Google Continues To Be Hotelier’s Best Friend
By Max Starkov
Friday, 17th November 2023

Google now controls 91%+ global search engine market share (Hootsuite), but there are two specific to hospitality developments worth mentioning.

1. Google now “owns” the travel consumer and has become the “shepherd of the digital customer journey” by positioning itself at and making money in the form of referral, CPC, CPM, CPA and CPS fees from each of the five phases of the Digital Customer Journey: Dreaming, Planning, Booking, Experiencing and Sharing Phases.

2. Google has become a fully integrated advertising ecosystem, where all advertising formats are intertwined and work in concert. User engagements in the upper funnel (SEO, content marketing, YouTube TrueView, Gmail Ads, etc.) influences conversions in the lower funnel (Google Ads, Google Hotel Ads, Google Display Network, RLSA, Customer Match, etc.), and a campaign in one advertising format directly influences the results from all other formats.

So what should smart hotel marketers do with their limited budgets?

  • Overhaul your website SEO: first-page position on Google’s search results generates 144% more clicks than 2nd page.

    Position #1 generates 30.2% of the clicks. Optimize your website for on-page SEO, technical SEO and use content marketing to increase backlinks to your website.
  • Improve your mobile website download speeds to below 2.5 seconds. Google officially completed its switch to mobile-first indexing, which means it now prioritizes mobile versions of sites when crawling and indexing.
  • Invest in content marketing - the best “marketing message amplifier”
  • Update your Google Business Profile (GBP)
  • Join the free Google Hotel Ads (GHA) listings.
  • Utilize Google’s hotel advertising tool, Performance Max, which enables hotels to create digital ads in multiple formats to reach travelers across six of its ad channels, namely YouTube, Display, Search, Discover, Gmail and Maps.
  • Google Ads (GA): Launch hotel-branded keyword terms GA campaign to target past guests.
  • Google Display Network (GDN): Launch a GDN Retargeting campaign to target users who have visited your website.

Max Starkov
Hospitality & Online Travel Tech Consultant & Strategist

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