Booking.com buys Google Adwords to drive traffic away from your website
Dear Fellow Innkeepers,
OTA dominance has gotten out of control. Have you noticed that unless you pay for Google Adwords, the OTAs are aggressively targeting each and every property, Booking.com in particular, related to premium search engine placement. This pushes your website listing lower on the Search Engines. Repeat Guests have explained that once they search your property name, most likely the first thing that is listed is a Google Adword that has been purchased by the OTAs, Booking.com in particular. This listing looks exactly like you because the property description, photos, everything looks like its your property.The confused consumer immediately clicks through that first listing to make a reservation for your property, only to realize after the reservation has been made, that it's actually a third party. No wonder OTAs are aggressively pushing for non-refundable reservations. It's too late for the consumer and too late for you as the property owner to even have the opportunity to reach the consumer until it's too late. Word to the wise, buy Google Adwords so your property will be listed first! The website owner has priority over the OTAs when it comes to Google Adwords.
For us we don't mind about this. We look it as an advantage and thank you Booking.com to help us promote/advertise our property.
Yes, everyone want to have guest book direct with them but what is your direct booking percentage. I am sure most of us the number is very small. It better to keep this marketing budget spend on Google adword to use on other part. As you never can beat OTA money and the profit margin is really don't worst with it.
I must agree with Bandara Hotels & Resorts in this particular case.
1) we are paying BDC to promote our biz and sell rooms for us, I EXPECT them to earn this fee! If they could not get their site above my own (I use very basic tools) it would be a poor result.
2) if you are with BDC etc. it means your website is not sufficient (I know mine isn't) to negate their services
3) Money talks! If we were as wealthy as BDC we would do exactly the same to protect/promote/drive our business model and increase profit.