Guest feedback platform TrustYou has published the results of recent consumer research into how online travelers search for and book accommodations.
- 91% use search engines to find places to stay, with 81% preferring Google.
- 77% search by keywords relating to accommodation or location:
- 57% for hotels
- 49% for locations
- 31% for a combination of the two
- Top drivers of hotel booking decisions:
- Nightly rate
- "Trust score" (average review rating score)
- 88% eliminate hotels with trust score <3.
- 32% eliminate hotels with trust score <4.
- Following Google search, travelers are most likely (20%) to click a direct link to the hotel's Web site. (But 80% click something else.)
- Top 3 booking channels reported:
- 93% of respondents said they have used hotel booking engines, 84% have used meta-search engines.
- Preferred booking device:
- Desktop 66%
- Mobile 18%
- Tablet 16%
Demographics of the respondents:
- All said they had made at least 1 online leisure booking.
- Top booking selections:
- Hotels 86%
- Motels 34%
- Resorts 34%
- 65% female, 35% male
- 25-34 and 35-44 age groups predominated (approximately 50% combined share)
- Average household income $70K
Implications of results, as identified by TrustYou:
- Hoteliers need to pay attention to their findability on Google, in order to draw more lookers and bookers to their hotel Web site.
- Travelers are strongly influenced by hotel reviews, including those on Google, which are provided in part by TrustYou.
It takes work and money to get a hotel Web site to page one of Google search returns, even for searches on the property name. But it's worth it.