HSMAI conference: Trends, metasearch tips from Google, TripAdvisor

By Chloe Riley on 2/24/2017

The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International presented its 2017 HSMAI Digital Marketing Strategy Conference earlier this week in New York – this co-presentation from Google and TripAdvisor focused on what both of the companies are seeing lately in terms of travel trends and best practices in metasearch.


Google Partner Development Manager Mike Mo:

Mobile: What’s shifting is that usually mobile traffic has been increasing, but bookings have been lagging. Hotel ads we see the same thing, about 60% of bookings on desktop, about 30% on mobile including tablet and phone. But now they’re seeing a shift. Additionally, Google Flights is seeing international carriers get more referrals from mobile and desktop – they expect that trend to continue in the upcoming year.

Millennials: Biggest shift we’ve seen is a rise in video in the search. 70% of all millennials say that video is very influential in where and how they travel. A 2015 Variety survey found that YouTube celebrities made up some of the top influencers for millennials. 

Foodies: Food dictates travel and Google sees a lot of searches around food. For better or worse, the term “foodie” is consistently gaining traction. Mo said Four Seasons does an amazing job of trying to market and segment toward those who have a high connection to food, i.e., video about their Michelin-rated restaurants, chef profile videos at each of their resorts focused on individual food inspiration. 

Hotel Ads: One of the biggest things Google will be working on this year is a new deal filter, which allows for pushing special rates and prices to users. Google has also rolled out more targeted offers when it comes to location-based rate, mobile-rate. 


TripAdvisor Account Manager Joanna Matloka:

Research: Data from 2015 shows 62% of all online travel bookers pass through TripAdvisor at some point. For just the month of January, the average TripAdvisor user traveling to or within the U.S. spent $4,570.

Booking Modes: In a TripAdvisor survey conducted this past year, the top three booking methods included: direct website, 30%, OTAs, 16%, telephone call, 13%. Phone is still a viable option for many people, so make sure you track your bookings through phone call and have your hotel’s phone number prominently and clearly displayed on your website.

Bidding on TripAdvisor: Originally, their metasearch disregarded price when ranking. That changed a year ago and now best price takes top slot on the site. 

Best practices: Websites with standardized content and quality images see high percentages on TripAdvisor’s Instant Booking function.

Originally published by HOTELS Magazine

Categories: Marketing, Digital
Insight Type: Articles