The Role of Destination in Hotels’ Online Communications: A Bottom-Up Approach
Among the various factors leading to the success of a hotel website, there is the provision of information related to a hotel’s destination context. Meanwhile, the ability to present destination information on a hotel’s website represents a great opportunity for destination discovery. In this context, outbound links (i.e., links that point to external resources/sites), favor the creation of a network within a destination. And yet, little research presently delves into the dynamics of outbound links among actors from the same destination. Therefore, the present paper seeks to explain how destination-related outbound links on websites of hotels within the same territory do identify the destination itself; and how linked content promotes said hotels’ overall regions. A Swiss destination is used as the subject of an exploratory case study, and a bottom-up, inductive approach is proposed to analyze the role of destinations in hotels’ online communication by examining the presence and nature of outbound links. Theoretical and practical implications of such an approach are then proposed.
KeywordsTourism destination Hotels’ online communications Outbound-links Web marketing Online network
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