Earlier this year, Google began testing a new product called Book on Google. This product allows Google users to book a hotel room right from Google. The Book on Google product began as a way to make booking on mobile devices easier, but has since expanded to desktop browsers. Rather than managing CPC and PPC campaigns, Book on Google uses the Google Hotel Ads Commission Program to allow small, independent hotels to reach large audiences by paying Google a commission when guests book through the search engine.
The benefits of using Book on Google for small hotels are numerous. The product makes it easy for guests to compare hotels because the amenities offered appear on the SERPs. Guests trust the search engine giant because they constantly use it and therefore are likely to trust Google to process their credit card information more than they trust a small and relatively unknown hotel. Google, unlike major OTAs, sends the booking confirmation to the hotel directly when a guest books through Google. This allows the hotel to begin building a relationship with the guest before arrival, improving customer service and generating loyalty to the brand.
Book on Google is now available to all Hotel Ads partners in the U.S. While Google Hotel Ads is a global product, Book on Google is currently only operating in America. Many hotels already work with these Google’s partners to allow guests to book on TripAdvisor and therefore do not have to do any additional technical work to enroll in the Book on Google program.
In 2016, we can expect that Google will make moves to bring the Book on Google product global. Because the Hotel Ads program already operates worldwide, the commission program can be rolled out on a large scale. Google has already announced plans to add hotel amenities to their Map results to facilitate guests’ searches in 24 other countries next year. 2015 was a big year for Google in the booking sphere and their momentum likely won’t slow in 2016.
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