It looks like Google is at it again, this time quietly releasing some exciting new hotel search features. If you haven’t noticed yet, Google’s local 3 pack got a bit of a face lift in the last few days. A new filter “More” has been introduced, which currently allows users to filter by “Zagat Rated” hotels.
If you are not familiar with Google’s filter system, here is how it works. A user starts by entering a search query, for example “hotels in Dallas”. Google shows the top results in the local 3 pack, and the user can then narrow their search by selecting from the four filters.
The first filter available is “price”, where Google shows four different price groupings per query. These price groupings are not static, but isntead vary based off of market room night costs and the properties available. The filter allows users to select the maximum price they are willing to spend.
The second filter available is “rating” and is powered by Google reviews. The rating filter allows users to set a minimum quality they are willing to consider as opposed to a maximum price. These three categories do not vary between search queries.
The third filter is “hotel class”. This filter works the same way the rating filter does, the only difference being the source of the score. While ratings are powered by user reviews, hotel class is the result of an aggregation of multiple third party data sources.
The final and newest filter available is “More”. Currently this filter allows users to narrow their searches to hotels that are “Zagat Rated”.
Once a user selects a filter they are redirected to the local universal listings page. Users can then continue to narrow their search with the same filters, now available at the top of the listings page.
After a user is finished filtering and clicks on the hotel they wish to book they are redirected to the hotel details page, where all of the offers from advertisers will be listed. Something interesting we noticed is that the price filter will not necessarily remove an advertiser from the final search result. For example, I filtered my search to rooms in Las Vegas for below $125. When I selected Santa Fe Station I was served multiple listing priced above my filter.
We expect that Google will continue to iterate on their filtering system. We would theorize that the “More” filter has a lot of room to grow, potentially allowing users to filter by the amenities available or whether or not promotional pricing is available. Google is continuing to make the hotel experience more user friendly and more powerful, which will likely lead to a higher adoption rate and increased volume. We are excited to see what happens next and as always will share what we find here!