An abstract representation of a computer showing the google search window

The Future of Google Search: What It Means for Luxury Hospitality Marketing

The Future of Google Search: What It Means for Luxury Hospitality Marketing

In this insight we'll explore the changes, focusing on the new AI-generated search overview, generative AI in ad creation, and enhanced data-driven placements. We'll look at the implications of these changes for luxury hospitality marketing strategies.

In the competitive landscape of luxury hospitality, understanding the latest digital marketing trends is crucial for maintaining your hotel's competitive edge. During Google's Marketing Live I/O keynote some significant updates to Google Search and Google Ads were announced. These changes, mostly AI related, promise to impact how your hotel can be discovered online.

AI-Generated Search Overview for Hotels

One of the most notable changes is the introduction of AI-generated search overviews. These overviews will show up at the top of search results, and use generative AI to create personalised and targeted search results offering users a customised search experience. 

AI overviews are designed to provide users with personalised and targeted information right at the top of search results, often pushing organic listings further down. This change means that luxury hotels might see a decrease in organic impressions, which might require a stronger focus on website optimisations to gain back some result places.

For luxury hotels, this may result in fewer overall impressions of your direct property link, but those who do see your link are more likely to find search results tailored to them specifically. This could mean less but more valuable clicks.

However, this personalization brings new challenges in maintaining brand visibility, also known as brand lift. While the specifics of how to consistently end on top organically are not clear yet, optimising your website for Google's crawlers will most likely be essential. You can check your website scores at sites like Google's analysis tool . If your site has low scores (anything under 80) especially for SEO and Performance, our experts would love to help you make your website future-proof. Do not hesitate to get in touch with us here.

Generative AI for Hotel Ad Creation

Generative AI has now officially entered the arena. Crafting effective ad creatives used to be a manual process that required significant time and expertise (as well as testing testing and more testing). Google punished ads that had ad scores below Excellent. Google's new generative AI tools are set to change this by assisting in generating ad creatives. 

This AI-driven approach promises to improve the relevance and quality of your ads, likely resulting in higher quality scores. Furthermore, ad creatives can be automatically adapted to fit changing search trends. Google promises that these improvements to quality and relevance will improve the ad-match performance by at least 10%.

Higher quality scores can lead to better ad performance, as Google's system rewards high-quality ads with better placements and lower costs per click. For luxury hotels, this means more efficient ad spend and greater visibility among potential guests. Embracing these AI tools, as highlighted in the Google Keynote, can streamline your creative process, allowing your marketing team to focus on strategic initiatives while ensuring your ads remain compelling and effective.

Google's AI directly integrated into the campaign manager

Data-Driven Placements: Optimising Hotel Audience Targeting

Google’s AI will now consider a broader range of data to optimise ad placements. This enhancement means that the more data you can provide to Google AI, the better it can target your ads to the most relevant audiences. For luxury hotels, this might mean better placement precision and more effective audience targeting, ensuring your ads reach potential guests who are most likely to convert. We've seen similar technology enter Performance Max campaigns last year, which seems to help ads convert better.

Furthermore, Google’s recent updates underscore a shift to generating even more advertising revenue. As noted by Philipp Schindler, Google's Chief Business Officer, the aim is to create more opportunities for businesses through higher reach and engagement on ads. This presents an opportunity for all advertisers, and means that luxury hotels will likely need to adapt by investing more in paid advertising to ensure continued visibility in search results.

Other Major News for Hotels

Beyond the changes mentioned above, there are four others we want to highlight. We'll go in depth on these in future publications.

Changes to Google Lens will allow users to find items or hotels by pointing their camera at them. This feature can help potential guests discover your hotel simply by pointing their camera at your property, enhancing discoverability and engagement through innovative search methods.

Google Lens recognising anything it's pointed at including buildings

Changes to Merchant Center Next will provide specific offers to specific audiences and support moving and animated images. This enables more personalised marketing by delivering tailored offers to distinct audiences and using dynamic visuals to capture attention, thus increasing booking rates.

Changes to Smart Bidding & Audiences now allow a link between your customer relations systems managing guests' loyalty statusses directly into ads to personalise ad offers, and re-engages people who are engaged on any platform outside of Google. This enhances ad personalization and re-engagement, ensuring that ads are highly relevant to past engagers and loyalty program members, boosting conversion rates.

New Generative Reports use the marketing mix model with Meridian for better attribution and analysis of the sales funnel and various touch points leading up to conversions. This provides deeper insights into the effectiveness of marketing strategies and helps optimise the sales funnel by accurately attributing conversions to the correct touchpoints, improving overall marketing efficiency.

Embracing the Future of Google Search in Luxury Hospitality

The updates from Google Marketing Live 2024, Google I/O, and the Google Cloud Keynote mark a significant shift in how luxury hotels reach potential guests online. By understanding and strategically applying these changes, luxury hotels can enhance their visibility and performance in Google's ecosystem. Adopting AI and data-driven strategies will soon be important in optimising audience targeting and maximising ad effectiveness.

Staying informed and adaptable is key, and Influence Society is here to help you navigate these changes with confidence. Contact us today to learn more about how we can support your hotel’s success in the evolving digital landscape.

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