Search Engine Marketing

Google’s Page Experience Update: May 4, 2021

It’s almost here! This will be a major algorithm update, and as the name implies, it focuses on your website users’ experience. Google will be prioritizing a set of signals (Core Web Vitals) in their rankings that measure loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability.

Additionally, it will be vital that your website:

  • Is mobile friendly with responsive technology
  • Promotes safe browsing with a Https security certificate, as well as links and media from trusted sources
  • Does not have intrusive pop-ups

We’ll be conducting an SEO audit for marketing clients on SEO plans to review any opportunities to improve your current designs to make sure everyone is ready for this change!

Free Booking Links in Google Hotel Ads

This new layout is very much aligned with the traditional, and very much successful, search results page (SERP). In the SERP, the top of the page is reserved for paid ads, and organic results are below. In Hotel Ads, the “organic” listings are now called Free Booking Links.


  • The “paid” section has a lot of information such as room photos, cancellation policies, logo, occupancy, call-outs and all of the rates & room types. It also has the “official site” label. What we see in the “organic” section is simpler and has less information.
  • We are currently not seeing the free booking links show up on Google Maps.
  • In theory, Google Analytics will allow us to differentiate between Paid & Free ads. However, more work needs to be done by ThinkReservations and other service providers to facilitate this.
  • So far, hotel industry data suggests that roughly 3% of the total traffic has come from these new “free hotels links” in the last weeks.