Friday, December 08, 2006

Innkeeper Directory Clickthru Statistics

While I know that some people don't like to share their clickthru statistics, I have put this post here so others that want to can post some of their directory statistics so others can compare their experiences.

Please indicate where in the country you are (gives an indication of seasonality); the date the statistics represent (e.g., Nov 2006; Jan-Mar 2006; Jan-Dec 2006); and only if you want, the level of your listing (e.g., Silver level; Level III).

2 comments:

Speedwell Forge B&B said...

Received from Speedwell Forge B&B:

Referrer Click-thrus and Annual cost
google[cpc] 194 No annual fee, average $0.46 per click
bedandbreakfast.com 186 $249 for silver, upgraded to gold for free
bbonline.com 61 $239 for level 2 - 10% PAII discount
bnbfinder.com 59 $300 for level 1
lanierbb.com 16 $99 + $40 for link + featured listing with linkback
charmingcountryinns.com 15 $70 for bronze + featured listing with linkback
discoverourtown.com 15 Don't remember, maybe $100
iloveinns.com 6 $150 for gold + featured listing with linkback
preservationdirectory.com 6 $85 for text-only listing
inns.com [cpc] 37 No annual fee, average $.14 per click
stateparks.com 4 $48/year to be 'featured' (text only)
bnbstar.com 3 $99 for platinum (special, just joined)
innsite.com 3 Free link
stashtea.com 2 Free link with buy one, get one free offer
en.wikipedia.org 2 Wrote my own wiki article on our property :-)

purpleroofs.com 2 Free link
classifieds1000.com 1 Free link
services.worldweb.com 1 Free link
inntravels.com 1 $85/year (just joined so data NOT representative)
Total 583 $2,626

Averaging the cost-per-click and sorting from low to high (not including free listings):
Referrer Cost per click
bedandbreakfast.com $0.11
inns.com [cpc] $0.14
bbonline.com $0.29
charmingcountryinns.com $0.39
bnbfinder.com $0.42
google[cpc] $0.46
discoverourtown.com $0.56
lanierbb.com $0.72
stateparks.com $1.00
preservationdirectory.com $1.18
iloveinns.com $2.08

Of course, click-thrus are not reservations. (And, in fact, those directories that let the user click directly to Webervations will get under-counted because I don't see that traffic here.) Unfortunately, my attempts to track referrals to reservations has been stymied by Google Analytics, which for some reason refuses to record any "conversions" at all. I'm still working on that, but in the meantime I can generalize: In November we made 44 reservations on 2,325 click-thrus, so our conversion rate is 1.9%. (2% seems to be industry average.) Gross for the month was about $11,000, so if marketing is 10% of revenue, then each click was worth 47 cents ($1,100 marketing dollars/2,325 clicks). Anyone costing me more than that is on the bubble.

Hopefully by next month I'll have the Google issue fixed and be able to show exactly how much revenue each channel brought me, and not have to worry about click-thrus at all.

My next steps:
- List on ibbp.com and theinnkeeper.com; possibly upgrade listing on bbonline.com
- I think I'm done with Google pay-per-click, as I haven't seen a single booking after two months and they are fully 40% of my marketing costs.
- Obviously iloveinns.com is on the bubble, though I may keep them just because I like having a logo on my web site that says "Member, American Historic Inns" even though they have nothing to do with historic inns. :-)
- And of course we continue to partner with local businesses to drive traffic. In fact, the above represents only 25% of my traffic. 28% is direct (usually people who have bookmarked us), 15% is search engine, and 23% is local referrals. (Don't ask me what the other 9% is; I have no idea.)

-Gregg

--
Speedwell Forge B&B
www.speedwellforge.com

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Sorry for offtopic