4 Key Questions to Ask When Evaluating Metasearch Providers

Key things to consider when evaluating metasearch providers.

Ashley Proceviat
October 20, 2022

Metasearch advertising isn’t just a ‘nice to have’—it’s one of the strongest channels for driving qualified traffic to your website and for generating more direct bookings. The audience that metasearch provides is very qualified, and as such, it’s one of the most expensive marketing channels. How can you ensure you’re getting the most out of your metasearch efforts?

Many agencies and booking engine partners offer metasearch, but not all metasearch providers are created equal. Here are some questions you should consider when evaluating metasearch providers, to see the strongest results.

Question 1: Who is currently managing your metasearch, and are they actively managing it? 

If you are running metasearch, consider who you are partnering with. There are many companies who offer metasearch, however, these players are not always digital marketing experts. They don’t necessarily dedicate the resources required to maximize your campaign’s performance and impression share across each metasearch site. 

In Sojern’s case, we constantly optimize metasearch campaigns (in addition to other marketing channels) based on intent signals, to get the optimal bid in front of your potential guest. Check out how we drove metasearch success for our customer VIK Hotels.

Question 2: How do you charge for metasearch?

There are several payment models for metasearch. Metasearch was traditionally managed on a Cost-Per-Click (CPC) basis, meaning you pay for every click that a metasearch engine drives to your website, whether the click led to a booking or not. The downside is that even if a user accidentally clicked on your link, you are paying for it, which means user mistakes can become costly.

Recently, other payment models have emerged, including commission per booking and commission per stay. Sojern has several payment models that work for hotels, whatever their goals and budgets may be.

Question 3: Is your current provider (or prospective provider) de-duplicating bookings against other marketing channels?

Some hotel marketers are hesitant to use one partner for all marketing channels, and see it as too risky to ‘put all your eggs in one basket’. However, running multiple marketing channels with several partners can lead to paying several times for a single booking.

For example, if a customer is influenced by a display ad and a social media ad from one partner, but then is influenced by a metasearch ad from a different partner, who ultimately gets credit for the booking? More importantly, how much time are you wasting trying to figure that out? 

Because Sojern specializes in multichannel advertising, we track performance across all advertising channels to avoid duplicate conversion counting. Our customers only ever pay once for each booking, whether they were reached with one channel, or several.

Question 4: Can you tell me about my performance?

Every provider tracks performance differently. So, you want to think about what is important to you and what you value in terms of reporting. 

At Sojern, transparency is in our DNA, which is why our clients can track and report on their campaign performance in real-time, with their Sojern Online Account.

Metasearch advertising isn’t just a ‘nice to have’—it’s one of the strongest channels for driving qualified traffic to your website and for generating more direct bookings. Check out Sojern’s Complete Guide to Hotel Metasearch to learn how you can add metasearch to your marketing strategy.

This is the final part of our four-part blog series on metasearch marketing for hoteliers. Check out our first three articles on the basics of metasearch, the benefits of having a strong metasearch presence, and tips for how to get started.

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