Commentary

Marriott, Wyndham Gain Direct Traffic, Bookings From Search

Hotels seem to be doing a better job of driving consumers directly to their websites from search engines. Of the top 10 brands, six show an increase for actual confirmed direct bookings in May 2017, compared with the year-ago month, according to a study released Tuesday.

In fact, Marriott International brands show the highest volume of direct site bookings for May 2017 at 26.21%, up from 25.13 in May 2016. Wyndham shows the highest year-on-year increase, up 6.76%, respectively.

The Hitwise report—"Hotel Bookings Inspire: Direct Hotel vs. OTAs, Who is Converting"—analyzes website traffic and bookings for online travel agencies.

Hilton Hotels, Choice Hotels, Starwood and Hyatt Hotels and Resorts have increased direct bookings, whereas the share of bookings at St. Regis Hotels, Best Western, Sheraton, and InterContinental Hotel Group have declined.

Overall, Hilton does the best job at ranking in search results and among their own site visitors, Marriott came in second, Best Western, third.

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Courtyard ranked No. 6 in market share as the percentage of hotel conversions, but tied for No. 3 when it came to ranking among their own site visitors.

Holiday Inn came in No. 4 for ranking as a percentage of all hotel conversions, and No. 4 for ranking among their own site visitors.

In the past year, the only online travel agents (OTAs) that have increased bookings include Booking at 19%, Expedia at 28%, and Priceline at 16%. Hotels, Cheap Tickets, Travelocity, Orbitz and Hotwire lost conversions.

Booking gained the most market share, 3.35%, as of May 2017, compared with the year-ago month. Hotwire lost the most, 1.77.

Choice Hotels and Wyndham Hotels have been converting more consumers on their own websites, but they also still rely on OTA sites for business. The percentage of online traffic that leads travelers from OTAs to hotel sites varies greatly.

In May 2017. Choice Hotels took .43% of clicks, relying on OTAs for 9.27% of bookings, while Wyndham Hotels took .22% of clicks, relying on 6.56%.

Although a small hotel chain, Country Inn & Suites took .050% of clicks and relied on OTAs for 10.21% of click-through bookings.

Hitwise also ran a list of the top 15 hotel brands consumers have stayed at within the past 12 months, based on a panel of survey data. Here are the top seven. Hilton took the No. 1 spot with 10.6% market share, followed by Marriott with 10.5%; Best Western, 9.9%; Holiday Inn, 9.3%; Hampton Inn, 9%; Courtyard by Marriott, 8%; and Comfort Inn, 7%.

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