Saturday, January 29, 2011

Hoseasons lose the [caravan] plot

I've covered this subject a number of times before - but it still amazes me how often organizations pay for advertising and then mess up the landing page ... and here is another example. 

South Shields is just down the road to me [actually, it is up the coast] and I often have a drive along the sea front there.  So when my sister was asked about caravan parks in the town, she got in touch with me. I knew the name of a site right on the sea front, so I put it into Google. And there at the top of the paid ads was this one for Hoseasons [note, it is not the caravan site I was looking for - so I suppose this is an advantage of buying ads on SERPS].

 When I clicked on that ad, I was taken to this page:
 You will note that not only was the page a 'home page' rather than the page for the South Shields camp site, but the page never downloaded fully. Furthermore, upon trying to use the page's search facility, I found that the county in which South Shields sits - Tyne and Wear - was not listed. 

So, being a switched-on online marketer, I went back to the SERP and copied the URL that was listed [hoseasons.co.uk/south_shields] and put it in the navigation box. And got this page:
Double whammy on this one; obviously there is the fact that the link is to a dead page, but check out the 404 message. Nothing along the lines of 'sorry, we have lost the page you are looking for, click here to go to the home page' - but the message refers to a 'resource'. What's that then? [see also 404 for the common people].

Oh yes, and as a footnote: Hoseasons don't have a holiday campsite in South Shields. Ho hum.

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