When a hotel wants to control its online presence, it can act differently: by controlling its natural, paid referencing, its visibility on OTAs or on metasearchs (these are meta-engines for hotel search) ...
We will focus here on the difference between paid referencing like Google Ads (formerly Google Adwords) and metasearch sites like Trivago, Google Hotel Ads, Wego, Kayak.
Google Ads is Google's online advertising platform that allows you to create online ads to reach audiences interested in the products and services you offer. These ads will appear at the top of a Google search results page and possibly on partner sites.
A hotel meta-search engine or hotel metasearch allows consumers to compare hotel rates from various online travel agencies (OTAs) and other booking sites, all in one place. The rates and availability of a hotel can be found, for example, on the official hotel website, the websites of OTAs Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Orbitz and Booking.com. When a potential customer visits one of these sites to find a hotel in a specific city or region, that hotel and its rates will appear.
To optimize its direct revenue stream, there is no choice to be made between these two channels. Google ads redirect the customer to your hotel's website, while metasearchs compare the different sites distributing your rooms and redirect the customer to the offer of their choice. These are complementary actions that will allow you to increase reservations on your website.