Travel bounces back on Google, while retail takes a hit

US consumers were pinned down for pre-pandemic pleasures in Q4 2021, with the delta wave receding and omicron entering the frame – and it showed in their search behavior. Organic Google search visits to travel sites increased by 41% year over year that quarter. Meanwhile, retail and consumer goods have taken a hit: visits to these sites decreased by 14% as the prospects for in-store shopping improved.

Beyond the chart: For travel, 2021 has been a year of rebounds. The increase in organic search traffic came after a 19% decrease in Q4 2020 and coincided with the rebound in digital ad spend. The American travel industry has invested 18.7% more in digital ads last year, but it was still there $2.55 billion less than in 2019, according to our estimates.

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