Google slowly turning into an OTA with "Deals" and "FIlters"
Richard Holden, a Google vice president of travel products, said hotel rates labeled as a “Deal” in the brand’s Google Hotel Ads get about twice as many bookings as rates that aren’t labeled as such.
So in response to a query on mobile for “hotels in Chicago,” Google labels the $169 rate from Secret Escapes for a July 24 stay at the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel Chicago as a Deal, and that compares to a $218 rate on Booking.com and the hotel website.GThe Hotel Deals feature, which is available on mobile and desktop and is not paid advertising, is part of a series of new product tweaks that Google is rolling out in Google Hotel Ads and Google Flights.
Holden said Google automatically identifies rates such as the one from Secret Escapes as a “Deal” when they involve a significant price reduction or are lower than historical prices.
“In our early tests, we’ve seen hotels marked as deals receive about twice as many bookings as other hotels,” Google states. “Partners cannot directly add the deal badge and the badge doesn’t affect ranking in search results.”
In the U.S., Google is also introducing Hotel Smart Filters, which enables consumers to filter hotel results based on price or ratings.
Moreover, with Book on Google, travelers can complete their reservations on Google, which is not the merchant of record.
For example, travelers can book a September 14 to 16 stay at Exchange Suites in Memphis, Tennessee [see image] without leaving Google on a mobile device.
In this instance, travelers enter their guest details on Google, choose a payment method through Google Wallet and then book the room.
Google is working directly with hotels and also intermediaries to ramp up Book on Google.