Expedia Group unveils new strategy to serve travellers, partners and industry
LAS VEGAS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–At its annual partner event, EXPLORE, Expedia Group launched a three-tiered strategy to redefine its place in travel, including a new technology platform called Expedia Group™ Open World; a reimagined marketplace that rewards partners for delivering great traveler experiences; and a focus on developing technology for travelers that provides the right information to increase booking confidence.
“It’s not the Expedia Group we were two years ago, let alone two decades ago,” Vice Chairman and CEO Peter Kern said, referring to the company’s founding at the late 1990s and the fact that EXPLORE was last hosted live two years ago. . “We’ve spent the past two years reinventing our potential and decided it was time for much-needed change. Rather than a market that has become commoditized around price, we envision a world where travelers are presented with the right option for their needs, with transparency around value and expectations. We’re excited to share the ways we bring this to life.
Expedia Group’s Open Global Technology Platform
The company announced Expedia Group Open World, its new technology platform specifically designed for partners of all sizes to operate and configure the products and services needed to succeed in the travel ecosystem. The platform will provide a complete e-commerce suite, with building blocks like payments, fraud, conversations, and service, that anyone can use to accelerate, improve, or even enter the travel business.
“Whether you’re a bank with a rewards program, an airline looking to expand its offering, a specialty travel agent focused on underserved travelers, or a TikTok influencer helping the world dream of its next destination, if you want to be in travel, the Open World platform can help anyone succeed. Our platform, combined with the new innovations we announced today, is driven by our desire to put travelers first because we fundamentally believe that when travelers win, we all win,” added Kern.
“By helping everyone leverage our technology and offering, Open World will enable our new and existing partners to thrive in the travel market with a suite of solutions tailored to their needs, all powered by our immense artificial intelligence. and our machine learning capabilities,” said Rathi Murthy, Chief Technology Officer, Expedia Group. “Choice is also considered in our new platform. Partners will be able to choose exactly what works for them.”
As the platform matures, it will become a place where developers, data scientists, marketers, entrepreneurs and others can create new ways to encourage and enable people to travel.
Redesigned Marketplace Rewards Partners for Traveler Experience
Expedia Group also announced a reinvented marketplace that puts the traveler experience at the heart of its business. Using a wide range of data signals, including traveler reviews, customer service interactions and more, each hotel property will receive a new guest experience score. This score will directly impact the search and sort factors that drive visibility in the Expedia Group Marketplace algorithm.
Partners will receive personalized insights and actionable recommendations to improve their customer experience scores in line with traveler expectations. By incentivizing partners to deliver better experiences by transferring more bookings to those performing well, the company hopes to create better connections between partners and travelers and greater long-term traveler loyalty for all.
“We are reimagining our marketplace all around the traveler experience. Travelers are looking for the right experience at all price points and at all star rating levels. Our new marketplace will reward partners who put the traveler experience first and deliver on the expectations they set,” said Ariane Gorin, president of Expedia for Business. “We want travelers to have great experiences and we make sure partners get credit for the experiences they deliver. . Our goal is to create a climate of trust with travelers.
Hotel Partners can view their Guest Experience Score now by logging in to Expedia Group Partner Central. The customer experience score will be visible to travelers in the coming months with plans to roll out to other business areas later in the year.
New features for travelers to boost transparency and trust
The company also introduced three new features designed to build trust in the travel shopping and booking experience.
- Travel diaries: To enable a better trip planning experience, Expedia Group is expanding Trip Boards to more product lines. Travel Boards serve as the foundation for everything travel-related, from hotels to activities, flights and more, allowing travelers to save and reserve items and simplifying collaboration with travel companions. Trip Boards is already a hit on Vrbo and will launch this summer on Expedia, with additional collaboration features later in the year.
- Smart shopping: Smart shopping makes it easier for travelers to compare and choose between deals by providing a wider range of options earlier and in one place. For hotels, this includes room attributes, categories, and upgrade opportunities. For flights, this includes different schedules, layovers, seat selection and baggage check-in. Smart shopping gives travelers more transparency about their purchases, while partners are exposed to additional revenue opportunities. Smart shopping is live today for hotels and will soon be available for flights.
- Price tracking: The price tracker shows past trends and future price predictions for flight searches. It allows travelers to see how their flight prices might change, reducing stress so they can confidently book at the right time. For partners, it encourages travelers to consider and purchase flights they might not have booked otherwise. Price tracking is available today on the Expedia app at the US point of sale for flights. It will be extended to hotels later this year.
Following last year’s announcement that Expedia Group would create a new unified loyalty program, the company announced that this new program is called “One Key” and combines four different loyalty programs that the company has under its aegis. When One Key launches next year, all members will, for the first time, be able to earn and burn points on any of the Expedia Group brands, such as Expedia, Vrbo, Hotels.com and more, and on any of their travel products, including air, hotel, vacation rental, car and cruise.
To learn more about the Expedia Group Open World platform and other news, please watch the general session of EXPLORE 2022 available: http://livestream.exploreexpediagroup.com/
About Expedia Group
Expedia Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE) companies provide travel for everyone, everywhere through our global platform. Driven by the fundamental belief that travel is a force for good, we help people experience the world in new ways and form lasting connections. We provide cutting-edge technology solutions to fuel partner growth and success, while facilitating memorable experiences for travelers. Our organization is made up of four pillars: Expedia Services, centered on the group’s platform and technical strategy; Expedia Marketplace, focused on product and technology offerings across the organization; Expedia Brands, home to all of our consumer brands; and Expedia for Business, which provides business-to-business solutions and relationships across the travel ecosystem. The Expedia Group family of brands includes: Expedia®, Hotels.com®, Expedia® Partner Solutions, Vrbo®, trivago®, Orbitz®, Travelocity®, Hotwire®, Wotif®, ebookers®, CheapTickets®, Expedia Group™ Media Solutions, CarRentals.com™ and Expedia Cruises™.
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