Be visible on Google Maps – let your Customers find you!

Be visible on Google Maps – let your Customers find you!

30 May 2016Milena Kurek

2004 brought a vast change for Google as it decided to carry out a global reorganization of the location resources. The first step was taking over the brand Keyhole dealing with digital maps, which in turn led to launching Google Maps and Google Earth in 2005. Today the Maps provide us with all the information on traffic jams, public transport as well as pictures from the street level, and the Earth allows us to explore the oceans and even the Moon! Thus, what should Hoteliers know about the Google Maps?

Why is the visibility of your hotel on the Google Maps so significant?

If you want to know the answer, read the following article.

“The mission of Google is to reorder the world of information so that it becomes widely available and useful”.

Without Google Maps we as Internet users actually feel like children in the midst, for this tool makes our lives a great deal easier, especially when planning a travel. Having a smartphone with access to the Internet is now enough to make us feel completely as ease, even if we are heading for a city which we have never visited before.

Why should your hotel be visible in the Google Maps ?

Apart from the obvious issues such as:

  • Location display – thus, helping your guests arrive at the hotel,
  • Availability of information about the object,
  • Gaining credibility and confidence,

there are also other important aspects which in my opinion justify the fact why you should care about the visibility of your hotel on the Google Maps:

Base

If your Hotel does not have a business card on Google Maps yet, here’s the link when you can easily create it: https://www.google.pl/business/

Where will your business card be visible? 

  • After entering the query concerning the hotel brand 

 

A huge advantage is a presentation of the hotel on the first page in the search engine. We will never gain such a large space with the AdWords campaign. By combining an active advertising, a business card and a natural link to the web page, we will maximize the space on the first page of Google. It means that the Customer is more likely to visit your website, instead of rather using an intermediary portal.

  • When you click on the map – as a marker

 

When choosing a hotel, customers often check the location of several different objects, comparing them with each other, and eventually choosing the one which in their opinion suits the case best. An active business card on the map, together with a check mark and the possibility of calculating the distance from key locations will help you show your hotel even better and encourage potential customers to stay.

  • After entering keywords relating to a specific location

The hotel is shown depending on the location phrases entered into the engine, and that is mostly influenced by its location (e.g. whether it’s in the city centre or on the outskirts) and primarily depends on the activities associated with the positioning. Companies dealing with the task are perfectly aware of the great value which business cards on Google Maps bear for the visibility of service in the scope of local phrases. For this reason they keep on optimizing it.

What does the business card inform you about? 

Business Card of Google Maps provides all the essential information such as:

  • Object categorisation,
  • Address,
  • Phone contact,
  • Pictures,
  • Redirecting to the webpage,
  • Redirecting to navigation,
  • Customer feedback.

So, let’s suppose we already have an active and completed business card in Google Maps.

So how to boost the visibility of business cards in Google Maps?

That’s the tough issue of positioning. Probably each of us has already gathered better or worse experiences with the natural positioning. One thing is certain, though  – this is not a simple and fast process.

Google Search still changes its algorithms in order to achieve the best match results to be displayed according to the expectations of the web users. Recently it has been paying a lot of attention to the local results.

What can we do to improve the hotel visibility in the scope of local phrases?

  • First of all, ask a professional company which deals with positioning to take care of yours service and business card because that’s our basis here,

But in addition to this you can actively support their activities by:

  • Updating the data in the business cards of Google Maps,
  • Suggesting and indicating the hotel location in the business card description,
  • Actively getting of comments/reviews in the business card,
  • Replying to all the comments,
  • Suggesting the location on the hotel website,
  • Redirecting customers to our website from other valuable webpages,

E.g. President/Director/Specialist from the Hotel is interviewed by a well- known portal – make sure that apart from the signature of the person giving the interview there is also a link to your web page.

By doing so, you will provide a great support for the company positioning your hotel website in the scope of local results.

So, once having started the topic of changes introduced by Google, let us focus now on another important element that appeared at the end of 2015. Namely, the business cards in Google Maps started showing the option of online reservation:

 

This is a new form of Google Hotel Ads, already presented in this article. You will find there a number of reasons why you should start using Google Hotel Ads.

Note: If there is no active advertising of the Hotel, the competition is unbeatable and users go straight to their website.

To sum up, if it is:

  • “Our” Hotel, 
  • Users search our brand, 
  • Our business card is displayed, 

So there should be a good ad present – our ad 🙂

8 years of my experience in marketing have taught me one important principle – integrate actions and use various means to communicate. Do not focus on one channel, believing it to be the source of best converts.

As an analysis of multi-channel funnels confirms that the best strategy is a synergy of actions and testing of all possible options. We are not able to predict beyond all doubt how the customer booking a stay in our hotel will behave.

Yet, using the business card of Google Maps is always strongly recommended. 

Integration of business cards with the Google AdWords campaign by location extensions

How do the location extensions work?

It allows you to show the address of your hotel in AdWords. Smartphones advertisement may contain buttons for obtaining advice how to reach the hotel. Important remark: the CPC (Cost per click) in case of advertising with the location extensions is the same as in case of the standard CPC.

The benefits from the presence of your hotel in the Google Maps are obvious:

  • Larger advertising space,
  • Displaying the hotel address – which not only encourages your customers to pay a visit, but also excludes unnecessary clicks of the persons interested in a different location,
  • Increased CTR (Click-Through-Rate) – an average rise of 10%.

If you combine all the possible forms of boosting the business card and high visibility of your hotel in the search engine together, it will make your hotel much more recognizable and better associated with the region. So, once having chosen the location, the guest will surely land on your website, and that’s what we aim for, ain’t it? 😉

Good luck with your Google Maps. I wish you all what’s best for your hotels.

Milena Kurek, Account Manager