How big a threat are Internet hotel sites?

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It depends, but if you’re linked to the hotel brand’s site, you should be in the pink, according to the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International and Smith Travel Research’s first-ever hotel Internet marketing metrics survey. The results, presented at the second HSMAI Hotel Internet Marketing Strategy Conference, showed that 75 percent of Internet hotel room sales happened on the brand’s own site.

A total of 34 branded hotel chains, representing nearly 1.2 million rooms, participated in the survey, which reviewed 2002 data against 2003 results of all online reservations by brands, third party sites and GDS sites.

"Internet reservations and especially the impact of third party sites is on everybody’s mind today," said Mark Lomanno, president of Smith Travel Research, in a press release.

More preliminary findings:

1. Brand.com (hotel branded Web sites) drives Internet business with 75 percent of the volume

2. Brand.com reservations increased 32.5% in 2003 over 2002 to 14.8 million

3. InterActive Corp, with Expedia, Hotels.com and Hotwire, combined marketshare makes up 11% of the total reservation volume

4. Total third-party share of online reservations shifted from 23 percent to 25 percent from 2002 to 2003. This two-point shift represents 4.9 million reservations.

5. Amadeus had the largest gain among the GDS, but Sabre still rules with 50+ % of GDS volume

6. Brand.com sites produce the highest ADR, but were flat year over year

7. Third party sites’ ADRs increased slightly from 2002 to 2003

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