It’s going to get done eventually, but TripAdvisor is admittedly facing some resistance to achieving its self-described “key product focus in 2014″ — enabling travelers to book hotels within TripAdvisor’s mobile apps.
TripAdvisor CEO Stephen Kaufer has been talking about such an “assisted booking” option since May 2013, and when I asked him about it during an interview in October 2013, it was clear from his reaction that TripAdvisor was working on it, although Kaufer said he had nothing to announce at that moment.
During the company’s fourth quarter earnings call on February 11, 2014, Kaufer said TripAdvisor would launch what might be called a Book TripAdvisor mobile option sometime in 2014, and in answer to a question, he acknowledged that some online travel agencies — probably the larger, important ones — “might prefer for us not to change the model because they’re perfectly happy getting the clicks themselves and preferring to drive more app downloads or other activities that they wouldn’t necessarily get as much of a chance to do if we’re taking a transaction.”
Why is a Book TripAvisor option so important on mobile devices? Because it would vastly increase conversion of lookers to bookers if they don’t have to navigate away from the app to a diverse collection of third-party websites of varying quality to complete the booking.
Lots of would-be mobile bookers get lost in that hand-off so that is why enabling the bookings within the TripAdvisor apps is of paramount importance.
READ THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE: TripAdvisor Pushes for In-App Hotel Bookings But Faces Resistance – Skift.