Cornell Website Tool Tracks Hotel Marketing Behavior

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Strategic hotel internet marketing can effectively drive additional revenue

Bill Carroll, Ph.D.

With search engine marketing, we finally have an advertising medium that allows us to evaluate the effect of our marketing expenditures

Search engine marketing and optimization are two essential strategies for hotel companies seeking to gain more business from their websites. A new tool from the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) allows hotel marketers who record customers' web clicks to analyze the effectiveness of their search engine marketing, in terms of room sales and revenues. The tool and the search engine analyses are described in a new CHR publication "Measuring the Performance of Search Engine Marketing: Two Tools for the Hotel Industry," by Anil Aggarwal and Bill Carroll. The hotel internet marketing tool is available at no charge from the CHR at http://www.hotelschool.cornell.edu/research/chr/pubs/tools/ . Aggarwal is CEO of Milestone Internet Marketing, and Carroll is a senior lecturer at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration.

"With search engine marketing, we finally have an advertising medium that allows us to evaluate the effect of our marketing expenditures," said Carroll. "When customers click into a hotel website, they leave a record of their purchase activity or information requests. That means that companies which have purchased advertising on the web search engines can find out whether that search engine marketing is attracting business."

Aggarwal and Carroll developed spreadsheet tools that allow hotel marketers to use the information that is freely available from Google Analytics to make a rough calculation of the revenue that results from sales through search engines, as well as determine the booking levels that stem from the search process. By inputting the cost of search engine marketing, the hotel can use the spreadsheet to calculate a return on investment from the hotel marketing expenses. The associated report provides guidance for evaluating search marketing and explains how to use the tools.

Thanks to the support of the CHR partners listed below, all publications posted on the center's website are available free of charge, at http://www.chr.cornell.edu .

About The Center for Hospitality Research
A unit of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, The Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) sponsors research designed to improve practices in the hospitality industry. Under the lead of the center's 81 corporate affiliates, experienced scholars work closely with business executives to discover new insights into strategic, managerial and operating practices. The center also publishes the award-winning hospitality journal, the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly. To learn more about the center and its projects, visit http://www.chr.cornell.edu .

Center Senior Partners: Hilton Worldwide, McDonald's USA, Philips Hospitality, SAS, STR, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, and TIG Global

Center Partners: Davis & Gilbert LLP, Deloitte & Touche USA LLP, Denihan Hospitality Group, eCornell & Executive Education, Expedia, Inc., Forbes Travel Guide, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Fox Rothschild LLP, French Quarter Holdings, Inc., FX Real Estate and Entertainment, Inc., HVS, Hyatt, InterContinental Hotels Group, Jumeirah Group, LRP Publications, Maritz, Marriott International, Inc., Marsh's Hospitality Practice, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Proskauer, Sabre Hospitality Solutions, Schneider Electric, Southern Wine and Spirits of America, Inc., Thayer Lodging Group, Thompson Hotels, Travelport, and WATG

Center Friends: 4Hoteliers.com • American Tescor, LLC • Argyle Executive Forum • Berkshire Healthcare • Center for Advanced Retail Technology • Cody Kramer Imports • Cruise Industry News • DK Shifflet & Associates • ehotelier.com • EyeforTravel • Gerencia de Hoteles & Restaurantes • Global Hospitality Resources • Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) • hospitalityInside.com • hospitalitynet.org • Hospitality Technology Magazine • Hotel Asia Pacific • Hotel China • HotelExecutive.com • Hotel Interactive • Hotel Resource • HotelWorld Network • International CHRIE • International Hotel Conference • International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) • iPerceptions • JDA Software Group, Inc. • Lodging Hospitality • Lodging Magazine • LRA Worldwide, Inc. • Milestone Internet Marketing • MindFolio • Mindshare Technologies • PhoCusWright • PKF Hospitality Research • The Resort Trades • RealShare Hotel Investment & Finance Summit • Resort and Recreation Magazine • RestaurantEdge.com • Shibata Publishing Co. • Synovate • The Lodging Conference • The Wall Street Journal • TravelCLICK • UniFocus • USA Today • WageWatch, Inc. • WIWIH.COM

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