What Is the Best Deal According To Trivago? (Site That Pays The Highest Click Price/Commission)

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Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) issued a release last year that it would take Trivago to court over misleading claims of displaying the lowest prices to consumers.

Trivago

The case has now proceed to court in Sydney where both ACCC and Trivago are presenting their sides on the issue.

Here’s an excerpt from the Sydney Morning Herald (access their piece here):

The German-based website faces a multimillion dollar fine if the ACCC wins the case over accusations Trivago deceived customers when it claimed to offer the “best prices” for the “exact same rooms” from December 2016.

“The website has not ever, and does not today, in fact enable consumers who are searching on the web and using a Trivago website to quickly and easily identify the cheapest prices available for a particular hotel room,” Norman O’Bryan, SC, representing the ACCC, told the court on Monday.

Mr O’Bryan said that hotel deal advertisers paid Trivago a “cost per click” fee in return for high-ranking search result positions. The first search result generally received 80 per cent more traffic than the second result, he said.

Here’s an excerpt from the Sydney Morning Herald (access their piece here):

The “best deal” for a room promoted on Trivago’s website is not always the cheapest, the online hotel giant has told the Federal Court.

Trivago revealed how it ranks offers as it began its defence against an Australian Competition and Consumer Commission lawsuit alleging it misled customers by prioritising higher paying advertisers over cheaper deals.

Trivago’s lawyers told the Federal Court on Tuesday that its algorithm prioritised the best deal for customers and considered factors beyond price such as the ease of using a booking website and a lack of cancellation fees.

Conclusion

It was about the time that these dishonest practices by Trivago are exposed that are likely used by all other similar comparison engines.

You cannot find the lowest prices on these comparison sites anyway because they have listings only from sources that either pay them a commission or set price per click. Obviously those that sell at a lower prices cannot pay the same high commission as the majority owner of Trivago (Expedia that includes number of brands such as Orbitz, CheapTickets and Travelocity) who has price parity agreements in place with most major hotel chains.

It is interesting to see what will be the outcome of this case that is goring through the court process in Australia at the moment.

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