The travel and tourism industry is currently in a strange state of flux. As the lockdown restrictions begin to slowly ease, more people are beginning to plan trips, both domestically and overseas. As a result, activities and attraction providers are being forced to adapt, trying to work out how they can function amongst the new rules and regulations.

Because of this, digital is more important than ever, and there is a need for providers to have a strong online presence. However, as reported by Skift, Google may be on the verge of rolling out new features that might significantly shake up how consumers book tours and other activities online.

Currently visible to only a small number of users, the new feature titled ‘Things to Do’ displays a row of attractions above both organic and paid search results. Featuring minimal descriptions, a star rating and an image, these results link through directly to the booking pages of tour providers. These results pop up when the user searches for a relevant search term, such as ‘Things to do in Paris’ or ‘Things to do in Berlin’.

It seems as though Google may be partnering with select vendors, including GetYourGuide, Viator and Tigets. This puts them at a big advantage when people use Google to book their experience, allowing them to dominate search results pages above the fold.

Of course, the effect this will have on travel and tourism companies is dependent on how the feature actually works. Will it function similarly to Paid Search, allowing users to bid on particular terms? Or will Google partner directly with providers, deciding on results through some other algorithm? There’s no telling when Google may choose to release this new feature to the wider public, so it’s something to be aware of and prepared for.

What Actions Should You Take?

For businesses operating in the tourism and travel sector, it’s essential to take the right steps to ensure your business’s online presence is as strong as it can be. For support and advice, get in touch with Noble Performs; we can help you meet your KPIs across all key digital channels, including SEO, Pay-Per-Click, Social Media and Email Marketing.