completed can be very overwhelming and reveal just how many search terms you have to be aware of.

Start small, which is our best advice for approaching SEO. By including a handful of keywords across your site, you’ll begin to notice an increase in traction. Over time, these steps will lead to you becoming more comfortable with SEO.

Another beneficial place to begin your SEO journey is through changing page titles and meta descriptions.

  • The page title is what appears first when customers search for your service or website.
  • The meta description is the 1-2 lines that appear underneath the search results. This could be the selling point where you receive clicks over your competitors.
  • Making sure these elements are unique and include keywords where they can give potential visitors an idea of what to expect. It also helps optimize the page for that specific term.

    When it comes to editing meta information and page titles you may need access to your website’s CMS (content management system).

    Otherwise the information can be edited manually in HTML. Google Webmasters support has some incredible useful tips for editing page titles, meta descriptions and more to ensure optimal site visibility.

    3. Make sure Technical SEO is on Point

    Targeting keywords is just one element to the grand scheme of SEO. To make sure your website is being visited time and time again by potential guests, you also need to make sure your technical SEO is on point.

    Technical SEO references the optimisation of the infrastructure of your site. It needs to be fast, easy to navigate and user-friendly for anyone who is looking at it.

    Technical SEO manages the underlying structure of your website, including:

    • URL Structure
    • Sitemaps
    • Navigation
    • Page loading speeds
    • Broken links (404s)
    • Site localisation
    • Image alt tags
    • And many more vital elements!

    If you want to boost your chances of attracting all-important organic traffic generated by search engines, you need to implement technical SEO. Alongside regular SEO benefits, this will help you create a fast, usable website.

    There are a lot of free SEO audit tools but the results may be hard to understand if you’re not an SEO specialist. Consider a paid SEO audit as a great starting point to uncover and solve any technical issues you’re facing on your site.

    4. Create Relevant, Useful Content

    If you’re looking for that extra help, consider adding some original content, like a blog, on your website.

    This original content will help enrich the user experience on your website, and can cover a huge range of things. Original content can be anything from visitor reviews, photographs, an up-to-date social media feed, or a relevant events list for what to look forward to.

    This content will more than likely be less focused on sales, but will encourage visitors to keep visiting your website. In turn, this will probably result in more visitors and open discussion about your website.

    It’s important to think about your broader audience when creating content for your website. Adding some well-written content such as signature cocktail recipes for a night in will be a valuable asset to your website.

    Here are some blog ideas for pubs, bars and nightclubs:

    • Cocktail recipes for a night in
    • Outfit lookbooks for anyone struggling with what to wear
    • Good places to go for a hangover brunch/meal for the morning after
    • Mocktail menu ideas for kids birthdays
    • How to replicate a pub lunch at home

    This content also provides the opportunity to include another set of keywords (known as long-tail keywords) and boosts your SEO.

    For a pub or bar, adding a ‘call to action’ button so people can book now is a worthy feature to include on your website. This could be the thing that persuades visitors of your website to book with you over anyone else.

    5. Scale your SEO with link building

    If you’ve applied our first few tips then you may be searching for some more advanced SEO.

    If you find it hard to stand out against the competition due to your location being incredibly saturated with similar businesses then this final point may be a savior.

    One of the most overlooked factors with SEO, yet something that Google and similar search engines look for, is the quality of links which point back to your website. 

    However, the quantity of these links just isn’t enough to sway these rankings. Google and other search engines will look for the quality of these links, so it’s important to gain the trust of authoritative websites when you’re link building. This will also help increase the trust of potential visitors.

    backlinks SEO

    The best way to build long term links is through a targeted content marketing strategy. Reaching out to websites and offering to publish a recipe, or an appropriate blog post corresponding to your industry, in exchange for a link to your own website.

    For pubs, bars and nightclubs, you may not have a huge amount of content on a blog of your own – but there are still a number of approaches you can use to gain these links.

    • Approach similar sites in your industry. For example, collaborate on an event and write a preview, review, or in depth post about what to expect. This can be published across several sites and link back to yours if you host the event.
    • Never underestimate the power of positive reviews. Your visitors are your best friends when it comes to free advertisement.
    • Look for frequently visited pubs or bars in your local area and see if you can promote one another. If you live in a student populated town, try hosting a themed pub crawl across several locations.
    • A final tried and trusted method is the use of digital PR. Do something for returning customers like hosting a big event. Do something unexpected and fun, it’ll help boost your name in the local community.

    How About PPC For Pubs, Bars and Nightclubs?

    Don’t expect to see a huge difference overnight once you start applying SEO to your website. The process may take a few months. But if you’re looking for an instant difference, PPC (pay-per-click) or Google Adwords can give you some instant traffic from certain keywords.

    The first 3-4 results on Google are paid advertisements. They’re often quite prominent in ranking in traffic due to how early they appear on the page, so can attract plenty of attention for your site.

    But, you’ll need to pay Google for the click. As well as paying a PPC specialist for the cost of setting up the advert.

    Google have made it easier for ads to be set up by individuals, however you can end up spending money on irrelevant keywords if you’re not sure how to use this feature.

    It may well end up costing you more than getting the help of a professional!

    google adwords

    Confused by SEO for Pubs, Bars and Nightclubs? Search Hog Can Help

    If you’re still feeling overwhelmed and confused by setting up SEO for your website, don’t be disheartened. We hope this guide has been of some help, but if you’re more confused then when you started an SEO consultant could be your best option.

    If you would like any help with the SEO strategy for your pubs, bar or nightclub then please get in touch with Search Hog today. We can help improve your website visibility and attract more visitors looking for a good time!


    SEO Blogger at Search Hog

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