Flywheel News | August 2023 Hotel Digital Marketing News | GCommerce

  1. Google Sending Out Alerts Re: UA Data Processing

Months after what was expected to be the official deadline of when Google UA would top processing data, account owners are getting alerts that their UA accounts have officially stopped processing new data. Have you noticed this in your Google UA accounts yet?

  1. TikTok Officially Announces Search Ads

According to TikTok, 58% of users discover new brands or products on the platform. Now, advertisers can capitalize on this even more with the introduction of the search ads toggle. This feature is automatically enabled with the creation of an in-feed campaign but can be disabled if desired. Learn more about this new feature and where it appears on the platform here.

  1. Instagram Launches Multi-Advertiser Placements, to the Display of Advertisers (And Users)

If you’ve scrolled through Instagram recently, you’ve probably noticed a new cluster of 4 ads lumped together in what is officially called the Multi-Advertiser placement. Although CPMs with this placement might be less expensive, the fear is that users will quickly start skipping over them, and they’ll provide little value to advertisers. Learn more about this new feature and how to opt out here.   

  1. Metasearch Products for Any Property in Any Market

As metasearch continues to expand into one of your most important channels for direct revenue, it’s essential to understand your choices in terms of pricing models. Metadesk offers a variety of products and pricing models designed to fit any property’s unique situation and market conditions. Learn more here.

  1. Google Business Profile Rolling Out Social Links 

Up until now, companies haven’t been able to manage or edit social links shown in Google Business Profile listings. Google is now adding this functionality as an attribute in Google Business Profiles, and it’s rolling out now. Learn more.

  1. Learn Why GA4 Data Might Not Be Matching Up in Different Reporting

A common question and source of confusion that GA4 presents is when data doesn’t quite add up the same when drilling down into different areas of the UI or even with the API data from the platform. We found this blog to offer a lot of great common reasons why you’re seeing different metric counts when viewing the data in different areas of the UI.

  1. Google Announces Changes to Visibility of HowTo and FAQ Markup

Google has announced changes to HowTo and FAQ markup visibility in the SERP. FAQ will only be shown for well-known government and health workshops while HowTo will only be shown for desktop users. This could significantly impact sites, including travel-related ones, that have capitalized on FAQ-rich snippet visibility over the years. Learn more about these changes here.

  1. Google Search Generative Experience OFFICIALLY Rolling Out Links to Sources

This is a big, long-awaited change for SEOs and search marketers. Up until now, Google’s Search Generative experience has failed to feature links to sources and drive well-deserved traffic to the source sites. As of August 30th, when you see an arrow next to information in the experience, you can click it to see relevant sources and easily visit those pages. Learn more here.

Flywheel News | July 2023 Hotel Digital Marketing News | GCommerce

  1. Some Google Universal Analytics Accounts Still Processing Data

Even though Google claimed all UA accounts would stop processing data on June 30th, 2023, we've found that most accounts still show data flowing. The current notice that appears when accessing accounts states that the account will "stop processing data very soon". It appears that the end of data in UA is more of a rollout than a hard cut-off date for all accounts.

  1. Twitter Rebrands to X

The bluebird is gone. Elon Musk has rebranded Twitter to X and states it's "more than just a name change" but a plan to recreate it into an "everything app". Will this hurt or help the platform's success? Read more here.

  1. Meta’s Threads (Twitter Competitor) Launches July 5th 

Are you among the more than 100 million people who signed up for Threads? Learn all about this new social media Twitter (X) competitor in this in-depth blog from our in-house social media experts.

  1. Tips for Finding Your Hotel’s Target Audience 

How do you know where to advertise or what to message if you don't first identify the best target audience for your hotel? In this insightful blog post, journey through finding your hotel's target audience.

  1. TikTok launches text posts 

A content format previously unavailable to brands is now live on TikTok. Brands can now share text posts on the social media platform. Learn more about new features for text posts, such as stickers, tags, sound, and more, here.

  1. Uncover Metasearch Bid Modifications You Should Be Using 

Did you know you can set bid modifications on segments such as length of stay, days to arrival, and more within your Google Hotel Ads? Learn more about these bid modifiers and how to apply them to your hotel's Google Hotel Ads campaigns.

  1. Instagram Updates Reels

Instagram is launching updates for Reels with the added bonus that Instagram Reels will now also be served on Facebook to offer more reach than ever for these video placements. Learn more here

  1. Should You Use Google Paid Search Ads for Your Restaurant? 

There are many different ad placement and campaign options available to advertise your restaurant. Should Google paid search ads be at the top of your list? Read more in this Paid search ads test for restaurants.

Flywheel News | May 2023 Hotel Digital Marketing News | GCommerce

  1. June Marks The Last Month Google Universal Analytics Will Process Data

As you read this, you’re currently in the last month that data will flow into your Google Universal Analytics account. If you don’t have GA4 setup by now, there’s a good chance you won’t have any analytics data available for your site for website traffic past June 30th. Reach out to GCommerce today if you’re unsure or need assistance on where to start with your GA4 setup.

  1. Google Ads Sitelinks vs Promo Extensions For Short Term Deals - What’s Better?

In the world of Google Ads, ad extensions (now referred to as assets) give your valuable extra real estate and call-outs in the SERP. But which ones are better for advertising your hotel’s short term/flash sales, sitelinks or promotion extensions? Read more in one of our recent tests.

  1. Google Marketing Live Focuses on AI in 2023

As the industry continues to lean into AI, Google’s Marketing Live 2023 seemed to focus solely on it’s investment of incorporating AI into all facets of it’s products. Exciting announcements included AI generated campaign builds, helping to automatically create text and images and better match messaging to search queries. We’re also pretty excited to test out the newest campaign types announced at GML23, most notably the Demand Gen campaign type which seems to target a social media style ad placement and “will show across YouTube Shorts, YouTube in-stream, YouTube in-feed, Discover, and Gmail to drive conversions”.

  1. Hotel Metasearch Channels Overview

Overwhelmed with all the different metasearch options? Metasearch marketing has been a proven way to increase bookings for your hotel, but there are many options in this space. Check out this quick-start guide to determine the best option for your hotel. Learn more here.

  1. How To Choose The Best Marketing KPIs

Not sure what KPIs you should be focusing on to judge the success of your hotel marketing campaigns? Read our blog post on how to choose the best marketing KPIs.

  1. Meta Announces AI Powered Ad Tools

Similar to Google’s use of AI, Meta is also incorporating AI into it’s platforms and tools to help provide more personalized advertising as well as give advertisers more text and image AI tools. Learn more here.

  1. FAQs for the Hotel Digital Marketer

Find the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions in hotel digital marketing in this insightful blog. What questions would you add to the list?

  1. Bing Chat Adds Visuals To Travel Queries 

Bing Chat has now added more visuals to travel queries with links directly into Bing’s Travel Planner.  Our hopes is that this means more impressions for the high ROAS yet low volume Bing Hotel ads placements. Learn more here.

Flywheel News | March 2023 Hotel Digital Marketing News | GCommerce

  1. Less than 100 Days Until Google UA Stops Collecting Data - Are You Ready? 

On July 1, 2023 Google Universal Analytics will stop collecting data for your website. After that, any historical data within Universal Analytics will only be available for around 6 months (final date TBD by Google). That’s less than 3 months away. Are you ready?

  1. TikTok CEO Goes in Front of Congress Over Security Concerns 

The United States government has security concerns with TikTok and in previous months has banned the use of the platform by government run DMOs. This month, the CEO of TikTok went in front of Congress over security issues with the platform. Learn more here.

  1. Instagram Rolling Out New Ad Placement Types 

Instagram is rolling out 2 new ad placement types that caught our eye. The first is Reminder Ads, that could be a good option for event or offer reminders and the second is a placement for ads in the search results. Check out the news here.

  1. Meta Rolls Out Paid Verification 

Meta has rolled out a new fee based verification service that claims to offer enhanced support and potentially more reach for around $15/month. Is it worth it? The jury is still out and will require more testing. 

  1. Microsoft Ads Broad Match Modifier Keywords Now Serving as Broad Match 

We hope you’re keeping an eye on all these search engine announcements! The latest change coming from Microsoft Ads on match types is that any broad match modified keywords in your accounts will now be treated as broad. We highly recommend auditing your accounts to ensure your structure matches this new change so that performance is not impacted negatively.

  1. GA4 Rolling Out Custom Channel Groups 

GA4 continues to evolve it’s capabilities, this time with a long awaited custom channel group option. Up until now, GA4 accounts were limited to the platform’s decided grouping by channel for each user session source - which did not match up with UA groupings at all. Now you have the power to organize your traffic sources into your preferred channel groupings. Read more here.

  1. GPT-4 Launches 

The latest in the AI race, OpenAI’s GPT-4 launched in March. In order to access the latest version, you must be signed up for the ChatGPT plus subscription service. You can also play around with it when using Bing Chat. Read a breakdown of everything you need to know here.

8. Google Ads Vs Google Hotel Ads: Do You Really Need Both?
If you’ve been a loyal Google paid search advertiser all these years and you’re not running Google Hotel Ads via metasearch advertising then you’re losing out on a significant portion of the Google hotel search ecosystem - one that could be driving a substantial amount of direct revenue for your hotel. Learn more here.

Flywheel News | February 2023 Hotel Digital Marketing News | GCommerce

  1. ChatGPT Takes Over The Feeds

Unless you’re living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about ChatGPT at this point. Although originally released back in November of 2022, interest around the platform really took off in February as Microsoft showcased it’s inclusion of the conversational chatbot technology in it’s search engine and Google responded with it’s own introduction of Bard. Now, everyone from students to coders to copywriters and beyond are learning ways to use the platform to help with research and writing. An incredible showcase of AI capabilities,ChatGPT’s output can still be inaccurate and a bit elementary in it’s writing style. We encourage everyone to try it out, but proceed with caution. The content it produces can still be fraught with errors and use a bit of finessing to use usable for marketing purposes.

  1. Google Announces Bard (it’s answer to ChatGPT)

The word on the street is that Bing’s announcement of using ChatGPT in it’s search engine caused a “code red” at Google. Not too long after, Google announced Bard, it’s answer to conversational AI in search. Just like ChatGPT, Google’s initial introduction of Bard to the world showed the AI providing an incorrect response to a question. While Google has used the power of AI as part of it’s algorithm in how to rank pages in it’s search results for years, this product takes aim at the ease with which ChatGPT can provide information to users. Want to be prepared for Bard, Bing ChatGPT and more from a search perspective? Continue to focus on adding quality content to your website, focus on building out Local SEO strategies and tactics and dig into these platforms’ other products like Google Hotel Ads and Bing Hotel Ads. As a hotel, it’s time to get even more serious about providing quality content, answers and information to potential customers and search engines.

  1. Microsoft Unveils Lodging Solutions

Showing it’s continued focus to follow in the steps of Google’s success in travel, Microsoft has announced expanded offerings to it’s lodging products with property promotion ads, hotel price ads, hotel price ads with room bundles, bing maps, bing travel hub and property promotion ads with vacation rentals. Hopefully this brings more impressions and visibility to highly profitable hotel ads throughout Bing’s ecosystem.

  1. Should You Be Using Google Hotel Ads Bid Adjustments?

To be successful in maximizing revenue production via Google Hotel Ads, you must be optimizing your campaigns with all the levers provided in Google Ads. Learn how we put them to the test in our client accounts.

  1. Hotel Marketing in a Down Economy: Part 1 & Part 2

Whatever you do, just don’t say the “r” word. Dig into our reading of the tea leaves with our portfolio data insights as well as the strategies to best position your hotel for when things go south. Check out Part 1 and Part 2 of Hotel Marketing in a Down Economy.

  1. [E-Book] Metasearch Advertising Pro Tips

Learn the metasearch advertising techniques the pro's use to boost your direct bookings. View the full E-Book here. 

  1. Hotel Metasearch Basics

Unsure of what hotel metasearch is? Don’t fret, our marketing experts have broken it down in this Hotel Metasearch Basics blog.

  1. 2023 Digital Marketing Trends To Watch

Just in case you missed it, check out a compilation of the top trends our hotel digital marketing experts have on their minds for 2023.

Flywheel News | January 2023 Hotel Digital Marketing News | GCommerce

  1. Google Optimize To Be Discontinued (Moving into GA4)

To the dismay of marketers everywhere, Google announced that it will be discontinuing its UX testing tool, Google Optimize, on September 30th. Google plans on providing a new solution within GA4. Learn more here.

  1. Yandex Search Ranking Factors Leaked

Even though it’s not the Google search ranking factors that were leaked, the recent leak of Yandex search ranking factors provides some interesting insights into area’s of focus you should consider testing and evaluating for your website’s SEO. 

  1. Google Search Announces Debut of Chatbot Features Later this Year

Credit it to the Google “code red” about ChatGPT, but the search engine announced that it will debut chatbot features later this year within Google search. Read more here.

  1. Google Search Trends for 2022

I think we’re all eager to know what trends to capitalize for marketing in 2023. One of the best ways is to take a quick look back with Google’s year in Search 2022. Top trends for 2023 include Value, evaluated; Aid and allyship and revising priorities. All of these have very specific tie in’s to travel marketing. People want to feel represented in ads, they want ways to alleviate stress and they are seeking experiences that provide great value. How can your hotel incorporate these trends into your ad messaging? 

5. Check out Metadesk

Globally, huge amounts of hotel advertising budgets are shifting to metasearch advertising campaigns. And with the deprecation of cookies and 3rd party tracking, it makes complete sense. 📈📈📈 Learn more at

  1. Reports Show Facebook Usage Is Up 

Even with the rise of TikTok’s popularity, Wall Street Journal reported that usage and time spent on Facebook was up worldwide over the past year. Maybe it’s because of TikTok? The rise in usage could be attributed to increase in Reels consumption. Have you invested in your hotel’s short form video assets yet? If not, 2023 is the year no matter what social platform you focus your efforts on.

  1. 6 Ways Your Hotel Can Utilize Facebook’s Lead Generation Tool in 2023 

Are you looking for solutions to increase your hotel’s email database size, drive more wedding business or improve your remarketing ad performance? Discover new ways to drive more revenue with Facebook’s Lead Generation tool in 2023.

  1. The Power of Brand Collaborations 

Looking for new ways to inject fresh, excitement into your brand messaging or expand your reach to like minded audiences? It’s time you looked into the power of brand collaborations. Learn more here with some great examples to get you started.