Advertising on travel sites is easy. Good travel sites are great at aggregating a specific audience and suggesting products or services that audience may need or want. Most travel sites have their own system for advertising, and they charge rates based on impressions or clicks. With a little bit of research, anyone can advertise their products on a travel site.
Determine which sites you want to advertise on. For your convenience, listed under "resources" are the top ten online travel sites as ranked by toptenreviews.com. Choose the travel site you want based on the connection to the product you want to advertise. For instance, if you want to advertise vacation tours in Hawaii, try to find a travel site that books a lot of trips to Hawaii.
Contact the travel site about advertising rates. Most times, the travel site will include information about how to advertise on their site at the bottom of their home page. Some travel sites are part of a conglomerate of sites, in which case the umbrella company may give you the option to advertise across all their websites. Some advertising rates are based on impressions, and others are based on cost per click. Travelnotes, for example, charges $1.50 per 1,000 impressions for a banner at the top of their pages (as of July 2010). Sometimes the site might be affiliated with Google Adwords, in which case you would create an ad through Google’s system and specify which sites you want the ad to appear in.
Create a banner ad according to the specifications of the websites you're using. Most travel sites will tell you specifically the dimensions of the banner they support on their web page. The most common size is the 468x60 pixel banner that sits on top of many sites. You can create banners using software like Photoshop or online services like mybannermaker.com.
Track the results of your advertisement. The ad you have placed on the travel site will link back to your web page, and you need some way to keep track of the results to see if the campaign is effective. Google Analytics is free and offers a robust range of capabilities. Sign up with Google Analytics and embed their tracking code into the html code of your website.
Re-negotiate your ad rate based on the results of the campaign.
Make sure you weigh the cost of the ad with the revenue you will get from converting a sale. Generally the response rate from an advertising campaign results in one person out of 1,000 who visits your site making a purchase. If the margin of the product you’re selling is too low, it could break your budget.
- travel image by Oleg Leshchev from Fotolia.com