Avvio’s take: With the hospitality industry still struggling from the ongoing impact of COVID-19, Google has created a new data insights tool, focusing on tourism and travel demand. We take you through the ins and outs of each tool so that you can start forecasting demand for your hotel.
The beginning of 2021 has been off to a rough start, with most of us still in Lockdowns. But, with light at the end of the tunnel in the form of vaccines, we’re beginning to see some definite semblance of travel demand returning. While 2021 might not be the boom we were hoping for (we can expect more of that in 2022 once vaccines have been fully rolled out), Google has stepped up to the challenge to help the hospitality industry with what they know best – data.
Stepping further into the online travel space, Google launched Travel Insights, a new suite of tools at the end of 2020 designed to help hospitality businesses “reach global travellers at every stage of their journey”. The tools, each designed with a specific hospitality sector in mind, are a welcome aid from the tech giant:
- Destination Insights – gives users insight into tourism interest & demand for both domestic and international destinations, allowing them to focus their marketing for specific audiences
- Hotel Insights – Gives hoteliers in-depth insight into where demand is changing and increasing, helping hotels determine when to ramp up their marketing efforts, and who to target.
- Travel Analytics Center – currently only available to Google’s commercial partners, this tool allows users to combine their data with Google’s, giving a more tailored and specific outlook on-demand data and insights.
In this article, we’ll take you through the first two tools:
The first is Destination Insights, which gives users insight into travel demand for destinations, as well as how demand is changing in different origin countries.
Why Do I Need To Use Destination Insights?
By giving insights into how travel demand has changed year-over-year, users will be able to know when to begin preparing for new campaigns and potential increased demand, based on previous years’ data. In the chart below, we can see how inbound travel demand from the United States into Ireland has changed over the last year:
This tool is likely to be particularly useful for two key areas within the industry:
- Tourism boards – destination insights can help tourism and government boards make informed marketing decisions based on changing demand.
- Hoteliers – the hospitality industry will be able to determine how demand is changing in the minds of international customers.
By examining the data, users can estimate potential increases in travel demand for both air travel & accommodation, and allow them to decide when, how & where to communicate with potential future guests.
Hotel Insights is an extremely useful tool that uses search data to allow hoteliers to gain insights into who is searching for hotels in your area. It’s guaranteed to be extremely useful for hoteliers in 2021, particularly with the uncertainty of travel possibilities, by helping hotels identify emerging trends and changes in demand across the international markets.
Taking a closer look at the Northern Ireland market in the below chart, Google tells us that demand has dropped 50% – 75%.
While this may be a grim statistic for January 2021, we know that this tool will help us to determine when demand begins to increase, and then when hotels can begin to ramp up their marketing efforts to reach that target market throughout the year.
Hotel Insights also allows us to review search interest for domestic and international travel, helping us to explore inbound markets in more detail.
For example, for England, we can see that over 90% of their search interest is domestic:
By further investigating, Google also allows us to see the other top inbound markets by search interest, and also gives us an overview of year-over-year changes.
So, now that we’ve discovered that there’s been a change in demand for the English market and decreases from the usual markets, we know that hotels in England now have to target domestic guests more vigorously. To help with this, Google provides resources & links to useful articles to assist hotels capture this new demand that wasn’t there before.
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