By Diego Alonso Jiménez
Today, hundreds of thousands of hoteliers around the globe are empowered to take control of their hotel profiles and drive bookings through the use of metasearch marketing tools. And these metasearch tools are becoming increasingly crucial in staying competitive, just as metasearch is showing to be increasingly important in the booking journey. Which makes it important for hotel advertisers, too.
Metasearch creates an unbiased and transparent marketplace for the independent hotel, the OTA, and the chain to grow their business and connect with the millions of travelers searching for and booking hotels online.
In light of that, we’re going to explore what advantages metasearch sites provide to hoteliers. Then, we’ll look at the ways metasearch is empowering hoteliers online.
What advantage do quality metasearch tools have over others? The answer: Acute focus.
With the rapid increase in popularity among travelers, metasearch engines are a frequently visited and highly used hotel search tool.
However, a high-quality hotel metasearch marketing platform needs to have focus. A very specific and unwavering one at that. To help property managers best, the channel needs to cater exclusively to them and their establishment’s marketing needs. No planes, trains, or automobiles. Just a strong focus on accommodations.
This allows a high-quality hotel metasearch platform to continually assess the specific hotel-related needs of both travelers and hoteliers. As a result, such a hotel metasearch platform is better positioned to offer a unique and intuitive experience to travelers and hoteliers alike.
In fact, hotel managers often dismiss the various applications out there as cumbersome and difficult to navigate. Hoteliers, especially independent and family-run owners, have limited time and other competing demands.
Therefore, quality hotel metasearch marketing tools need to be effective and efficient to use.
Here’s a look at six ways these tools empower hoteliers.
#1 Real direct sales: Bookings are made on the hotel website Hoteliers managing CPC campaigns through a high-quality hotel metasearch marketing platform typically have two options: Either they keep the booking engine offered by their connectivity provider, or adapt a free booking engine offered by the metasearch site.
In the latter case, the hotel manager needs to be able to completely customize the booking engine, which should be designed to maximize booking conversions by the provider. Yet, it shouldn’t end there. It needs to allow the property manager the ability to include their many different types of services and rooms on offer.
It also needs to be responsive in its design so that it connects hotels with travelers on the go.
A high-quality metasearch site also has the traveler in mind while designing and providing solutions that will help the hotelier connect with them directly. Travelers should be able to complete bookings intuitively and quickly with the hotel’s brand image preserved.
Whether the hotelier chooses to keep the current booking engine or adapt the one provided by the metasearch site, travelers must be redirected to the hotel’s site to complete their bookings.
This is what real direct sales look like, and a quality hotel metasearch solution will provide it.
#2 Cost-per-click (CPC) empowers hoteliers to do more The CPC model fosters an even playing field, whereby hotels big and small can participate transparently in the same market. On a high-quality hotel metasearch site, both the booking sites and the hoteliers compete for their position, and in the end it’s the market itself that sets the appropriate CPC.
Hotel managers take advantage of this opportunity to increase the position of their properties in the CPC campaigns in order to attract direct traffic to their website.
To do so profitably, it’s essential that accommodation providers optimize each step in the booking process, which OTAs already do.
The CPC model motivates hotel managers like yourself to improve their site along with the booking experience for the traveler. It gives them the opportunity to increase profit-per-booking margins and attract a greater volume to their direct channel.
Quality hotel metasearch sites empower hotel managers to determine their own success and profitability online by providing tools that work based on CPC and hotel profile optimization instead of collecting steep commissions.
#3 Profitability is at the core When it comes to metasearch marketing, profitability for the advertiser is key. This channel should be one that fosters the entrepreneurial spirit among all hoteliers.
In utilizing the CPC model mentioned above, hotel managers are encouraged to get involved to a greater extent. The dynamism of the CPC model (cost-per-click that fluctuates depending on a range of different variables) contrasts with the static nature of the CPA model (an agreed-upon commission based on cost-per-acquisition).
The goal of a reputable hotel metasearch solution is to help hoteliers reduce distribution costs by increasing their share of direct bookings.
#4 Automation Traditionally, the task of estimating the right CPC can take up a lot of time, a luxury that hoteliers aren’t usually able to afford.
Therefore, the tool needs to be a smart one. It has to take the heavy lifting and burden of weighing multiple dynamic factors out of the equation.
Valuable hotel meta tools now consider factors of seasonality, offers from other channels, market differences, the hotel’s specific campaign budget, the size of the property, and its rates. In doing so, it provides a CPC automatically without the hotelier needing to work it out manually, or worse, guess at it.
This CPC is systematically adjusted, helping the hotelier to remain competitive throughout the campaign day after day.
#5 No reconciliation of automatic bookings Commission reconciliations are not fun and thankfully, not an issue with a well-designed hotel metasearch marketing tool. Why? The CPC model doesn’t involve commissions (CPA).
Direct hotel bookings are direct. They’re made only on the hotel’s website. So, commission reconciliations aren’t a part of the transaction.
#6 Sales volume By enjoying a healthy presence on a high-quality hotel metasearch marketing site, coupled with a strong marketing strategy, hoteliers are able to achieve favorable positioning. In turn, they attract a greater volume of direct traffic to their website in order to generate direct bookings.
The travel accommodations market is a very dynamic one. The hotel industry is constantly seeing new technologies, new tools, new business models, and evolutions of all of the above.
Many of these evolutions are informed by hoteliers, hotel managers, and hotel marketers themselves: In our case, hotel advertisers help us fine-tune and develop tailor-made metasearch solutions for their businesses. Over the years of working with these hotel advertisers, we’ve developed hotel metasearch marketing tools that are effective, intuitive, and affordable.