WordPress is far the most popular content management system (CMS) in the world. It powers one in three websites on the internet.
Despite being popular, WordPress offers the basics for you to create and run a travel website.
For that reason, you should add plugins to turn it into a real leads generator and online booking machine.
What are plugins?
In short, plugins are additional code lines that you can add to your WordPress website, in order to give it extra powers.
For example, improving the load speed, ranking higher on Google, making it more appealing to visitors and many other benefits.
But don’t worry, no coding is required to add plugins to your website. Most of them you can install without leaving the WordPress interface.
Plugins are so important to WordPress websites, that you can find more than 55,000 of them in the WordPress Plugin Directory, and at least a thousand more on third-party websites.
Which plugins should I add to my travel website?
Now that you are familiar with WordPress plugins, time to pick the ones that will give an extra boost to your online bookings.
I am talking about increasing your website traffic and improving the user experience.
To help you with that, we have listed the best plugins that we believe every tour operator should have on their website.
1. WP Rocket
Does your website have a slow loading speed?
If your answer was ‘yes’, I have the right solution for you. WP Rocket is a powerful caching plugin that speeds up your WordPress website right upon activation.
Caching is a way of storing data in order to provide that data even faster the next time it is requested by a user.
WP Rocket caches your pages by creating static HTML files and making them easily available for future visitors.
Because of the increased site speed, you’ll see a boost in your site’s search engine rankings, and perhaps even a boost in conversion rates.
The only minus is that this premium plugin costs $49 for an annual license per site.
2. Yoast SEO
Search engine optimization is a complex matter. Google, Bing, Yahoo… all of them have ranking criteria that are constantly changing.
To help you being SEO compliant without much effort, we recommend you to use Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress.
It is simply the most popular plugin for this category in the WordPress directory. The reason is simple, it is a comprehensive solution with all must-need tools for SEO.
Yoast SEO comes with a real-time report that helps you write SEO-friendly content optimized for the desired keyword.
You can also optimize meta descriptions, titles, page URLs and hide unwanted pages from search engines.
Its free version is enough for most tour operators, but if you want more you can pay $89 per year to have extra functions.
If you are dealing with international tourists, WPML is probably the most important plugin on this list for you.
Through it, you can basically translate your website content to any language. It also adds a switcher to your website to make it easier for visitors to select the desired language.
WPML is compatible with most themes and plugins available for WordPress. Another advantage of using this plugin is to fully optimize your travel website for SEO in multiple languages.
The basic version of WPML costs $29 per year, but it covers only blogs. For tour operators, we recommend the complete solution that costs $79 per year.
Travelers are often impatient and expect that customer support answers their inquiries in no time. Don’t worry, LiveChat will help you with that.
As the name suggests, this is a live chat tool that can be quickly installed into your WordPress website.
LiveChat offers a great variety of customizations and also comes with a mobile app for you to provide real-time support to your customers.
In addition to human interaction, you can improve the user experience and response time by using AI to chat with your potential customers.
LiveChat will cost you $19 per month, which is a great deal considering all its benefits.
5. WP Forms
If your budget is tight to afford a chat solution, you can add a form to capture leads and be in touch with your customers.
WP Forms is a drag & drop form builder that allows you to create contact forms, email subscription forms, survey forms, and any other type of form needed with just a few clicks.
Due to its ease of use and many integrations available, it is a very popular form builder.
Tour operators can use this plugin to start building their email lists and kick off an email marketing campaign.
WP Forms has a free plan and a premium version depending on your needs.
All the previous plugins work on the technical aspects of your website. To have a real improvement on your sales strategy, you will need a plugin like MonsterInsights.
This data tracking tool easily connects your website with Google Analytics, giving you the necessary data to improve your website, content, user experience and online campaigns.
Track conversions, number of visitors, bounce rate and other important metrics for your business straight from your WordPress dashboard.
This plugin has a free version but also a paid version that offers advanced features.
Boost your results with a booking button
Having a fast, Google-friendly and easy-to-navigate website is half-way to boost your online sales. What you are missing is a booking button to convert web visitors into paying customers.
If you don’t have an online booking software yet, we invite you to meet Orioly for tour operators.
With it, you can easily add a booking button to your WordPress website and truly turn it into a sales machine for your business.
It also has an OTA channel manager, a resource manager, agent accounts and many other features designed to help tour operators grow their business online and offline.