Evaluating the Web-Site & Digital Environment of Airbnb

Evaluating the Web-Site & Digital Environment of Airbnb

Sidhhant Kapai (IHM-A (The Taj Group of Hotels), University of Huddersfield, India)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/IJOM.2019070103

Abstract

What began as a company in San Francisco to aid unemployed Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia pay their housing rent and earn some extra cash, Airbnb today has disrupted and revolutionized the entire lodging industry by making provisions for additional rooms at the country's contemporaneous travel locations/destinations during peak seasons when hotel rooms are sold out and the remaining ones are available at skyrocketing prices In the following report, the current practices which have been implemented by Airbnb within the digital domain to enhance their brand recognition are discussed. The predominant sway of Airbnb's digital environment in a conventional, as well as new framework, have been previewed pertaining to focus on guest association and measurement of outcomes in digital interfaces.
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1. Introduction

Marketing is not the art of finding clever ways to dispose of what you make. It is the art of creating genuine customer value. (Kotler, 2014).

The above statement by Dr. Philip Kotler clearly communicates the vitality of marketing as an indispensable component of creating value for the customer. Pertaining to the hospitality industry in specific, a drastic paradigm shift has been observed from the application of traditional marketing practices to the adoption of marketing across digital platforms. A prime reason accounting for this shift has been the improvements within the domain of IT, technology and the spread of rapidly growing broadband services across the globe thereby forcing organizations to either adapt or perish to this segmental shift (Durmaz & Efendioglu, 2016; Kotler, Kartajaya & Setiawan, 2017; Worner & Weill, 2018).

Apart from being more economically feasible/cost effective (by leveraging Email marketing, SEO & social media platforms) as compared to the traditional marketing practices, digital marketing also goes ahead to facilitate interactions with the targeted audience and cater to the booming marketing of mobile customers (Kotler, Kartajaya, & Setiawan, 2017). This not only increases the accessibility and reach of the marketing campaigns but also goes ahead to fosters a two way communication between the customer and the business thereby earning customer trust (customer testimonials acting as social proof) and snowballing customer engagement (Rodriguez, 2018).

What began as a company in San Francisco to aid unemployed Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia pay their housing rent and earn some extra cash, Airbnb today has gone ahead to disrupt and revolutionize the entire lodging industry by making provisions for additional rooms at the country’s contemporaneous travel locations/destinations during peak seasons when hotel rooms are sold out and the remaining ones are available at skyrocketing prices (Salter, 2012; Gallaher, 2017; Gerdeman, 2018).

In the following report, the current practices implemented by Airbnb within the digital domain to enhance their brand recognition have been discussed. The predominant sway of Airbnb’s digital environment in a conventional as well as new framework have been previewed pertaining to focus on guest association and measurement of outcomes in a digital interface.

2. Case Study- A Journey Of Digital Transformation From Airbed & Breakfast To Airbnb

The Airbnb business model relies on two factors: the host and the traveler. The objective of their every marketing strategy is to embolden and reach out to the maximum number of people across the globe and convince them to become travelers &/or hosts. Taking the aforementioned factors into consideration, Airbnb has implemented several clever customer acquisition strategies by optimizing their digital marketing strategy:

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