TravelAds tips and tricks to boost hotel bookings

To help you efficiently and effectively boost bookings and meet your advertising goals, our digital experts consistently analyze our exclusive first-party data. This data contains valuable insights including travel trends, market conditions, travel intent, and more. With your specific needs in mind, we then provide timely recommendations to inform your TravelAds Sponsored Listings campaigns.

By understanding the trends surrounding the travelers you’re trying to reach, you can set the right parameters, know when to scale your TravelAds campaign up or down and manage your spend with this flexible and cost-effective pay-per-click advertising solution. To ensure you’re maximizing campaign performance, real-time monitoring is available in your TravelAds dashboard for you to evaluate, optimize, and adapt your strategy as needed.

With billions of data points drawn from travelers using our 200+ websites and apps, the trends and insights we provide to you are not available anywhere else. Access to data like this is especially key now since advertisers can no longer rely on third-party cookies.

Also, our data around traveler trends can show you new ways to get noticed. Consider this: One trend for 2024 is travelers seeking out stays based on the mood and feel of a property. In fact, more than 90% of travelers say the vibe of a hotel is important when booking.*  

Want to highlight what a stay at your hotel feels like to help attract travelers? Showcase the vibe of your space by featuring memorable photography and tailoring your property’s listing with custom messaging. Because TravelAds listings are live at the same time as your organic listings, you have more freedom to experiment, and it allows for different views of your property between TravelAds and your organic listings. 

The insights provided on trends and traveler behavior can help advertisers and marketers determine how you want to show up to travelers to help increase your bookings. Let’s look at a few tips on maximizing your TravelAds strategy. 

Connect with eager travelers

Will you benefit from tour tourism?

Big events draw crowds of fans looking for places to stay while they’re in town, and by understanding that demand in advance, your hotel can be ready to welcome them.

Some are more obvious, like how hotels in Paris attracted increased global lodging bookings for summer 2024. With our quarterly insights on traveler trends and behaviors, we can help surface these opportunities for increased demand earlier based on our exclusive data.

Did you know that almost 70% of travelers are more likely than ever to travel to a concert outside their hometown?** As shared in our blog on the latest traveler trends, tour tourism causes an uptick in searches for locations hosting events. When Taylor Swift’s 2024 Eras Tour schedule was announced for Asia and Australia, travel searches for February-March 2024 increased by over 250% year over year (YOY) for the corresponding tour cities.** With this in mind, we can help you drive booked room nights with TravelAds and boost your visibility by drawing on travel intent data for your region. 

Using different Media Solutions products enabled us to capture several market opportunities and connect with travelers through all stages of their journey, ultimately driving a near 600% increase in room nights.

— Edoardo Dal Negro, Blinkup CEO 

We’re here to help you replicate our partners’ success and stand out across our 200+ websites and apps. One of our other tips for maximizing your TravelAds strategy is to leverage our sophisticated targeting capabilities to reach your goals. 

Target the right traveler

Run efficient and high-impact digital marketing campaigns

TravelAds targeting is based on real-time travel intent and demand data, which can help you identify the most valuable travelers for your hotel, like remote workers if you’re looking to increase longer stays or people booking multiple elements in one trip like hotel and airfare if you want to help lower your risk of cancellations. At the same time, our targeting approach can help you engage those travelers at key decision points along their booking journey. 

Our insights can help you identify travelers and develop defined audience segments like the ones mentioned above, and our understanding of travel intent can help you understand booking behaviors to be more successful. For example, our Q3 traveler search and booking data revealed that travelers are planning for both the short and long term.  

Globally, Q3 searches in the 0- to 21-day window increased by more than 5% quarter over quarter (QOQ), while the 22- to 30-day search window increased by over 10% QOQ. Share growth for the 0- to 21-day search window was driven by EMEA and North America (NORAM), both increasing 10% compared to the prior quarter. For travelers planning trips further ahead, searches in the 180+ day window increased by 20% QOQ, driven by a 75% QOQ increase in EMEA and a 20% QOQ increase in NORAM.**

To effectively reach your target audience, you need to understand travel intent details. If you want to reach EMEA travelers, knowing that we’re seeing large QOQ increases in the 180+ day window will help you be efficient in the timing of your targeting.

To help increase the likelihood of your ideal traveler seeing your ads, we offer bid enhancers that let you competitively bid based on length of stay, check-in window, and more.

For example, let’s say you want to target international travelers researching trips in Hawaii. Because visitors can only get there by plane, chances are these travelers are searching for both flights and hotels at the same time. They’re also likely to begin their trip search further out. With TravelAds, you can implement a bidding strategy that captures all these traits:

  • First, implement a package path bidding strategy to target those looking for flights and hotels. 
  • Second, target travelers searching 22 days out and beyond to reach them earlier in their booking journey
  • Lastly, increase your competitiveness for travelers coming from specific countries of origin. You can increase your bid for international travelers or get more granular by bidding differently depending on the country or point of origin. 

If you want to target domestic travelers, that’s easy, too. You can use bid enhancers to target travelers searching within the next two weeks or searching within a 100-mile radius — all these capabilities can help you capture those looking for a place to stay. 

The breadth of targeting we can provide by device, location, and more can be used by advertisers and marketers to reach different audiences, so if you’ve tried TravelAds targeting before, now is a great time to use these tips to help drive better results. 

Deliver the right message

Customize your ad content to drive demand

In addition to targeting, TravelAds makes it possible to enhance and optimize your message. By running TravelAds, you get double the exposure – your organic listing and your sponsored listing will run simultaneously. This means you can tell the story your organic listing can’t. 

Whether it’s highlighting your property’s key features, promoting package deals in conjunction with a package path bidding strategy, or something else, this is your chance to stand out. To achieve this, you can use customized ad copy and change your lead photo to match to help you get noticed. 

This can be especially impactful during the inspiration phase of a traveler’s purchasing journey, where we know that compelling photos and unique experiences appeal to travelers.

When targeting travelers abroad, you can also take advantage of our localization team to deliver copy in over 10 languages. This helps expand the reach of your message to markets around the world to attract global lodging bookings.

Maximize visibility in a competitive marketplace

Stand out and control your spend

Next, let’s discuss some tips for maximizing your TravelAds strategy by increasing your ads’ visibility. You could:

  • Enhance your bids based on your needs and the market. 
  • Utilize scheduled ads if you have planned downtime or upcoming promotions. 
  • Balance your bids with your budget by scaling up or down as needed. 

Speaking of budget, we also have a flexible payment option with Post Bill, a monthly invoicing function that makes it easier for advertisers to ensure they have adequate funds available to maintain the visibility they’re looking for. It doesn’t require an upfront commitment or pre-approval, and thanks to the monthly invoicing, you pay only for the clicks you receive that month. This means you can book rooms and generate revenue before your payment is due.

Many of our hotel partners have found success with Post Bill, including Hotel Effie Sandestin. Just a few weeks after switching payment methods, the hotel’s TravelAds campaign saw a threefold month-on-month increase in impressions. 

Another feature that makes TravelAds a cost-effective advertising solution is that only available rooms are shown, making sure that advertisers aren’t paying for rooms that can’t be booked.

TravelAds makes every dollar work harder.

Patrick Mitchell, VP, Brand and Ecommerce at Sonder 

Of course, partnering with Media Solutions doesn’t only give you access to self-service tools like TravelAds. You’ll also have access to a team of trusted advisors to help guide you along the way — from defining your campaign goals to helping you understand your ads’ performance so you can adjust as needed to reach your goals. 

These advisors are experts in your region and can share insights from our first-party data to help you create a successful strategy for your campaigns. Contact us to sign up or to reactivate your TravelAds account.  

*Expedia Group, Unpack ‘24, 2023 
**Expedia Group, Traveler Insights Q4 2023 

Headshot of Haley White at Expedia Group Media Solutions

Haley White

Senior Director, Hotel Strategic Accounts, Expedia Group Media Solutions

Haley is a senior director for strategic accounts with Expedia Group Media Solutions. She leads the team that creates and implements strategies to optimize marketing and revenue opportunities for our largest hotel partnerships. Haley is a member of the HSMAI Marketing Advisory Board, and is a graduate of Texas A&M University and lives in Dallas with her family.

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