Very quick rant here as have to dash for P&T night, but spurned by a piece on ianditravelmedia regarding Google softening Panda stuff, I went and googled “Cheap Istanbul hotel” (note the singular).
Here’s the result:
The top few are, as we have come to expect, blended in ads., as is the stuff at the bottom, you know, just before the organic listings.
But in between, look at the other listings. These used to go to Google Places, which I assume Google has along with everything else rolled into +. Over half of them go to travel agents.
I Googled “hotel” not “hotels”. With a plural, yes an OTA may be a reasonable result as I’m looking for a selection, but with the singular, absolutely not.
And really, when people have come to expect “places” to be in “places” listing travel agents in a location map for a query on hotels seems well off the bat.
Think some Istanbul travel agencies are taking the piss here. Try your home town – do you get a result for a single property?