Before the pandemic, the arrival numbers of Chinese tourists to Tanzania had been on the increase, with the destination receiving almost 32,000 visitors in 2018. In 2023 Tanzania targets to receive 45,000 tourists from the world’s second-largest economy and most populous nation.
What are the challenges of Chinese tourism in Tanzania in 2023?
- Lack of Government Support
Tanzanian authorities are not investing enough in Chinese social media. For example, at the end of February 2023, Tanzanian tourism doesn’t have a WeChat official account to promote the country on a governmental level.
- Local Business Passivity
Majority of local tourism agencies and hotels are not investing in developing websites in Mandarin, the growth of their Chinese social, and not hiring Mandarin-speaking staff. There is a real lack of information available online in China about Tanzanian tourism (lack of pictures, KOL videos, testimonials, and trips guides). As a result, it is a problem for Chinese travelers to find the right local agency and decent service quality in Tanzania.
- A Poor Reputation
Because of total low investments in Chinese tourism marketing from Tanzania, on the China Mainland, the country has a reputation as a budget destination. As a result, Tanazia receives mainly “low-end” large groups of Chinese tourists in most cases managed by Chinese agencies.
- Money Outflow
Large Chinese tourism agencies’ are keen to push local businesses for a minimum commission. So by large Tanzanian tourism business is working on wages for grand Chinese tour operators, while the rest of the high-income Chinese individuals are choosing Kenya to spend their holidays.
How the Tanzanian tourism business can attract Chinese tourists?
1. Optimized website in Mandarin
Your fantastic website is most likely severely hindered in China due to the Great Firewall. This implies that your prospective clients will be unable to upload and view the information you have created for them. Hence, in order to be visible to your potential guests, you must first optimize your website for the Chinese Internet.
Expert translation of your material into Mandarin is also necessary. It is not possible to use automatic translation. To begin with, Mandarin is a difficult language, so you will almost certainly misinterpret. Second, and most importantly, if you use automated translation providers like Google, your website may be blacklisted entirely in China.
2. SEO and SEM on Baidu
Baidu is the source of 81% of Chinese research. Before purchasing anything, Chinese shoppers will spend hours on Baidu researching your brand. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a method that works overtime to rank your official website in natural search results. If you have a high position in natural search results, you will be more visible, and Chinese customers will trust you.
Banner advertisements on Baidu or Pay Per Click will drive visitors to your website by raising your exposure and providing you more confidence in your prospects, who will see you better referenced on the web and be more inclined to trust your offer.
3. Online Reputation
Oh yes, your tours and services are excellent, and your website is already well-ranked on Baidu and functional in China. But, keep in mind that you are not the only one in your field, therefore you must persuade your prospective client to use your services. Furthermore, the Chinese Internet is riddled with scammers, and your Chinese potential consumers are wary. This implies they will look up and assess whatever they can about your organization before contacting you.
You can bet Chinese tourists will look for information about your products and services on the Chinese version of the internet. Any western sources are out of their grasp and irrelevant to them. As a result, you must invest in your online reputation in China. This covers press announcements and corporate references on Chinese blogs and forums. The more favorable information they can find about you, the more likely it is that they will contact you and choose your services and products.
4. Chinese payment methods
The payment system is another barrier for Chinese tourists who wish to spend money overseas. The majority of Chinese people do not have an international credit card and prefer to use their local payment methods while going abroad.
The Chinese payment method is still not accepted in the majority of businesses, hotels, and restaurants. If you want your Chinese customers to spend more, you should connect with Alipay and UnionPay to enable more of their transactions.
5. Chinese Social Media
Travel companies must have a presence on social media. Because Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, and even LinkedIn are blocked in China, advertising your business and services on local social media platforms like as Weibo, WeChat, and Red are required marketing efforts in order to reach more Chinese people.
Chinese visitors are likewise eager to share their positive and negative experiences. The better their experience with you, the more great vibrations they will spread about you on Chinese social media.
Chinese tourists like discounts. If you want to attract them effectively, don’t be afraid to offer them discounts and unique offers to pique their interest in your services or brand and entice them to make a purchase choice.
7. Travel Influencers
In China Influencers (KOLs) are present on every social network and are extremely popular among Chinese people. It is usually advantageous to be cited by Chinese KOLs, whether for beauty brands, clothing brands, or travel agency. It’s also a fantastic idea to provide free trips to large KOLs in exchange for postings on their vacations.
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