Search engines are increasingly filling a key role in meeting consumer information needs. According to a November 2014 study by Eldman.com, search engines have surpassed the traditional media (TV, Newspapers, etc) as the most trusted source worldwide by consumers with 64% of Internet users trusting search engines the most for gathering information. In addition, nearly half of the study said that they trust social media for news and information – a gain from 45% the previous year.
Furthermore, Owned Media, which includes any hub that is controlled by a business, such as a hotel’s website or blog, is trusted by 47 percent of the global informed public. And in comparison to journalists and media, educated consumers consider information provided by hotels and businesses to be more reliable and trustworthy.
What This Trend Means for Hotel Marketing
Today’s travelers are better educated as they are offered more channels and tools for gathering information and making sound travel purchase decisions. They are also better equipped to expand and filter the type of content they get and the channels they receive it from. They are also more willing to engage with content from brands and hotels they know. However, the question here isn’t whether consumers trust the information your hotel is sharing online, it’s whether they can even find the information. Without proper search engine optimization for your hotel, it will be hard to capture search visibility and market share from competitors who are optimizing and taking advantage of digital marketing.
With online search engines surpassing traditional media’s trust barometer, it is important for brands and hotels to put serious consideration and allocate marketing budget for SEO and digital marketing. For more information on how Milestone can help you capture online market share through hotel website design, search engine optimization, social media marketing, and other digital initiatives, contact us.
- Teresa Villaruz, Sr. Marketing Manager
- Stephen Fitzgerald, Sr. VP of Sales
- Edelman Research Insight, http://www.edelman.com/post/intellectual-property-trust-age-digital-media/