When our clients ask us what else they can be doing to improve their fishing charter website, we find ourselves recommending the same strategy over and over…

You built a website you think represents your fishing charter, guide service, or fishing lodge well enough to catch the attention of potential customers, and it likely follows this classic fishing charter website format: a fairly simple homepage, a trips & rates page, an about page, a gallery, a contact page, and maybe a couple of extras if you were feeling ambitious.

That’s all good – but when the average website visit is about 30 seconds, and most of your website is coming from phones, is your website really set up to educate first-time website visitors on why they should book with you over your competitors?

Does your fishing charter website pass the “vibe check”?

Every fishing charter, fly fishing guide service, fishing lodge – anyone offering paid fishing trips – needs to have a simple video that follows these guidelines:

    •  30 – 90 seconds in length – longer is ok, but get to the point early on.
    • Show your face! The video should look like someone is about to tell the website visitor something important. We’ve seen improved results from videos of just someone talking, versus highlight reel style of fishing with a voice overlay.
    • Introduce yourself, where you’re located, explain the trips you offer, and why people should book with you.
    • Quickly tell people what they can expect seasonally from you, or create seasonal videos to match the changes in your fishery.
    • Encourage people to reach out through your preferred method (call/text, on-site contact forms, online booking, etc.).

What impact does it make on lead generation?

This video acts as an elevator pitch for your fishing charter website, and allows people new to your business the chance to learn everything they need to about your operation to decide if they’re in the right place or not. This is the “vibe check” we mentioned at the start of the post. Someone can search “fishing charters in YOUR LOCATION” or “YOUR RIVER fly fishing guides”, and get all of the important details they need with one short video.

Sure, if they like what they see they can browse through the rest of your pages, but the video works to pre-qualify who’s reaching out to you. By the time they contact you, they know what you look like, they’ve heard your voice, got a feel for your personality, and know whether or not they want to spend their hard-earned money to spend hours on a fishing trip with you.

For the fishing charter websites and Google Ads accounts we manage for fishing guides here at The Click Hatch, we’re seeing anywhere from 60-80% of website traffic coming from phones. Why make people click through multiple pages to learn about your operation and risk losing people? Most Google users will do a search like “YOUR LOCATION fishing charters” and look at more than one business – getting different first impressions, price shopping, reading captain bios, etc. – make your fishing website stand out with a personal video that quickly builds a connection with potential clients.

Time and time again we’ll see a fishing charter website that was doing “ok” suddenly start converting website traffic into leads (calls, contact form submissions, actual bookings) at a much higher rate than before the video was added.

And the best part? It’s $FREE.99. All you need is a cell phone and to get past the fear of putting your face on camera – which is the most common pushback we hear on this one : )

Want to see these videos in action?

Here are a few examples of client fishing charter websites taking advantage of this strategy:

1.) Seasonally Specific

Journey On The Fly based near Pittsburgh, PA offers guided fly fishing trips for just about anything that bites as the seasons change. One of those seasons however, is an epic steelhead run out of Lake Erie during the cold months. In order to make his website more relevant to people looking for for steelhead trips, we set up a specific page all about steelhead and he recorded a 4-minute video which nails the personal aspect. The video image shows the head guide, you can feel his passion, and he walks you through everything you need to know about spending the day chasing chrome with him. If someone watches this entire video, there’s a really strong chance you’re booking that trip.


2.) All-Purpose – Edited Clips & Voice Overlay

Holston River Fishing Guides runs trips in the Boone area of North Carolina and parts of Virginia & Tennessee. Luckily, he had some high-quality video content he pieced together into this nice promotional video that acts as more of a brand awareness asset. This video is a vibe all by itself, and gives a great overview of the various water types and half, full, and multi-day options available through his fishing guide service.


3.) All-Purpose – Selfie-Style

Captain Bo Fishing Charters runs inshore & backcountry trips near Charleston, SC, out of Isle of Palms. We initially added this video to help bridge the gap between people picturing a classic “fishing charter” and what Bo offers with his smaller boats and more intimate lowcountry charters. Since we’re managing his Google Ads campaigns as well, we noticed a difference right away once people could hear from Bo himself – and he was able to properly set expectations for potential clients. Take note of the length and production quality here – Bo’s not trying to take home any Oscars, it was easy for him to create and add to his website and it’s straight to the point at a length of 51 seconds.


4.) River Reports – Selfie-Style

Berkshire Rivers Fly Fishing has a shorter guiding season in Western Massachusetts, with trout in the springtime, smallmouth in the summer, and trout & pike in the fall. People are always reaching out and asking about the fishing conditions and what’s been hot. So to help keep people up to date and to help new website visitors get a feel for what they can expect, they upload a new video every few weeks as the river conditions change and add it to their homepage. They’re also adding them to their YouTube channel to help build up content on there and grab exposure from additional audiences. Once again, selfie-style, casual, and coming in at about 2 minutes.