Travel metasearch sites—search engines specifically dedicated to displaying travel product pricing and information—are influencing the marketplace for digital travel shopping and booking, and the most significant implications for marketers have to do with evolving metasearch business models, according to a new eMarketer report, “Hotel Metasearch: Marketing Strategies for an Emerging Ad Platform.” Large online companies including Priceline.com, Expedia, TripAdvisor and Google have invested significantly in travel metasearch as publishers to create strategic alignments and increase advertising revenues, as pay-per-click advertising is a key revenue driver for most metasearch sites. From an advertiser’s point of view, travel suppliers see metasearch as a more cost-effective and efficient way to drive potential bookers directly to their own websites, and they’re developing strategies to leverage this evolving channel. Metasearch customers in general tend to be deal-seekers, hence their gravitation toward price comparisons rather than shopping directly with a brand they’re loyal to. Hotel and airfare shoppers both might look at metasearch to find the cheapest deal most convenient to their travel plans, but the elements that comprise “most convenient” are more complex when it comes to hotel research. While airline metasearch queries tend to be general, exploratory and exclusively price-based, hotel searches are more targeted and specific because of nuanced information consumers seek about particular hotel properties such as location, star ratings and traveler reviews. Get the full story at eMarketer