Ahead of the festive season, marketers have begun to develop their marketing strategies. October through December are generally the biggest months for both travel and shopping. According to Google, mobile travel and shopping searches are already up nearly 30% year-over-year.
To help marketers reach out to on-the-go shoppers, Google is introducing a number of new features to make travel planning and mobile shopping easier. This announcement was made on the official Adwords blog.
Enhancing the shopping experience
Mobile is a big part of how people plan travel. Visits to mobile travel sites made up 40% of total travel web traffic in the first quarter of this year. To help partners connect with potential customers who are planning and booking trips, Google has announced the following updates:
Hotel Smart Filters: Users will now have the option to filter hotel search results based on their needs. For example, travellers can filter results based on rating or price. This feature is available in the US and will roll out globally later this year.
Hotel Deals: When searching for a hotel, users may now see a "Deal" label when a hotel’s price is lower than usual compared to historical pricing. The algorithm automatically identifies a deal when there is a significant reduction in price. In early testings with advertisers, Google has seen that hotels marked as deals receive about twice as many bookings as other hotels.
Hotel Tips: The algorithm will show tips to users when they could save money or find better availability by moving their dates slightly using real time analysis. For example, “Save $105 if you stay Wed, Jul 13 - Fri, Jul 15”.
Flights price tracking: To help price-conscious travellers, Google is making it easier to track flight prices in Google Flights. According to Google, "users can now opt in to track fare changes for a date and route combination or track specific flights. When there is a significant change in price(increase or decrease), people will be notified by email and Google Now cards."
Enhancing the shopping experience
To enhance the shopping experience of a user who is unsure of what to buy, Google has introduced Showcase Shopping ads. To explain how these ads will work, Google shared an example of ASOS, a global apparel retailer. For example, if a user searches for “summer dresses” (a target keyword for ASOS), the retailer can showcase its wide range of dresses in a visually appealing format.
To start with, partners who are using Shopping Campaigns in the US, UK, and Australia will be eligible to use these ads before it’s rolled out to the rest of the world. Google is also experimenting with a premium version that will allow partners to customise the look and feel of how their products appear in Showcase Shopping ads.
YouTube Shopping Ads
Empowering marketers with more control over branding, Google has introduced 2 new features in YouTube ads:
Companion banner: An interactive banner will appear next to the video that lets viewers scroll through products while the video is playing next to it.
Product picker: Advertisers can choose which of their products are featured as cards in a TrueView for shopping campaign.
Enabling Shopping Across Borders
Google will let shoppers to shop across borders. The algorithm will convert the price into the local currency of the shoppers. The feature has been tested in Australia, Switzerland, Canada, and the UK. This feature will be available worldwide in the coming weeks.
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With the above mentioned advertising features, Google is not only helping partners, but in turn, also helping people by making it easier for them to shop and and plan their trips.