We teamed up with Google for our latest report on the hotel industry. By working together, Sojern & Google see the path to hotel bookings in a new and exciting light. Here, we’ve highlighted three of the places the hotel industry is experiencing rapid growth and what you need to know to stay ahead of the game:
1. Across hotel segments and searches, independent hotels are on the rise.
Our report begins with a look at what categories of branded searches Google sees growth. Vacation rentals are the fastest growing category year over year, and as Barry Cahill, Head of Analytics Travel at Google, explained in our recent webinar, much of these are searched for Airbnb getaways.
Searches for branded independent hotels take the spot for the third largest year-over-year growth. Independent hotels also top the five fastest growing hotel brands.
With 60% of leisure travelers and 55% of business travelers use search engines to plan their trip, it’s important that you have a strong SEO & SEM strategy to capture these growing searches. Check out our webinar to get help creating a strong search strategy.
2. Mobile rises on the weekends and across all segments.
On the weekends we see the share of mobile hotel searches rise and desktop searches fall. As consumers move away from their work and home computers and go about their weekend plans, they bring their smartphones, and their travel dreaming, along with them.
Our report also shows that every hotel segment experienced growth in terms of mobile queries. The luxury category, for instance, has a 23% increase in mobile queries year over year.
It’s important that you have a strong and friction-free mobile experience in order to turn these lookers into bookers. Check out Leonardo’s webinar on how to do just that.
3. Local and international development drives intent for hotels.
Overall, both Sojern and Google see year-over-year growth in searches for hotels. When it comes to specific destinations where that growth is occurring, we see two interesting trends:
- Outdoor offerings are driving growth in hotel searches for domestic locations like Gatlinburg and Colorado Springs.
- With the easing of travel to Cuba for American travelers, we see two Cuban destinations jump onto the list of rising international destinations.
If your hotel is located in one of these emerging destinations, be sure to capitalize on the additional searches with a strategy that raises your property’s brand awareness. Facebook is a great place to do just that, with 1 in 3 travelers referencing social media as a main source of travel ideas and inspiration.