Breaking Down a Hotel Search on Google in 2013 (Part II)
Remember when your hotel web strategy was all about keyword optimization. Ah, those were the days. Now you’ve got innumerable social media outlets to keep up with, review sites out the wazoo, and Google. It takes a travel guide just to figure out what’s happening on a Google hotel search page these days. So let’s do it—just a basic breakdown in case you’ve been wondering what happened to your trusty search results.
- Adwords has a new(ish) friend called Promoted Hotels (that sponsored area below the shaded Adwords results). Promoted Hotels is paid advertising through Google Hotel Finder. (I’ll talk more about Google Hotel Finder in Part IV; today we’re just sizing up the page.)
- Next, expect around two or three organic returns—more often than not big review sites and OTAS—followed by Google local listings (see below). Usually there are seven of these along with floating map on the right-hand side that covers some amount of Adwords listings. Recently, I’ve been seeing a new floating, horizontal Local bar at the top of some search pages with hotel images. This new format makes more room for organic returns. Perhaps the next wave in Google Local.
- Roll over a Local listing for additional information about the property. If you were to click on one of these, you’d be taken directly to the hotel’s website; whereas, if you were to click on one of the Promoted Hotel Ads, you’d be taken into Google Hotel Finder.
If you make it any further down the page, there will be several more organic search results. For a generic search like “Paris hotel,” there are really only a total of nine organic search results. In 2013, a Google hotel search yields fewer organic results, more paid space, and more Local real estate. More Google. I’m guessing this is the wave of the future.
Stay tuned for our next installment: Google+.