The customer comes first – that’s the mindset of today’s marketer.
And for the hospitality and travel industry, the constant battle to be at the forefront of personalization is at its peak.
In a mobile-first world, getting the right message across at the exact moment a person is researching travel plans is key.
For hotel brands to stay competitive with their OTA counterparts. So they must constantly innovate and adapt to the latest tech trends.
With Google Hotel Ads, marketers now have the ability to appear on the first page of a Google search increasing their customer base.
By understanding customer data and creating personalized retargeting strategies, hotel brands can finally get the leg up they were looking for.
But before that can happen, one must first understand the importance of Google Hotel Ads and how to incorporate it within campaigns.
With Google Hotel Ads metasearch platform, you can display your hotel rates on Google – across desktops, tablets, and mobile phones.
Most importantly, potential bookers can see your hotel rates in direct comparison to OTAs on their Google search page.
If your rates are attractive enough, they will book directly with you.
Now, you may ask how is this different from other metasearch platforms.
Here is the answer – around 4.5 billion searches are made on Google per day, accounting for around 77% of the world’s total search traffic.
Even though searches for hotels are just a small percentage of the total search volume, the number is still overwhelming.
Here are some important stats that would compel you to increase your hotel’s visibility on Google Ads –
- Google Hotel Ads, that distributes hotel prices in real-time, now represents 65% of hotel bookings coming from metasearch engines.
- In 2020, with a 150% growth compared to the 26% penetration in 2018, Google Hotel Ads has now emerged as the most profitable metasearch platform for hoteliers, above Trivago and others.
That’s how Google outsmarts other metasearch sites and that’s why you must increase your hotel visibility on Google Ads.
When travelers look for hotels on Google by keying in “Hotel in New York”, they will get to see a search result page provided by Google, which would include several hotels.
They need to use filters to set check-in dates, check-out dates, number of occupants, and most importantly the price range they prefer.
Plus, they also need to filter guest ratings and amenities.
Once, they are done with setting filters. Google will then redirect them to another page – a list of hotels matching their selection criteria.
Now here, if you have done your bidding properly. They will get to see your hotel’s name along with other available hotels in the same area.
If they find your pricing attractive, they will click on your hotel.
From here, they will be taken to a page where they can find your property’s description, images, amenities, services and guest reviews, etc.
Most importantly, they will also be able to compare your hotel prices that are mentioned on your brand website with OTAs.
Ultimately, if you offer them lower rates and extra amenities,
They will click on the website icon and will land on your website booking engine to book directly with you.
Increased visibility on Google Hotel Ads helps you to reach out to a wide range of audiences.
People will be able to find you while doing their initial round of research on Google.
And then, you stand a chance to generate a more direct booking, with less commission pay-out.
Google Hotel Ads Commission Program (GHACP) runs on the cost-per-acquisition (CPA) model.
Booking commission is somewhere between 10% to 15% to Google per every confirmed booking, which is much less when compared to OTA commission.
Moreover, the booking cancellation ratio through GHA is around 13%. This is far below compared to around 20% to 40% cancellations that happen with OTA booking.
All these add up to more room revenue and increased profitability.
First, you need to create your hotel’s account (free listing) on Google My Business page. Provide all the information that potential guests might look for – including room types, amenities, images, descriptions, etc.
This is important as GHA pulls all this information from your page to show them to your audience during their research phase.
Once, you complete the initial page set up, work on your Google reviews. Because reviews do influence a potential guest booking decision.
Then comes the challenge with maintaining rate parity. Do take a look at your competitors’ pricing and how your OTA partners are selling your rooms before you tweak your pricing.
Now, is that enough? No, clearly not. With GHA, you can go ahead and bid to get ranked in Google search.
But what about attracting guests to your website? What about a direct booking.
Because ultimately, you want to generate more bookings?
This can’t be done unless you have the right combination of hospitality technology solutions like a smart cloud-based Hotel PMS that comes integrated with a booking engine which is a certified Google Hotel Ads Commission Program partner.
QloAppps is a free hotel reservation system.