This is mostly due to the continuous changes Google has made to their search results, with the introduction of the Carousel, more prominent PPC, the Map and Keyword Ads that relegate organic results ‘below the fold’. These changes have re-routed organic traffic to other channels; specifically paid.
Google’s changes are a cause of, and response to how people engage, search, and book, and they have increasingly over the last 3 years focussed on the paid aspect of their platform – and also expanded their attention more towards mobile, where over 28% of users book in North America, and over 50% in Asia.
Whilst in this new paid focussed landscape it is difficult to compete with the OTAs and large chains with incomparable budgets, Google’s data-centric approach does have some upsides, as it does provide valuable data back to all their advertisers for more targeted, effective, and efficient ad spend.
Google’s tools provide you more specific data insights on your targets and their behaviour, so you can more precisely tailor your campaigns to your target audience.
Whilst CPC’s are going up across all industries, more efficient spend, and seizing the opportunities that are available should be at the top of the priority list.
Across both Google, and other platforms, within this ‘new frontier’, hotels need re-focus their efforts and align their marketing activities where they can show results.
There are opportunities for hotels to maximize efforts in this landscape that all hoteliers should be focussing on:
- Take advantage of Audience Targeting – with CPC’s going up across the board, utilising the tools and data at hand for more bang for your buck isn’t something you can afford to not be optimised. In-Marketing Google Targeting, RLSA and Customer Match are essential tools to help widen your audience, whilst at the same time targeting users whose profile and behaviour indicates purchase patterns
- Utilising new tools, such as AdWord Next new features like Promotion Extensions, where hotels can highlight specific USPs in their offers, like Member’s Only Rates, and Private Sales where they can distinguish from other channels and more effectively demonstrate value
- Allocating spend to channels like Metasearch that even the playing field, where brands are presented side by side with the OTAs, and the lowest price usually gets the click (estimates show by 2020, 20% of bookings will be made via metasearch)
- Using data-centric DMP/DSP marketing solutions that can inspire and engage customers during the booking journey, through to ‘experience’ and ‘share’, across multiple channels and devices
- Recognizing that not all efforts need to be CPC… Social channels within the booking journey have reached new heights and is one of the most effective digital hotel marketing efforts for converting clicks into bookings. Social has undergone a transformation from just being about ‘sharing’ to a legitimate and used research tool.
2P Ventures works with all our clients to not only provide them websites and booking engines that convert at industry leading rates, but also to navigate and take advantage of the marketing landscape to succeed.
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