I admit that I have not gone through all 100 top U.S. airports from a paid search perspective.
But what I can say is that most of you are missing a big opportunity for traffic in the search engines. Most airports are doing no paid search.
This is a big opportunity for a couple reasons.
You want to understand that you are fighting for real estate on Google. The more real estate you have the more likely it is that people will click on your listing.
This is a great example of Atlanta owning the majority of the real estate on Google when you search for “Atlanta airport.”
There are 3 paid listings above atlanta-airport.com plus all the side listings. The likelihood increases significantly that the other sites will get clicked on.
Parking is a big opportunity for paid search.
Look at this search result for “rental cars at JFK.”
The primary JFK website is nowhere to be found.
I’d also encourage you to take a look at the search results at Bing.com. These are a little more wild. Take a look at the results for “Las Vegas airport”
The Enterprise ad is above the McCarran primary site. Plus there are a series of ads on the right trying to get people to book a variety of things on their sites. The risk of losing the visitor is even greater here.
Paid search is a great opportunity for pulling traffic away from where people might have actually intended to go. I strongly encourage you to not let that happen.
I also encourage you to bid on phrases for things like “flights to…”
You can use geo-targeted paid search to get these searchers to your site.
Think of paid search for what it is: an advertisement space for your targeted audience.
You wouldn’t think twice to buy an ad in the local newspaper or TV station. But I think often people are reluctant to do the same in a search engine. These are some of the most qualified people you will ever be able to show an ad. You definitely don’t want to lose them at the very moment they are about to click on your site.
If someone is bidding on traffic you would like to have come to your site I would strongly encourage you to engage with these advertisers. Get in there. Make sure you get the traffic that is yours.
If you would like to test paid search in Google AdWords I have $100 coupons. Just click here to contact me and let me know you are interested in giving paid search a try. I’ll gladly hook you up.