PWC recently stated that suppliers are gaining ground over aggregators in the online travel marketplace. I had discussed this in context to another recent survey that said the same thing, however, what I liked about this article from Travelmole.com was the following quote:
“Already there are companies offering a wider range of services unrelated to travel – theatre tickets, restaurant bookings and theme park entry for example. This can result in increased customer loyalty and higher revenues per booking for the online operator.”
This quote represents a significant shift in how aggregators are viewing long tail destination activities and products. It indicates that larger travel resellers are looking to long tail suppliers as a means of adding value to the travel experience and as such are looking for unique and interesting complimentary products to sell. As Steve Barnhardt from Orbitz mentioned in the recent PhoCusWright Conference in Orlando, however, few long tail suppliers are using systems that allow their inventory to be easily shared with these larger aggregators. This represents a tremendous opportunity for long tail suppliers to distribute their products through established travel resale channels both online and through agencies.