An important distinction travelers make when booking a hotel room is the designation of how many people will be staying in the hotel room. Business travel tends to be single occupancy, where family/leisure travelers often have multiple occupants per room. All metasearch publishers except Google have offered an occupancy designation for a while. This can be an important indicator for hoteliers depending on what sort of travelers they are trying to target, and it’s important for the traveler since the room rate varies, typically, based on the occupancy. Providing the most accurate traveler information and qualifying traffic before reaching the booking site is an important tool metasearch can offer. Recently, one of our analysts noticed a new ad experience on Google.de where users were able to designate single, double, triple, or quadruple occupancy within the knowledge panel.
An interesting observation about this roll out is no advertisers that we were able to find transmitted single occupancy rates. When no single occupancy rates were available, Google had a callout showing that the rate was for two guests, and the auction behaved the same as the default double occupancy.
This is the default view for Google Hotel Ads. Since all rates shown are for double occupancy, there is no designation declaring that this is a double occupancy rate.
For this specific property, it does not appear as though any provider is transmitting triple or quadruple occupancy rates. Because of this, there were no rates shown for any advertiser. Google did provide a link encouraging the user to search for double occupancy.
Seeing this view made us want to investigate additional properties, to see if we could find any examples of advertisers exposing non-conventional occupancies for Google. We were able to find a single provider (Booking.com) showing greater than double occupancy for a particular property.
For now, it appears this test is targeted only at users in Germany. If this test were to roll out on a larger scale though, smart advertisers would be able to compete in an auction with highly qualified traffic for low CPCs. This could provide a nice incremental bump to your metasearch campaign and help drive deep funnel consumers to your site. While we still have some lingering questions about the scale and the future implications of this test, our team will continue to monitor and share any changes we notice in the Hotel Ads environment.