Free Digital Marketing Tools for Independent Hoteliers

From OTA fees to online ads, digital marketing can eat up a chunk of the budget for independent hoteliers. But hey, good news—there’s a bunch of nifty free digital marketing tools out there for hotel marketers! These tools aren’t just budget-friendly (obviously), they also spice up your marketing game without costing a dime—just your time. And guess what? Many of these tools can even save you time in the long run! 

Let’s dive in and check out these free tools that make social media management a breeze, expand your reach, help you create and organize content, and strengthen communication with customers. And the best part? They’re all right at your fingertips, for free!


When it comes to free digital marketing tools for your hotel, Google is your best friend. In addition to paid Google ads, Google offers a variety of free tools for hotels. 

  • Google Business Profile: If you’re not set up with this already, run—don’t walk—to get it done today. This is the first piece of the Google puzzle you mustn’t ignore. Formerly known as Google My Business, your Google Business Profile allows you to create an online profile, including photos, and respond to customers’ Google reviews. It’s also essential for Google’s free booking links (keep reading).
  • Google Free Booking Links: Once you have a Google Business Profile, your hotel can qualify for free booking links within the Google Hotel Search. Free booking links drive potential guests straight to your online booking engine to book direct. When integrated with your hotel’s online booking system (like WebRezPro), Google automatically displays your property’s live rates and inventory to maximize bookings while saving you time.
  • Google Keyword Planner: Adhering to Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tactics is essential for any website and campaign. Instead of hiring an SEO expert, you can initiate the groundwork using Google’s Keyword Planner. Designed to assist you in identifying keywords for your digital campaigns, this free tool provides insights into trending search terms and highlights competitive ones. It offers ideas about potential opportunities that may exist.
  • Google Analytics 4: Once known simply as Google Analytics, Google Analytics 4 (GA4) offers free digital insights to help you comprehend the guest’s digital journey to and through your website. Event-based information, as opposed to session-based, can provide insights into the path each guest segment takes toward booking. This invaluable information can assist you in shaping promotions and determining where to invest.
  • Google Travel Insights: Gain insights into travel trends with Google Travel Insights. Using this free tool, you can explore your region’s tourism demands and observe how they have changed year over year. For instance, Google Travel Insights can inform you whether searches for your city originate from domestic or international users. This kind of information can aid you in making informed decisions about how to allocate your marketing dollars.
  • Google Page Speed Insights: Your website’s Google search ranking is determined by their algorithm, currently referred to as Core Web Vitals. Google aims to direct traffic to legitimate, user-friendly websites that are fast, operate smoothly, and are spam-free. Assess your website’s performance by using Google Page Speed Insights. This free tool provides a comprehensive analysis of your website’s performance, accessibility, best practices, and SEO. It offers valuable insights into your website’s strengths and weaknesses, eliminating the need for guesswork or costly third-party audits.
  • Google Alerts: Stay on top of what people are saying about your hotel and set up Google Alerts to receive notifications directly delivered to your inbox. Setting up alerts to track content about your partners, related tourism opportunities, and even competitors can keep you abreast of what’s happening in your industry.


When it comes to updating website images, adding photos to OTA profiles, and creating social media posts, these free tools will elevate your content while saving you time and money.

  • Canva: Canva has your hotel covered with a host of image templates, whether you’re crafting a flier, a social media cover photo, or marketing emails. While the paid version boasts AI-generated images and text, the free version is equally invaluable. It allows you to upload your brand’s standard colors and fonts, ensuring consistency across all your designs. You can even whip up gifs, animated images, and short videos on this platform, making it a dream come true for all your projects—even offline presentations!
    Canva doesn’t just stop at design; it’s also a treasure trove for stock imagery. If you need more sources, check out platforms like Unsplash, Pixabay, and 123RF. Canva and its companions have your visual content needs covered!
  • Pixlr: While you can do quite a bit of image editing in Canva, Pixlr is your free version of Photoshop to help you edit resolution, crop, remove backgrounds, apply healing, blurs and other familiar photo editing applications. While the free version is fairly robust, they recently instituted a three-image download limit per day.
  • Videos: If you’re after free video editing software, depending on what you need it for, Canva may be the answer you need. Or, if it’s for social media, each platform provides its own in-app solution with plenty of bells and whistles. Otherwise, you could check out CapCut, ClipChamp, and Kapwing, to name a few.

Pro tip: When it comes to creating or redesigning your website, it’s important to invest in a designer with SEO knowledge that can ensure website functionality, brand consistency, booking engine integration, and compliance with accessibility standards. There are free website design platforms out there (like Wixm, WordPress, and with free ready-made templates, but unless you know what you’re doing, it pays to bring a designer onboard. Our experienced website design team uses WordPress to reduce overall design costs while bringing the expertise to customize the site as needed and ensure optimal functionality. 

Content Generation

Artificial Intelligence is a huge time saver when it comes to content generation, which is a major win since so much of digital marketing is all about content. But you still need a human at the helm of your AI-generated content to steer it in the right direction, ensure accuracy, and define strategy (though AI can help you with that, too!).

  • ChatGPT: If you’re not leveraging ChatGPT for free content generation, you are missing out! From assisting with web content to writing long-form blog posts, ChatGPT is a surefire time saver for hotels. Beyond content production, ChatGPT can inform your digital strategy. Simply ask it for advice on marketing plans and campaigns. It can also build out blog and social media calendars! 
  • Grammarly: While ChatGPT can also edit your writing, Grammarly does so in real-time while you’re writing. It’s just another free tool that helps streamline your editing by installing an app.

Social Media Scheduling

While running social media ads is not free, managing your social media accounts is! Doing so is not only worth your effort but is essential to maintaining a presence as well. 

  • Later: Later is a scheduling platform that grants 10 free posts per platform each month. Notably, it incorporates the feature, which is essentially an index of links accessed from a single link in your social media bio and is particularly beneficial for Instagram (an alternative is Linktree).
  • In-app scheduling: Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, TikTok, Pinterest…these platforms all have their own native scheduling feature in addition to analytics. While you can’t manage cross-platform content in one dashboard, it is free. Some argue that native posting results in higher engagement than when using third-party tools, anyway.

Customer Communication

Tools that help your hotel keep in touch with customers are incredibly valuable. And these ones are free!…

  • Survey Monkey: Create and share surveys with guests for free and get valuable feedback through Survey Monkey. For example, you can send customers a post-stay survey to find out how you did, or create one as part of a campaign to learn more about what travelers to your region are looking for.
  • Email: Both Klaviyo and Mailchimp have free versions for up to a maximum number of emails, which may be enough for your independent hotel, especially when just beginning in your email marketing. Both platforms offer templates to make designing easy for marketing campaigns, newsletters, and even transactional automation.
  • Chat Messaging: Meet guests where they’re at through chat messaging! While specialized, paid guest messaging platforms consolidate and streamline communications, you can use private or direct messaging on your social media platforms for free—as long as you have the time or staff to monitor your channels. You can set up hours of operation along with automated messaging and even answers to basic FAQs in the case of Facebook. Whatsapp Business is a particularly novel free tool designed for small businesses that can help you sort, save, and automate responses.

Independent hotels needn’t break the bank for their digital marketing initiatives. There are plenty of free tools out there, it’s just a matter of finding the ones that work best for your business. The best place to start is Google since the platform offers so much help for hotels—free! And properties with WebRezPro already have a host of tools at their fingertips within their PMS, including guest profiles, email automation, and channel management. By strategically leveraging these resources, independent hotels can boost their online presence without straining their budget.