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Leading agency websites lose share to competition

Hitwise, the leading online competitive intelligence service has released the latest Industry Report on the Online Travel sector. …

Hitwise, the leading online competitive intelligence service has released the latest Industry Report on the Online Travel sector.



Key highlights from this report include:


  • The market share of visits to Travel sites in the U.S. (compared with all Internet sites) has grown over 28% from January 2003 to February 2004. Since December 2003, market share of visits in the Travel category has increased over 38%.



  • Growth in market share of visits by sub-category, was led by Destinations and Accommodations with 128% growth from January 2003 to February 2004. The Transport and Agencies sub-categories achieved a 35% and 29% growth in market share during that same period, respectively.



  • While the market share of the Travel – Agencies sub-category is increasing, the major agency sites; Expedia, Travelocity and Orbitz, are losing market share to sites such as Trip Advisor, Cheap Tickets and Hotwire.



  • Over 30% of all visits to sites in the Travel category are referred from other Travel related sites. Over 45% of visits leaving a site within the Travel category are going to another Travel related site.



  • The Travel category is recording a relatively small percentage of traffic from Email Services, indicating that online travel vendors are not currently leveraging web-based electronic mail as the primary means of driving visits to their sites.



  • The Travel category received 30.7% of visits from Search Engines and Directories



  • When looking at the top 30 successful search terms for Travel sub-categories, brands are more prevalent for Destinations & Accommodations and Transport than for Agencies. Less than 50% of the top 30 successful terms for Agencies are brand-related whereas Destinations & Accommodations and Transport have 66% and 86% respectively.



  • The predominant demographic in the Travel category is: Female (58.3%), over 35 years of age (69.9%), with household earnings over $75,000 per year (41%).



  • Cruise Ships and Domestic Airlines do not follow the same trend as the rest of the Travel category for the period May through July 2003.




Top 10 travel sites for the week ending March 13, 2004.

Market Share of visits to Travel sites




maps.yahoo.com,

7.61%

www.expedia.com,

6.40%

www.travelocity.com,

5.09%

www.mapquest.com,

4.55%

www.orbitz.com,

4.13%

www.southwest.com,

2.55%

www.hotwire.com,

2.26%

www.cheaptickets.com,

1.82%

www.tripadvisor.com,

1.81%

travel.yahoo.com,

1.75%

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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