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Google’s algorithm takes its toll on Expedia as executives resign

Google’s algorithm takes its toll on Expedia as executives resign

By: Muhammad Abdul-Wakeel

Mubasher: Markets are worried over the headwind hitting Washington-based travel technology company Expedia after its CEO Mark Okerstrom and CFO Alan Pickerill were forced to resign following a clash with the board.

Giving Expedia’s disappointing Q3 results, there is a general consensus that the resign of Okerstrom and Pickerill was the result of a disagreement with the company’s board over direction and growth prospects, head of travel & tourism at GlobalData, Nick Wyatt, said.

“Headwinds related to Google’s search algorithm reducing visibility on search results were blamed for those results. Google’s influence in the online travel space will only grow so the board having concerns about this and a lack of a plan to counter it, therefore, makes sense,” Wyatt noted.

Expedia is in need of finding new CEO and CFO that are capable to face up to the challenge because the impact of Google on online travel and online travel agencies is not likely to be mitigated in the near future, he suggested.

Wyatt concluded: “It will be fascinating to see what path Expedia takes as it looks to navigate the choppy waters of Google and improved hotel direct booking incentives.”