By Blake Ng — 27 Jul 2021
[Update: September 23rd 2021] Google has recently announced Google Things to do, the replacement to Reserve with Google for tour & activity operators. Currently, Google Things to Do is mostly available to attraction and ticketing-based businesses, for example – zoos, aquariums and museums. However they have started to expand into tours and activities as well.
Google is currently working on Google Things to do for tours & activities, this will be released soon. However, you can already start sending your tours & activities to Google through Rezdy, so your business will be ready to go as Google expands Things to do for tours & activities. If you’re not a Rezdy booking software user, you can start your 21-day free trial here or contact us here to see how we can still partner with you to connect to Google through our Channel Manager.
How does Google Things to do work? These are probably some of the first questions that’ll pop into mind when thinking about the new Google experience for the travel industry.
Google Things to do differs from Reserve with Google in that customers will no longer be able to purchase tickets/ make bookings directly on Google. Instead, customers will see a ‘visit site’ button on the listing that’ll direct customers to the operator’s booking page. Similar to Google’s booking experience for hotels.
The good news is, Google Things to do is a lot easier to set up than Reserve with Google was.
Aside from the easy setup, there are also:
The official site badge helps you stand out from your competitors. Especially when your listings are placed side by side. This may increase your direct bookings as consumer preferences have shifted towards direct bookings over reseller bookings. A recent study by GlobalData also found that 39% of consumers prefer to book directly, rather than through resellers. In fact, this number has been growing every year.
Although not specifically mentioned by Google, similar to a Google My Business listing, setting up a Google Things to do listing will likely have positive SEO implications on your website. You’ll be getting a referral link from Google which is always a positive sign for SEO; as well as more direct traffic, which is a signal to Google that your website is useful.
What does Google Things to do charge? How much does Things to do cost? Given Reserve with Google charged a commission, there is no surprise that these are some of the most asked questions.
The good news is – Things to do is currently free to use.
Google has just released a new ad format for Things to Do to further drive traffic, however, you can still access Things to do without using this paid option.
Google has just introduced a new ad format for Things to do. The ads appear above the search results. It’ll show various details including photos, prices, your company’s name, and a booking link for the activity.
It’s worth noting that this new ad format is very similar to Google Shopping Ads – which now win 85.3% of all clicks across US online retail according to Adthena Search Advertising Report. Meaning this new ad format may capture the majority of clicks related to tours & activities searches in the future.
Furthermore, according to Adthena, Google Shopping ads outperformed text ads in terms of click/spend ratio, on both desktop and mobile. Considering how similar Google Shopping Ads are to the new ad format for Google Things to Do, this may be a spend channel worth considering. Especially if you already have a budget for Google search ads.
Google Things to do has already been released. If you are a Rezdy customer, you can get connected right now.
You can also get connected with Google Things to do through Rezdy’s Channel Manager even if you don’t use Rezdy as your booking software. Contact us here to learn more.
As mentioned, Things to do is mostly available to attractions and ticketing businesses and will be available to tour & activities operators soon. However, you can already start sending your tours & activities to Google through Rezdy; so your business will be ready to go as Google expands Things to do for tours & activities. If you’re not a Rezdy user, you can start your 21-day free trial here.
Enjoy 21 days to take a look around and see if we are a good fit for your business.