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What is hotel metasearch management software? Effective metasearch and digital marketing campaigns help hoteliers drive revenue, attract new customers, and achieve greater business goals. The tools and services provided by a metasearch management software enable travel brands to maximize their digital reach. This in turn, allows them to grow their business and increase their profitability. For info on metasearch and hotel advertising technology trends, questions that you should ask vendors and more download the 2021 Hoteliers Guide to Hotel Metasearch Software How can metasearch management software... Read the full Metasearch Management Software software overview

10 Best Metasearch Management Software

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2021 Winner HotelTechAwards
Hoteliers voted Bookassist as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Bookassist Metasearch

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
100 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Start with Risk-Free Google Pay-Per-Stay and transition to our Grow and Scale programs for increased visibility and improved ROI. Many companies offer connectivity to metasearch c...

Geography: Regional
Geography: Global Verified Customer Support: Yes No
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Hoteliers voted Bookassist as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted Avvio as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Avvio - Metasearch

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
94 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Feed your rates and availability directly to some of the world’s most influential travel shopper websites from your Avvio booking platform. Reach more booking-ready customers an...

Geography: Regional
Geography: Global Verified Customer Support: Yes No
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Hoteliers voted Avvio as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted Koddi as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Koddi

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
84 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Koddi is an advanced reporting, bid management and campaign intelligence platform for metasearch publishers like Google Hotel Ads, TripAdvisor, Kayak, Trivago, and other travel pr...

Geography: Regional
Geography: Global Verified Customer Support: Yes No
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Hoteliers voted Koddi as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted D-Edge as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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D-EDGE - MetaGenius

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
75 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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TripAdvisor, Google Hotels Ads, Trivago, Kayak... Travellers favour metasearch, that is therefore vital in today's hotel distribution landscape! In order to help you leverage meta...

Geography: Regional
Geography: Global Verified Customer Support: Yes No
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Hoteliers voted D-Edge as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted Triptease as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Triptease: Attract

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
71 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Supercharge your metasearch with smart bidding Reach the most valuable guests first. Take control of your own traffic acquisition with a system designed to identify and convert hi...

Geography: Regional
Geography: Global Verified Customer Support: Yes No
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Hoteliers voted Triptease as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted WIHP Hotels as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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WIHP Hotels - Meta I/O

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
61 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Meta I/O platform connects your property to the main metasearch (Google, Tripadvisor, Kayak, Trivago, Skyscanner, Wego) and allows you to easily manage and control your ad campaig...

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Hoteliers voted WIHP Hotels as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted Amadeus as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Amadeus iHotelier® Demand Services

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
7 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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TravelClick's Demand Services solutions broaden the reach of your distribution network and maximize direct bookings from metasearch sites. Deliver real-time rate updates directly ...

Geography: Regional
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Hoteliers voted Amadeus as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted Conversant as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Conversant

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
7 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Conversant LLC is a leader in interaction management, empowering brands to transform ordinary customer experiences into meaningful, human experiences. Our connected suite of perso...

Geography: Regional
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Hoteliers voted Conversant as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted DerbySoft as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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DerbySoft (Click Metasearch Services)

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
7 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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DerbySoft enables travel companies to work together through technology and innovation. As the leading provider of high-performance hotel distribution, DerbySoft connects suppliers...

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Hoteliers voted DerbySoft as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Hoteliers voted myhotelshop as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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myhotelshop

HotelTech Logo score
HT SCORE
7 out of 100
Hotel Tech Score is a composite ranking comprising of key signals such as: user satisfaction, review quantity, review recency, and vendor submitted information to help buyers better understand their products.
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Myhotelshop, founded in 2012, aims to strengthen the direct distribution of hotels and to increase their profitability. Myhotelshop helps hotels to be present with their own websi...

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Hoteliers voted myhotelshop as the #1 Metasearch & Ad Tech provider in the 2021 HotelTechAwards
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Recent Metasearch & Ad Tech Articles

How Does Hotel Booking Software Work?

by
Hotel Tech Report
5 months ago

The growth in technology tools for hotels has complicated life for hoteliers. While it has always been important to bring potential guests into the conversion funnel, there are now many ways to both capture and convert lookers to bookers. When considering the different ways to bring prospects into your hotel’s funnel, it can be helpful to start with the goal and then look at technologies that accomplish that goal. This approach differs from other common vendor evaluation processes in one key way: it puts the goal first rather than the category. Generally speaking you always want to start closest to the conversion event and work your way higher and higher in the purchase funnel.  This means that you should start by analyzing your hotel's booking software to make sure that you don't have leakage (i.e. low conversion rates).  Next you'll analyze your website and direct channel and lastly you'll explore ways to bring more visitors into that funnel once you've sealed up any holes. In this method, we advise analyzing data across your business from channel mix to conversion rates to identify problem areas.  Once you've identified these problems, prioritize starting at the bottom of the funnel and work your way up.  We'll then explore the tools that can help solve each of these problems (hint: some tools may solve the same problem in completely different categories).  We'll start by clearly explaining the different types of hotel booking software.  We'll then outline the four main objectives of any hotel marketing strategy, we'll then dive into which software categories and providers can help shore up issues within each objective. With an increasing number of guests choosing online booking - up to 80% of guests under the age of 30 - a well-informed hotelier should have a solid understanding of the hotel booking software landscape. The term “hotel booking software” can refer to a few different types of software, which can be confusing for hoteliers who might not work in the technology space on a regular basis. In this article, we’ll introduce you to the five main categories of hotel booking software: OTAs, Central Reservations Systems (CRS), booking engines, channel managers, and property management systems (PMS). By the end of this blog post, you’ll know the ins and outs of each so you can maximize your property’s online reach and make the right technology decisions for your hotel.   Central Reservations System: Manage Rates & Inventory It’s a good rule of thumb to diversify your mix of reservation channels, so most hotels don’t rely solely on OTA bookings. Large hotels and chain hotels often use central reservation systems (CRSs) to manage bookings made through their own reservations teams. CRSs allow various reservations agents to view real-time rates and availability and create, edit, or cancel reservations in one centralized system. A hotel wouldn’t use a central reservations system alone, though. The CRS would receive rates from a revenue management system, exchange availability data and reservation details with a property management system, and possibly also integrate with a channel manager to distribute inventory to third-party channels like OTAs or the GDS. CRSs deliver the most benefit to hotels with reservations teams or which are part of a brand or chain with off-site reservations offices.   Booking Engine: Drive Direct Bookings Besides booking through reservations staff, guests can also make reservations on hotels’ own websites - but in order for that to be possible, the hotel website needs a booking system to sell hotel rooms called a booking engine. Hotel booking engines display real-time rates and availability, house the booking process and gathering of guest details, and integrate the confirmed reservations with the hotel’s property management system or hotel management system. Some property management systems include integrated booking engines, and some hotel-specific website builders also come with booking engine capability. But even if your existing tech stack includes a built-in booking engine, it’s worth doing some extra research to find the most user-friendly booking engine. Glitches or slow loading speeds can make guests change their mind about booking at your hotel, and, on the flip side, a great booking engine with upselling and customization capabilities can increase your conversion rate and your RevPAR.   Channel Manager: Facilitate Bookings on 3rd Parties Direct reservations - whether through a reservations agent or your hotel’s website - usually don’t lead to a full house every night. A savvy hotelier leverages third-party channels to maximize online exposure and develop varied segments of guests. In order to work with third-party channels most efficiently, hotels use channel management software. Channel managers often support connections to hundreds of third-party sites that range from big OTAs (Booking.com and Expedia) to smaller niche sites (HostelWorld and Mr & Mrs Smith) and wholesalers (Hotelbeds). Manually updating rates and availability on hundreds of sites is impossible, so a channel manager makes it easy to keep all of your distribution channels accurate and up-to-date. Some property management systems include integrated channel management functionality; if not, be sure to choose a channel manager that supports integration with your PMS so reservations can sync seamlessly.   Property Management Systems: From Hotel Bookings to Guest Experience Management A property management system is at the core of your hotel tech stack. It houses all of your reservations, guest profiles, billing information, room statuses, and more. Small hotels often opt for a combined PMS with a channel manager and booking engine referred to as hotel management system.  This helps to streamline hotel operations in a simple and easy to use management solution and reservation software combined - which can be more cost-effective.  Nearly all hotel departments use the PMS on a daily basis: front desk agents check-in guests, housekeeping teams learn which rooms need to be cleaned, finance teams manage billing, leadership teams look at reporting and trends. Without any booking engine or channel management capabilities, a PMS is only considered hotel booking software if we think about reservations booked manually by hotel staff. But most PMSs include modules for additional functions; some PMSs even include CRS, channel management, and booking engine functionality. If your hotel uses a PMS that connects directly to OTAs and has integrated an CRS, channel manager, and booking engine, that PMS might be the only system you need.   Online Travel Agencies (OTA): 3rd Party Booking Extranets Out of all those reservations booked online, many of them come through online travel agents or OTAs.  The smallest hotels and guest houses (under 10 rooms) often lack direct bookings in their channel mix at all while major hotel chains command a larger share relative to the OTAs. You can think of these digital marketplaces as an Amazon for travel; travelers can use various criteria to search through available hotels, flights, rental cars, and more, then complete the booking process through that marketplace platform.  Guests often choose OTAs due to the perception of better pricing on travel products and streamlined package offerings which help to automate a lot of the itinerary management processes. OTAs offer significant benefits to guests, such as loyalty programs, credibility, and the convenience of having all the available options at your fingertips. Guests complete their booking on the OTA and receive a confirmation from the OTA, at which point the OTA sends a notification to the hotel with the reservation details. Those reservation details integrate with the hotel’s property management system or travel to the property management system via a channel manager - more on that later! For hoteliers, OTAs also deliver plenty of benefits. OTAs give hotels visibility among massive audiences (Booking.com receives well over 200 million monthly visits, for example) and access to marketing channels that would be cost-prohibitive if the hotel tried to get similar reach independently. Many hotels also experience the “billboard effect,” in which travelers find a hotel they like on an OTA, and then they search for that hotel’s direct website to complete their booking. However, all this marketing exposure comes at a cost; most OTAs charge commissions between 15% and 20% on each confirmed reservation.     Goal #1: Optimize Website & Hotel Booking Software Conversion When it comes to getting more direct bookings, it’s all about the hotel website (and booking software or IBE). After all, a hotel with a buggy website and poor user flow will scare off many potential guests who seek a trustworthy booking experience. Direct booking tools promise growth in direct bookings by increasing conversions on a hotel’s website through price check tools, real-time guest messaging, smart segmentation, and pricing optimization. These direct booking tools offer a mix of capabilities, so it’s best to evaluate each according to how your hotel prioritizes direct bookings. Booking engines are a necessity for selling rooms directly. Without a modern and intuitive interface that’s optimized for conversion, guests will go elsewhere out of frustration or suspicion. Look for a booking engine or hotel booking software with real-time inventory updates; otherwise, you risk double booking across channels. Reputation management is more than just an operational tool: it’s also handy for marketing. Most hotel reputation management solutions have the ability to feature previous guest reviews on your website; doing so can dramatically boost your conversion rate. Virtual tours can help conversions. When potential guests consider a hotel, they want to be certain that the property is as advertised. Consider investing in a virtual tour to give guests piece of mind.   Goal #2: Drive More Traffic to Your Hotel Website With Paid & Social Once a website has been optimized for direct bookings and conversion, the next step is to entice more potential guests to it. There’s a blended approach to making this happen.   Content marketing is one of the most affordable ways to engage potential guests and to bring them to your website. With great content, you’ll have an engaging website to attract visitors, as well as plenty to post on social media. Be sure to make your content relevant to your guest profile. Social media is a challenging place but can deliver results when done right -- especially for distribution of the great content you’ve created! Social media is also a goldmine of consumer insights. Leveraging social media tools can bring you closer to your customers. Influencer marketing continues to be a growth area for hospitality marketers. Inviting influencers to experience the property, or paying them to post about the property, appeals to hotels looking to reach particular demographics. These influencer marketing tools should factor into the mix, helping identify the right influencers and tracking the success of your campaign. Digital marketing agencies are assets for those hotels that have enough budget to engage subject matter experts. Hotel digital marketing vendors use their experience across clients to build high-impact campaigns that can be quite intimidating to deploy solo.   Goal #3: Drive Retention and Return Visits According to research from Bain & Co., the company that invented the Net Promoter Score, increasing customer retention rates by 5% increases profits by 25% to 95%. Statistics aside, it really comes down to customer acquisition cost for hotels. With each booking channel taking a large commission for bringing in a guest, it can be extraordinarily lucrative to re-engage former guests. Loyalty programs are helpful assets to organize and track a comprehensive loyalty program for independents. The best technology will give you insights into your guest profiles, and help you craft the best offerings to each group.  Read our article reviewing independent loyalty programs to decide if this option is right for your hotel or properties. Email marketing is a critical piece of the loyalty puzzle. When evaluating email marketing tools, you want to be sure that it integrates with your existing loyalty program and hotel CRM tools.   Goal #4: Develop a Well Balanced Omni-Channel Distribution Mix Third-party websites and metasearch are important pieces of any hotel revenue management strategy. As part of a cohesive approach that includes direct bookings, wholesale, and groups, these channels are valuable tools to shore up low demand periods and achieve overall revenue targets. Metasearch and ad tech bring advanced reporting, bidding and inventory management to your third-party distribution strategy. These metasearch tools help hoteliers wrangle the complex web of metasearch campaigns, as well as integrating in real-time with existing systems to maximize profitable bookings without overbooking. Review management software performs a critical function: it monitors your hotel’s reviews for potential operational issues. Catching poor performance before it affects the guest experience means better reviews -- and a higher ranking in search results on OTAs and metasearch sites.   ** Want to get started today? Run an internal SWOT analysis for your hotel's marketing department to identify weaknesses and opportunities then use that analysis to inform where you invest resources.  Rather than comparing only direct booking tools to one another, for example, this process focuses on the desired outcome -- and then compares tools across categories that may help your hotel achieve that outcome. With this outcome-based approach, you'll have stronger odds of successfully matching with the correct vendor for a specific issue.   What else would you like to learn about hotel booking software? Let us know!

Koddi Named 2018’s Top Rated Social Media Software in the HotelTechAwards

by
Hotel Tech Report
5 months ago

February 12, 2018 -  Hotel Tech Report has named Koddi 2018’s top-rated Social Media Software based on data from thousands of hoteliers in more than 40 countries around the world.  Over 100 of the world’s elite hotel technology products competed for a chance to win this prestigious title. The HotelTechAwards platform (by HotelTechReport.com) leverages real customer data to determine best of breed products that help hoteliers grow their bottom lines. “When you look at the explosions of channels that marketers must manage and the complexity of the traveler purchase process - it’s overwhelming. Metasearch and social ads are revenue drivers for hotels everywhere, and Koddi has created a product that helps save marketers time and get better results. We were blown away by how much Koddi users truly love the product”, says Hotel Tech Report’s Adam Hollander. Koddi is poised for sustained growth in 2018. Hoteliers recognized Koddi’s incredibly high return on investment (ROI) where Koddi exceeded the category average by 13%. We asked an Austin-based hotel digital marketing manager to describe their experience with the platform, “Koddi empowers and enables me to review data at every level possible. It also helps me monitor campaign performance with alerts, comparison insights and property labels.” To read the full review and more, head to Koddi's profile on Hotel Tech Report

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Recent Metasearch & Ad Tech News & Community Updates

Koddi Offers Hotels Early Access to Premium Ads on Priceline

Koddi
3 months ago

Koddi a leading advertising technology company, today announced that it has opened early access to Priceline Sponsored Ads. This latest offering creates a new suite of premium sponsored ad placements available on Priceline.com. Through February 28th, hotels that sign up for early access can qualify for a 30% rebate. Priceline Sponsored Ads are a second-price auction that allows hoteliers to drive not only impressions but also bookings for their properties on Priceline. This pay-per-click advertising program greatly increases hotels’ visibility with premium, sponsored placement positioning, including in ad space at the top of the search results page. Custom ad copy provides the opportunity to highlight specific property features, including enhanced cleaning and safety procedures. "This new, early release opportunity offers unique benefits that will help drive immediate bookings as well as secure long term value to hotels as part of their ongoing recovery planning,” said Nicholas Ward, President and Co-founder of Koddi. “We’re proud to offer hotels this solution to assist in their ongoing recovery planning and future growth strategies, in partnership with such a recognized industry leader as Priceline.” There is no contract or commitment required for the participating properties. Participants that sign up for early access from now through February 28, 2021 will receive a 30% rebate on all funds deposited during the promotional period. For more information or details on how to get started, please visit the link above.

Bookassist Offers NEW Google Pay Per Stay to Hotels

Bookassist
7 months ago

Google pay-per-stay (PPS) offers hotels all the benefits of advertising directly on Google Hotel Ads, and only pay for the clicks that deliver bookings. For hotels that are new to Metasearch Google PPS is the perfect opportunity to get started. Google Hotel Ads is by far the largest of the Metasearch channels. Commanding over 50% of the market and with double digit growth year on year, it offers unrivalled visibility and exposure for hotels.   No booking, no fee Google pay-per-stay was launched by Google to hotels across the globe in direct response to the impact of Covid-19. The no booking, no fee model ensures that hotels only ever pay for the business they get. Cancellations are not charged for – a big relief for hotels who have experienced a huge surge in cancellations during Covid-19. Given the uncertainty that still exists in many markets Google PPS is welcomed by hoteliers as a risk-free way to capture new bookings and manage cancellations while at the same time minimising overall costs.   Engage directly and save money  What many hoteliers fail to realise is that their hotel is already present on Metasearch channels, but they are represented there by OTAs who get all the bookings. By engaging directly with Metasearch, hotels can immediately save money due to the lower direct commission involved. Better still there is no upfront advertising budget required and payment is only made after the guest stay.   Target specific booking windows Metasearch as an advertising platform, is unique  in its ability to target specific booking windows. This is something that PPC can’t do. Metasearch enables hotels to increase their visibility for specific date ranges, specific lengths of stay and for specific booking windows. It’s the perfect partner for targeting the domestic market.   Bookassist is one of a few providers across Europe now offering Google PPS to hotels.  Bookassist, voted the #1 Metasearch management company by Hotel Tech Report users manages Metasearch campaigns for over 250 hotels across 15 countries. Head of Metasearch Jacopo Rita says:  “Google PPS is risk-free and should be an easy decision for hotels. They’ll save from day one simply by engaging directly. From there they can transition to our Grow and Scale programs where our Metasearch experts will add new channels, improve their ROI and scale their Metasearch business”   Connected to all major booking engines You don’t have to be a Bookassist booking engine client. We can connect your hotel to Metasearch platforms through your Channel Manager or CRS. For hotels that are new to Metasearch Google PPS is the perfect opportunity to get started. In the current climate of continuing market uncertainty and tightened resources, Metasearch offers a lifeline to hotels to gain much needed visibility.  

Google Hotels joins the battle for bookings

By Lara Salomon
1 year ago

The battle for bookings is nothing new — properties have been vying for coveted direct bookings and rebelling against the commissions charged by online travel agencies (OTAs) practically since they arrived on the scene. But the battlefield is shifting thanks to the introduction of Google Hotels.   What is Google Hotels? Following the success of Google Flights, the search engine giant quietly launched a brand new feature to its ever-expanding repertoire in March 2019, helping users to find the perfect property for their next trip. Picture the scene: a traveller is planning a getaway for business or leisure, and naturally their first stop is Google. They type in something simple, perhaps “Hotels in London”, and what will they see? Beyond the Google Ad for the most popular OTAs, they will find what looks much like a booking platform: a list of available properties along with their prices, ratings, reviews and features on the left, and a view of the area ala Google Maps on the right sporting pins with pricing for every available property in the area. Click on a property on the left, or a pin on the right, and you’ll see a more detailed overview - photographs, reviews, a location summary, a link to the property’s website, and pricing from a range of sources including OTAs, and the property itself if it has made its pricing available.  This is Google Hotels, the latest feature for the oracle of online information, which provides users with a quick and easily navigated breakdown of accommodation providers in the area that they are looking at, including the latest deals, filters to help travellers find precisely the features that the want and need, and even the option to book their stay directly from the platform.  “You can filter by amenities such as “kid friendly”, “pool”, “fitness center” and many more, selecting as many filters as you wish. Basically, if you only want hotels that offer free breakfast, a pool and a fitness center, which are also kid friendly – you can set that out from the very beginning to avoid wasted time.” — God Save The Points This is the perfect opportunity for travellers since, as Gilbert Ott of God Save The Points puts it, “I love searching for hotels on 15 different websites just to get an idea of the best prices and places to stay, said no one ever.” But what impact does this new feature have on the tug-o-war that is the battle for bookings? Does it give an advantage to OTAs? To properties themselves? Or is it a new contender entirely, positioning itself as a new challenge for both sides to overcome? Ding, ding — Let the battle begin   Round One: Where do properties sit when it comes to Google Hotels? At first glance, it would seem that Google Hotels is a great opportunity for properties to encourage travellers to book with them directly. The overview that Google Hotels provides for each property may look much like a Google My Business page by linking to the property’s own website, displaying their photographs and highlighting their latest reviews, but it also gives accommodation providers the opportunity to list their own pricing alongside that of OTAs, and offers them more control over where and how their guests are able to book with them. Find out more about improving your hotel's Google presence As Raini Hamdi of Skift points out: “Providing users the option to “visit our website” and also to phone the hotel directly via mobile or send a message... gives more ways for users to get in touch with hotels directly, bypassing the intermediaries which are listed further below.” “Google now offers a clear index for prices, reviews and photos, making a hotel’s content stand out a lot more prominently than in the past.” — Skift Better still, properties that are already making use of Google Hotel Ads will receive a bigger bang for their buck, being displayed first within Google Hotels search results, and highlighted amongst “Deals”, encouraging guests to book direct. However, if you’re not already advertising via Google Hotel Ads, adding your property’s pricing to the platform is not as simple as making sure that your website is listed, or even as simple as setting up and keeping your Google My Business listing up to date. A glance at the documentation that Google has put together for making sure that your pricing reflects correctly (and is ready for Hotel Ads too), shows that getting your property set up on the platform is at least a four-step process, often requiring some technical expertise or assistance from one of Google’s third-party integration partners. This means that, from the get-go, getting yourself listed on the platform requires some financial outlay if you don’t already have someone with technical experience on staff, which, for smaller properties, is often the case. Greg Sterling of Search Engine Land explains that, even with (and possibly as a result of) the introduction of Google Hotels, “it’s getting much more challenging to be visible in organic results for hotel category searches... Accordingly, hospitality brands are now all but compelled to buy Hotel Ads to appear anywhere above the fold.” And it’s not just the financial aspect that stops Google Hotels from being an ideal platform for direct bookings. Trish Leighton of Vizergynotes, “after browsing a few hotels, I noticed how difficult it was to get to the hotel website directly and how much effort was placed into directing clicks to the Hotel Ads.” “It’s what happens after you narrow down your search results that is having an impact on direct bookings. Google provides a handful of ways to book that room, with the eye-catching photos, hotel information tabs, reduced rate messaging, reviews, and nearby competitor rates far more appealing than the little “Website” button that actually takes you to the hotel website.” — Vizergy Though properties are able to list their own pricing and have buttons that link to their websites, the opportunities for directing travellers to those websites are often lost amongst OTA and competitor listings, or amongst the other range of calls to action that the Google Hotels overviews offer to travellers, mitigating the direct booking benefits that it may have held for accommodation providers.   Round Two: What about OTAs' relationships with Google Hotels? You would think that the opportunity to have your properties listed prominently on Google’s latest feature, and continuing to get commissions when users choose to book through your platform would be seen as an overwhelmingly positive boon for OTAs, however the addition of Google Hotels is not all sunshine, roses and pockets full of cash for OTAs either. OTAs certainly have the advantage over independent properties and smaller groups when it comes to having multiple properties listed, multiple opportunities for travellers to be booking through them on the new platform, and the benefit of their reviews being displayed prominently in overviews for each property. However, the fact that users are able to book directly from Google’s platform rather than being directed to OTA websites is expected to have a significant effect on the traffic and popularity of third-party booking sites, particularly when Google makes booking from one platform such a pleasure. “Google Hotels offers all the functionality and tools of its competitors such as Kayak, Expedia and Booking.com. It has the benefit of Google Maps and integration with Google search results (generally pretty high in results). The question thus arises: will Google Hotels create a giant black hole that sucks all the direct traffic away from online hotel booking sites?” — Search Engine Land As Chetan Patel of Onyx Hospitality Group explained to Triptease shortly after the new platform had been released, “Google seems to be taking over the role OTAs have played in the guest journey so far, and are arguably doing a better job at it.”   Does this mean that the battle for bookings is over? If so, who has won? The introduction of Google Hotels has certainly disrupted the battle for bookings that has been underway for over two decades, but while it offers benefits to both properties and OTAs, it doesn’t give either side an edge over the other. Rather, the two parties that benefit the most from the new platform are travellers, and Google itself. “Within months, Google has rolled out new features in flights and hotels that, we dare say, make it a convenient one-stop shop to book travel sans encumbrances. Given its dominance in search, hotels and online travel agencies are on another planet if they are not feeling wary.” — Skift More than anything, this latest innovation on Google’s part goes to show that accommodation providers can benefit from working together with OTAs — ensuring that their property is listed with as many agencies as is feasible, and that listings are consistently kept up to date. That way, their property has more opportunities to stay top-of-mind for travellers, even if they are not inclined to book direct. Read about how to embrace the Online Travel Agent After all, as Skift's Dennis Schaal explained, when hints of Google’s intentions were floating around back in October 2018, “when it comes to Google and its hotels redesign, few things are all or nothing. TripAdvisor can worry that Google now has more traveler photos and reviews, but some of them are from TripAdvisor. Hotel websites and phone numbers get featured, but clicking on a book button brings customers to an online travel agency site. In travel, it’s never winner take all.”

Metasearch Management Software Category Overview

What is hotel metasearch management software?
Effective metasearch and digital marketing campaigns help hoteliers drive revenue, attract new customers, and achieve greater business goals. The tools and services provided by a metasearch management software enable travel brands to maximize their digital reach. This in turn, allows them to grow their business and increase their profitability.

For info on metasearch and hotel advertising technology trends, questions that you should ask vendors and more download the 2021 Hoteliers Guide to Hotel Metasearch Software
How can metasearch management software improve profitability and efficiency?
  • It can help you attract new customers: Metasearch users are open to new experiences and are interested in finding a hotel that best meets their needs. They are typically open to trying new brands, which means that the majority of bookings that occur through metasearch are net new customers. Metasearch drives incremental traffic.
  • Strong metasearch advertising is part of a healthy booking mix: Once a user finds your hotel listing, you, the advertiser, own the customer experience. This gives you the opportunity to create a meaningful relationship and drive direct bookings, rather than relying on a reseller or travel agency.
  • Improves marketing efficiency: Metasearch is one of the most efficient digital acquisition channels. A well managed metasearch campaign will improve the efficiency of your digital marketing investment, driving higher impact and a reliable return on ad spend.
What are the most important features of metasearch management software?
  • Robust Reporting: Metasearch campaigns can have hundreds of thousands of data points and complex bidding layers. You’ll want the ability to access reporting that is robust, customizable, and in alignment with your internal numbers and business goals. 
  • Bid Management: Automated bidding features allow you to apply the best bidding model to fit your company’s goals, constraints, and data. This gives you the freedom to choose exactly how to bid for your campaigns and implement custom algorithms to maximize results. 
  • Custom Labels: Labeling or tagging features allow campaign managers to set both automated and one-off grouping of properties based on any custom value. If you’re managing metasearch for hundreds or even hundreds of thousands of properties, labels are a necessary feature for organizing your campaigns and identifying trends. 
  • Property Content Management: Reporting that is informed by rich property-level data, enables you to add geographic context to broad reports and bring in extremely granular hotel attributes for a more detailed analysis.
  • Intelligent Targeting: Audience targeting involves setting bids for specific groups of customers. The ability to segment your metasearch campaigns by audience is an important feature for reaching your target customers with your ads.
What makes great metasearch management software?
Critical to the success of your metasearch campaigns is knowing how much to spend (based on your goals), where to spend it, while also being able to make changes and adapt as market dynamics change.  Great hotel metasearch management software will help you increase direct bookings, boost ROAS (return on ad spend) and drive incremental revenue for your hotel properties.

To learn more about how to distinguish between metasearch management software providers download the 2021 Hoteliers Guide to Hotel Metasearch Software
What is the typical pricing for metasearch management software?
Most technology providers will charge a percentage of advertising spend. This can range from 4-8% (or lower) based on the volume of spend that flows through a platform and the amount of services that a customer requires.
How long does it usually take for a hotel to implement new metasearch management software?
Metasearch bid management and connectivity, while separate services, are dependent on one another. In your search for a bid management provider, you’ll want to mitigate risk by not requiring a big change to your connectivity.
Although every implementation situation is unique, you can generally expect a full implementation to take anywhere from 2 to 4 weeks from start to launch. Here is an example of what steps may be involved in the process: (1) Share hotel info with the technology vendor (2) Determine how internal analytics will be provided Work with metasearch publishers to launch campaigns (3) Technology vendor completes backend build (4) Grant technology vendor access to click/cost reporting. Providing data to the technology vendor in a consistent manner (both in time and format) will help facilitate a smooth implementation.