Google Travel Search Changes

  • February 4, 2016
  • SEO
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Recently, Barry Schwartz wrote an article on Search Engine Land entitled “Google Revamps Travel Search Queries, Almost Making Web Results Irrelevant” about a change in the UI that makes it harder to see web based search results.  Barry points out that the changes make it “…really hard…” to get back to the organic web results after you click the “more destinations” button.  Being the kind of guy who hates to take someone else’s word for things, I decided to test the premise.

This is the image Barry used in his post.  The search query was “where to visit in Russia.”

where-to-go-in-russia-google-travel-search[1]

So I did the same query on my iPhone 6. I used thee different search methods: via Apple’s built in Safari browser, via a Chrome browser and via a Google Search app.  The differences between the three are immediately apparent:

Google Search App Safari Google Chrome
IMG_2608 IMG_2604 IMG_2606

On Safari (in the middle), the organic results do indeed disappear below the fold.  But on Google’s Search App and on Google Chrome, the organic results are still visible to users.

Now searching for where to go in Russia is a pretty big, so I wanted to try a search on a smaller destination: Norwalk, CT where my office is located. This time, the “More Destinations” button was missing entirely and the organic results are completely visible.

Google Search App Safari Google Chrome
IMG_2609 IMG_2605 IMG_2607

I tried the same type of search for Chicago and New York City and got the same results.

So if you’re in the travel business and you’re worried about being on mobile SERPs, this change isn’t the end of the world.  Just something else we have to deal with.

As the Founder of Expert SEO Consulting, Eric Richmond brings with him more than 20 years of experience in advertising and technology consulting. Prior to forming Expert SEO Consulting, Eric served as Head of Audience Development for Complex Media, VP of Search and Social Media for TechMediaNetwork. Before that, Eric was VP of Technology & SEO at 360i, where he was responsible for overseeing the development of proprietary technology solutions for 360i in addition to managing the Agency’s SEO practice. Eric came to 360i from RichFX, where he served as Director of Strategic Accounts serviced clients list Wal-Mart, The Home Depot and Safeway. Prior to RichFX, Eric was VP/Global Account Director at Viewpoint, as well as CTO for Grey Interactive Worldwide and VP/Technology for APLDigital.

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