Metasearch for advanced users and 4 more stories
Growing the travel pie
I believe voice and chat technology will grow the travel pie. Making spontaneous traveling something accessible to everyone, and not just that, but it will distribute travel to new destinations easing the load on the main travel locations and bringing back the discovery element of travel. This website by Aeroports de Paris is but a small taste of how this will work, specify certain criteria such as frame of mind, weather, budget and you'll get a few recommendations. Once hotel's are added, this will make travel dramatically easier, and discovery much more fun. It's only in French for now, but Google Translate can help with that.
Everybody wants to be a tech company
I'm not sure what the difference between an internet company and a tech company is in 2017, but there is a clear difference between a travel company and a tech company. Expedia's announcement of shifting to becoming a tech company is interesting as it has long been the largest online travel company. But shifting to a tech company might be a wise way to move away from what will probably be an endless battle between direct and indirect revenue. And if Trivago and TripAdvisor are any example, then Expedia is the most successful travel tech accelerator around.
Should mobile really be replacing desktop?
Ever since the launch of the iPhone (and accelerated with the iPad) the doom of the desktop has been announced. Yet conversion rates on mobile revenue are nowhere near desktop, even though they are increasing a little every year. But the question I'm wondering about is, should mobile really be replacing desktop? Maybe mobile is just better at casual and instant search whereas desktop is better at final conversions. Hotels regularly dismiss mobile websites because "conversion rates are low" but maybe it just shouldn't be seen that way. It surely is comfortable for the mind to think in X will replace Y but reality is that we're adding more technology and they might each have their own place in our lives.
What if Airbnb's success is just about rates?
As hoteliers we see the threat of Airbnb as "the new hotel experience for the younger generation" (I will not use the word millennial) and maybe that's true. But maybe not. Airbnb's marketing has pushed that angle a lot and we might have bought into it a little too much. A recent twitter debate made me realize how surprised that exact generation was to see Airbnb rates being higher than hotel rates. And that might just show that the main reason, really, was rates. It's worth reading all the comments to see just how widespread that sentiment is.
In depth look at metasearch by Koddi
There are many opinions on metasearch. Some hoteliers I spoke to say it is essentially the same as an OTA, numbers from agencies show much better results. But like anything, there's a right way and a wrong way. Metasearch isn't a turn it on and forget it channel, it requires work. This in depth look by Koddi is for those who really want to make metasearch work for them. I'd not the beginner's guide. But read it.