Investor's Business Daily has reported RBC Capital's take on the travel business, based in art on discussions with Skift researchers.
- Google parent Alphabet is unlikely to compete head-to-head with Expedia or Priceline.
- Google accounted for about 90% of digital travel advertising in 2016, resulting in revenues of $12B.
- Priceline, Expedia and TripAdvisor were the biggest buyers of ad space on Google.
- RBC Capital doesn't believe Google will ever become an OTA.
- Google will continue to dominate online travel advertising despite inroads by Facebook, because Facebook is unable to capture travel intent as Google can.
- Google has owned Frommer's since 2012.
- Amazon shuttered its Amazon Destinations travel business in 2015.
Takeaway: Google is smart to stick to its knitting, go on raking in ad dollars, and let others fight it out in the OTA space.