Send Out the Google Hotel Search Party

H1 - Hoteliers Assemble - GHS is Here to Help!

We’re almost at the point where the word Google can step up and replace the word ‘Internet’ in the dictionary so it should be of no surprise to anyone that the software giant has been slowly but surely elbowing it’s way to the front of the queue when it comes to connecting would-be travellers with all their needs - flights, fun things to do and you - hotels.


H2 - Google Flights (of Fancy)

Just around the time the boys and girls in the grand palacio de Google were putting the finishing touches on their flight plan - Google flights now accounts for almost twice the business of any of its nearest meta-search competitors - they shifted their gaze to what bounties there lay in accommodation solutions, aka OTA territory, where we venture cautiously if at all.
For those of you lost without a map right now I invite you to type your own establishment’s name into Google and search it. You’ll see a box on the right hand side of the screen with a list of prices from different OTAs and your own website too and that’s what we’re talking about.

Those of you who’ve done a millimetre more than the minimum -
- a Google My Business profile
- a domain name
- accurate, best available pricing on your website

will probably see a link to their own site somewhere on that list. If there are any among you that sees that link at the top of the list then you doubtless already have an understanding of how this works - and congratulations - but for the rest of you it’s crash course time.


H3 - Google, search ‘Google Hotel Search’

Some day, if we feel like doing some shopping we’ll Google shopping and a Google man will deliver bags full of Google-flavoured Google goods and it will all seem perfectly normal. For now though - for me at least - every time something in my life that used to go by it’s own name adopts ‘Google’ or simply ‘g’ as a prefix I start to get nervous and think they’ll come for me next and it will be “G-Donnchadh, at your service” before I know it.

Truthfully, once you get past the oddly sinister aspect to Google’s gradual renaming of everything you use in life, one comes to recognise that even ahead of taking over the world the company specialises in an output of well-designed, charismatic, useful products that are given extra utility by how easily linked they are to one another.

That’s right - their secret weapon is quality, quantity, connectability and user-friendliness. As invaders go they sure are focussed on improving things!

The eventual jump to streamlining one’s travel arrangements was inevitable. Their market share shows many welcomed Google Flights with open arms and the logical next step was Google Hotel Search - a tool that does a meta-search across platforms when someone searches the name of a particular hotel or destination and displays results from all the available channels, including - most importantly - the hotel’s own website and all for the great price of zero euros.

Let me say it loud and plainly for those in the cheap seats - put to good use this tool can increase your direct bookings and lower commissions to be paid to OTAs. It’s nice to have the big G on our side for once, isn’t it?


H4 - So, what’s the catch?

Well, there’s a few as it happens. In fact, you may have caught one already. Your placing in the search results is not dependent on price - yours should be the best available, remember? - but on your Google Ads budget, which is why you’ll inevitably see OTAs placed ahead of you even when they’re charging more.

Another hoop to manage your way through is getting your channel manager hooked up with what’s being sought and bought on their channel, which some channel managers are charging extra for, though I can tell you that it comes as part of the package with Amenitiz at no extra cost - book a free demo and see for yourself!

To the untrained eye it seems like Google have built another OTA-style wall between not only potential customers and you but between those same customers and OTAs even, and where OTA investment guarantees a return on investment, investment in Google Ads is a budget-dependent shot in the dark.

To trained eyes - guided eyes, even - the main point to note and consider should be that there can be a direct link to your booking engine available to potential customers for free that can be made to be more eye-catching by simply following the elementary rule of showing best available prices on one’s own site. The OTAs do not get bigger writing or logos and when everybody simmers down to the same size like that it’s the numbers that do the talking, truly.

After that, the main Google search results are still largely your wheelhouse to command. Invest time, effort and personality in building your website with an all-in-one platform such as Amenitiz, fill it to the brim with well-researched keywords to get your SEO on track and you’ll effectively double your visibility when you’re searched on the most popular search engine on the planet before anyone even considers clicking a link.

There’s only so far the humble musings of a blogger such as myself will get you however. Take the time to talk to one of the giants on whose shoulders I stand - one of our Amenitiz experts - and after that take a minute and book yourself a free demo on the platform and see for yourself how you can make Google work for you and your business, at least until they make you change the name to G-Business.