The Corner Office: Searching for Results?
• What SEO strategies do you employ?
Palmer: Actually, Fodor’s does pretty well on the SEO front. Type “Rome restaurants” or “travel guides” into Google, and we’re one of the top results. There are categories and places where we don’t rank as well, and we’re looking closely at how we can improve those results through keyword targeting as well as our editorial approach. … SEO requires more straightforward language than perhaps we’ve been used to using, so we’re looking at the types of words consumers use to search and integrating those into our content. For example, no one searches for “lodging,” they search for “hotels.”
• What is your No. 1 goal for SEO?
Palmer: Most of Fodors.com’s revenue comes through advertising, so we’re looking to maximize our traffic—both page views and unique users. SEO allows us to maximize traffic with minimum investment. … I think we see SEO as just one tool of many, and if we do the right things, we can bring people to our site.
• What advice can you give other publishers who are seeking SEO guidance?
Palmer: Work with a consultant to take an objective look at your site, and do a site audit. Also note that SEO is an ongoing process … . It’s not the type of project where you say, “We did it, and we’re done.” It requires maintenance.
Carolyn Huckabay is arts editor and copy chief at the Philadelphia City Paper. She also was a copy editor and book critic for The Free Lance-Star, a daily newspaper in Fredericksburg, Va.