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Vertical integration of platforms and product prominence

Morgane Cure (), Matthias Hunold (), Reinhold Kesler (), Ulrich Laitenberger and Thomas Larrieu ()
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Morgane Cure: CREST, ENSAE Paris, Institut Polytechnique de Paris
Matthias Hunold: University of Siegen
Reinhold Kesler: University of Zurich
Thomas Larrieu: Institut Polytechnique de Paris

Quantitative Marketing and Economics (QME), 2022, vol. 20, issue 4, No 2, 353-395

Abstract: Abstract Meta-search platforms, which enable consumers to compare product prices between different sales channels, are sometimes integrated with certain channels. A case in point is the online hotel booking industry where the major online travel agencies are integrated with meta-search platforms. Studying web-scraped data from the meta-search platform Kayak, we find indications that, for a given hotel, the offers of affiliated online travel agents (like are more visible than those of other online travel agents with the same price. Moreover, hotels appear to be less prominent in Kayak’s search results when the rival online travel agent Expedia has the lowest price.

Keywords: Meta-search; Hotel booking; Online travel agents; Ranking; Algorithm bias (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D22 D43 L11 L42 L81 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1007/s11129-022-09255-4

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