In July, TripAdvisor (TRIP) introduced its airlines platform. Similar to its current hotels product, TRIP’s airlines platform will allow users not only to be able to book flights, but also to provide reviews, drawing on its highly successful feature of user experiences.
TRIP will also provide a breakdown of airline costs, making hidden charges visible to users. By this, it hopes to become a go-to information source for travelers.
Things to do
In September 2016, TripAdvisor added a “Things to do” facility to its site. This allows users to find and book local activities. TRIP will also be adding video previews for these attractions to help close the sale.
Better mobile app
Even though mobile monetization rates are low (30% rate for desktop users), mobile revenues have been rising quickly. Clicks and transactions revenue rose 50% in 2Q16. Mobile repeat business is 50% higher than that of other devices.
App users are also more likely to make use of the instant booking platform. In fact, current app users book at four to five times the rate of desktop users. This is because app users tend to save credit card details more often than web users, making transactions simpler and faster and driving them to the app again and again.
The shift to online booking, and moreso to mobile booking, is here to stay, and TripAdvisor’s move to improve its app seems to be a step in the right direction.
TripAdvisor indirectly competes with Priceline (PCLN) and Expedia (EXPE). It recently formed a partnership with PCLN and major hotel chains Marriott (MAR) and Wyndham (WYN). TRIP makes up 1.6% of the First Trust NASDAQ-100 Ex-Tech Sect ETF (QQXT).