Search engine optimization of the site of a hotel or of a resort or any tourist facility for the Russian market is without a doubt one of the greatest opportunities in digital marketing today in order to receive direct bookings through the hotel website. Russian tourists are a highly appreciated target because they are notoriously one of the most large high spenders in the world, in fact, with the economic recovery in 2017, in the report, by UNWTO, Russians have soared to 8th place in the ranking of the tourists that spend the most in the world, in the ranking of the world top 10 spenders. It's also well known that most Russians prefer booking luxury hotels when abroad.
It's good to remember that to optimizing a site in the hospitality industry for the Russian market, it also means translating it and localizing it both to the Russian language and Russian culture.
The people who natively speak Russian language in from Russian Federation, are 150 millions, while there is an even greater audience of people who speak Russian, who are 260 millions and they live in different countries of the former Soviet Union and in several Russian communities, scattered in the world that are in the USA, Israel, etc. This last audience is called in digital marketing “Runet”, the greater web, spoken and used by Russian speaking people living worldwide.
Online marketing to receive hotel bookings from Russia
Optimize the hotel site for Yandex in the first place, the main Russian search engine
Unlike many countries in the world, the most popular search engine in the Russian Federation is Yandex, which currently holds more than 50% of the online search market. Yandex is also considered to be the main port of access online of the Russians because it offers many applications used by the Russians on a daily basis. Google.ru in the course of the years it has gained good market share and it's going to reach 50% of the market. Therefore it is important to start SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for Yandex in the first place, considering the priority of the features and algorithms of the Russian search engine.
Engage online with customers on VK and other social networks to interact with Russian travellers
Engage people starting from VK main Russian social network
The most used social network by the Russians is VK, which is almost a copy of the American rival, but that includes many more features, particularly appreciated by Russians and Russian speakers around the world. Engage users with photo, video, audio, and unique content. Facebook is also used in Russia, although is less popular and it's used by a more international audience. In Runet also are used local social networks MoiMir, Odnoklasniki, and Livejournal. Instagram is great opportunity in Russia for luxury products and services where image is everything.
Russian speaking staff and consultants
It's very important that all online marketing activities should be managed by a Russian speaker or a person who knows language and culture really well. Also it's important to provide customer support in Russian language by phone and through the hotel website.
Giulio Gargiullo Online Marketing Manager
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