Millions of travellers worldwide search for hotels on Google everyday. In fact, 75% of potential bookers will research your hotel online before booking, and 94% will switch between devices as they plan or book a trip. Ensuring your hotel can easily be found online on both desktop and mobile is thus crucial to increase online hotel bookings.
The easiest and quickest way to ensure you show up for travellers searching for hotels in your area is to utilise Google Hotel Ads. Google Hotel Ads display your hotel availability and rates on Google search, Google maps and Google assistant, easily attracting people who have a strong booking intent. Have we made you curious? Read on to learn more about how Google Hotel Ads work, how they are set up and why they’re effective.
What are Google Hotel Ads?
Google Hotel Ads are paid ads that hoteliers bid on to show up when travellers search for accommodation in specific locations. The ads will show hotel photos, reviews and prices, and provide a link to book a room.
You can either send people to your site to book, or allow them to book directly on Google to reduce the number of steps customers need to take. Google Hotel Ads let you tailor your hotel’s prices by availability and traveller itineraries, and only charge you for the ad when someone selects your room rate.
And it works: Premier Inn has reported a 40% increase in bookings from new customers with Google Hotel Ads, while US hotel chain La Quinta Inns & Suites doubled their conversion rate with mobile Google Hotel Ads.
How to set up Google Hotel Ads
If you like the sound of the above, the natural next step is to get started with your Google Hotel Ads setup. While the setup process is not overly complicated, it can prove to be time consuming for hoteliers already struggling to juggle tasks on their ever growing to-do list. We’ve tried to summarise the setup process in as few points as possible below:
1.) Show live rates and availability
Google Hotel Ads are dynamic, meaning they will show potential bookers live rates and availabilities. The first step in the setup process is to provide Google with a hotel list feed (the hotels you want to advertise), a price feed (an up-to-date set of prices for different itineraries) and a point-of-sale configuration page, also known as a landing page, that users arrive at after clicking on your ad. These are all managed in a Google Hotel Center account, which you’ll need to create should you not have one already.
The easiest and quickest way to connect the above is to work with a connectivity partner. As we already host this data, the team at HotelREZ can assist with linking up your live availability and room rates to your Google Hotel Center account.
2.) Choose the right images
After interacting with your ad, a potential booker can click through to the Google Hotel Ads booking module. This booking module contains more information about your hotel, such as photos, contact information, reviews and directions. For a comprehensive overview of the booking module, have a look at the different elements that make up a hotel ad.
Hotel photos are one of the most important elements as they will be what makes your ad stand out when people scroll through Google. Having high quality images of your hotel is crucial: they will receive more engagement, improve the booking experience for customers and ultimately increase hotel bookings. In fact, they’re so crucial that we’ve dedicated an entire blog article on the importance of image quality for hotels.
As part of our Hotel Marketing services, we offer our own image management system REZmedia. This allows us to ensure that all of your hotel images are of the highest quality, and helps us determine which images will work best for your hotel.
3.) Set your preferred bid
Because advertising on Google is like taking part in a massive online ad auction, you’ll need to set a bid on your ads. There are different types of bid strategies out there, meaning you can choose how much you’re willing to spend. You can choose cost-per-conversion (CPA), target ROAS, enhanced cost-per-click or a commission strategy. For an overview of the Google Hotel Ads bidding process, have a look at their bidding user guide.
While you can manually set up your preferred bid yourself, it can get complex quite quickly if you aren’t used to advertising on Google. We do have an experienced digital marketing team that’s well versed at setting up Google Hotel Ads and going through different ad bidding strategies with you. So if you need some help, don’t be afraid to reach out!
Managing your Google Hotel Ads ROI
It is crucial that your Google Hotel Ads deliver an adequate ROI and an increase in RevPar. So as with all other aspects of digital marketing, once your Google Hotel Ads have been set up, they’ll require continuous management and optimisation. Our digital marketing team provides our Google Hotel Ads clients with monthly performance reports. This allows them to see all bookings coming through Google Hotel Ads so they can see the direct benefit of running Google Hotel Ads campaigns.
Set up Google Hotel Ads with HotelREZ
At HotelREZ, we provide quality distribution, representation, marketing and consultancy services to more than 1,500 hotels in over 100 countries. We’re experts at effective online marketing to help our member hotels increase direct bookings. Find out how our hotel marketing services can help your hotel or get in touch today to discuss setting up your own Google Hotel Ads.
HotelREZ Hotels & Resorts was founded in 2004 by Mark Lewis, an experienced hospitality industry professional and entrepreneur. Over the course of over a decade the company has grown to be one of the leading hotel representation companies dedicated to marketing and connecting independent properties with bookers worldwide. HotelREZ now provides distribution, revenue, sales consultancy and marketing services and support to more than 1,500 hotels, apartments and hotel groups in over 100 countries including private label GDS chain code solutions. HotelREZ Hotels & Resorts is a SAAS company. HotelREZ also incorporates the global World Rainbow hotels, the world’s only GDS enabled LGBT global hotel consortia representing some 1200 hotels in 230 destinations across the globe.