A leading online travel service provider, Expedia.com has been a majority-owned subsidiary of USA Interactive since February of 2002. Since its launch in 1996, Expedia.com has grown to meet the needs of travelers worldwide, currently headquartered in Bellevue, Washington, with localized versions throughout Europe and Canada. The site offers travel services provided by more than 450 airlines and over 43,000 lodging properties; major car rental companies; cruise lines; and destination service merchants including restaurants, attractions, and local transportation and tour providers.
Expedia.com operates under a diversified business model, utilizing both the agency and the merchant models. Under the agency model, Expedia.com acts as the agent in a transaction, passing the customer's reservation to the travel supplier (hotel) in return for a commission from the travel supplier. Under the merchant model, Expedia.com receives inventory (hotel rooms) from suppliers and acts as the merchant in the transaction, thereby commanding higher per-sale profit levels than the agency model. Furthermore, the merchant model provides customers with lower prices than the agency model.
To power its marketplace, ...
This solution explains marketing tools used by Expedia.com.