Your hotel is your brand and in a study done by the Havas group on meaningful brands, consumers are desperately seeking brands that will make a meaningful difference – with 73% of consumers saying brands must act now for the good of society and the environment.
This means your customers are interested in how you are cooperating with corporate social responsibility by being environmentally responsible and adopting eco-friendly business practices. Google has made it easier to mark environmentally responsible or eco-certified hotels. In this article, we look at how to get eco-certified on Google Hotel Ads.
What is an Eco-certified hotel on Google?
Eco-certified hotels on Google are identifiers of the sustainability efforts put in place by hotels to adopt green practices and minimise their carbon footprint. These hotels are identified as “Eco-certified” in global search results with an eco-certified tag and leaf icon. When a user clicks on the “Learn More” section and navigates to “About”, there is a sustainability section that details the sustainable practices adopted by the hotel as well as certification received by a globally recognised agency.
How Do I Become Eco-Certified on Google Hotel Ads?
Eco-certifications are granted to hotels that meet sustainability criteria designated by a third-party certification agency. When a hotel is labelled “eco-certified” on a Google search, it means they have reported earning a certification from an agency that Google has identified as following a number of criteria:
- The agency uses globally recognised and reputable evaluation criteria.
- The evaluation must focus on environmental impact from these four categories: energy efficiency, water consumption, waste reduction, and sustainable sourcing.
- The agency must conduct an on-site audit to verify the hotel's sustainability practices, or use an independent third party to do so.
The first thing is to obtain an eco-sustainable certification from one of the entities accepted by Google. Once you receive your certification from a recognised agency, you must go to your Google Business Profile and click Information > Hotel Attributes where you will find the Sustainability and Eco-certifications section. Here you can register your sustainable practices and certifications. For more on activating eco-certification click here.
What Are Examples Of Sustainable Hotel Practices?
To receive the certificate you need to demonstrate ways that you are operating sustainably in your hotel, here are some examples of sustainable hotel practices:
- Water conservation: Water-efficient faucets, toilets, and showers. Towel and linen reuse programs are also effective in water conservation.
- Energy efficiency: Green building design, energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, energy conservation program, energy-efficient lighting etc.
- Waste reduction: Recycling program, food waste reduction program, donates and composts excess food, no single-use plastic water bottles/straws, safe disposal of electronic and hazardous material.
- Sustainable sourcing: Responsible purchasing policy, organic and locally sourced food and beverages, vegan and vegetarian meals, eco-friendly toiletries etc.
Benefits of Being Eco-Certified on Google Hotel Ads
In June 2021, Bloomberg released a report in which it highlighted that 83% of participants state that sustainable travel is important to them. Half of the respondents said that they find it difficult to find eco-certified accommodation.
One of the most important benefits of adding your hotel booking engine to the metasearch channel is that you attract a major market share of travellers that want eco-travel as an option - this market is growing exponentially.
According to Google search trends, the term “green hotel” has quadrupled in search volume since March 2020. This means that there’s no better time to consider practising sustainable hotel processes as travellers are prioritising this when choosing accommodation. Being eco-certified is not only beneficial because of certification of high operational standards, but it is also beneficial when applying for grants, permits or licenses.
The Benefits of Putting Your Booking Engine on Google Hotel Ads
Google Hotel Ads is a way that Google has leveraged its global community in finding suitable accommodation for their travel. This means that adding your booking engine to the metasearch engine allows you to reach a wider audience in hotel search results. When travellers book rooms at your property on Google this has a number of benefits:
- Attract travellers searching for location-specific accommodation.
- Increase direct bookings by up to 43%.
- Enjoy more control over the customer journey without 3rd party involvement.
- Access to more customer information for better upsell opportunities.
Google Hotel Ads, more than serving as a gateway to Google’s global community, is also an integration partner of RoomRaccoon which means that you can simply activate this connection on your RoomRaccoon PMS in a few simple steps.
The eco-certification has allowed conscious travellers to identify eco-hotels without much effort. Travellers and businesses are now more than ever trying to partner with environmentally friendly hotels and being certified on Google Hotel Ads as an eco-hotel position you well enough to tap into this emerging market of eco travellers.