In May of 2020 I discussed the need to relaunch PPC for the travel industry and in September of this year I discussed how the industry has changed and how PPC strategy needs to pivot accordingly. As we enter the holiday season, the busiest travel time of the year pre-COVID, the travel industry continues to evolve – and struggle. More people are searching and in the end, more people are traveling, but every advertising dollar counts in the race to win market share, solidify bookings and return to profitability.
Year Over Year Trends: What’s Changed
Private Vacation Rentals Are Booked Months in Advance
As I mentioned in September, hotels are now struggling to compete with home vacation rentals as the demand for home vacation rentals surges, and some travelers perceive private vacation rentals safer than traditional hotel stays. The benefit hotels now have is vacation rentals are booking one, two, sometimes many more months in advance, leaving travelers who are not planning out so far in advance with a shorter list of accommodation options. As holiday travel continues through the pandemic, and a comfortableness sets in, more travelers look to book hotels. “Hotels near me”, once the highest performing keyword during the height of the pandemic, has given way for those looking to travel various destinations across the United States, especially as holiday season nears.
Hotel Searches Return to 2019 Levels
This graph shows…