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Competitive strategies implemented by Expedia in 2001 and their evaluation

Discuss about the Information Management for Strategic Analysis.

Expedia.com is a leading online travel service in the United States, with localized versions in the United Kingdom, Canada, and Germany. The market in which Expedia operates is highly competitive. The company had to find competitive strategies in order to get competitive advantage in such competitive market. The company used online or web based travel agency that distributes and develops global travel services. Mentioned below are the competitive strategies utilized by expedia.com to lead in the market.

Expedia has been focusing on online information distribution system to engage its customers; the information system at expedia.com doesn’t need to handle customers individually. An automatic notification and information is sent to the users who have logged in to their portal. This service helps users to stay updated about the flights, hotels, car rental and any other information associated with their trip. Company has been able to handle wide range of individual customers with help of web services as there is no need to manage and handle an individual personally until there is no issue in the booking. Expedia.com has made it place in the market by directly serving its customers and connecting with service providers (Hotels, car rental companies and airlines). It works as an intermediate between service provider and customers by making the service easy to access and operate to customers along with rewards (Expedia, 2001).

 The information system of the expedia.com supports all digital devices to access the information such as desktop and cell phones or any other web-enabled device. The architecture works with internet and non-internet devices as well. Expedia uses Microsoft.Net passport (system development vendor) which made it first mover in the market. Expedia provides excellent value to its customers with help of technology.

In addition to technology and unique services of Expedia.com, its marketing and customer engagement process has also been a key strategy of expedia.com to stay competitive in the market. Such as last minute deals and discounts where Expedia has list of hotels, vacation packages, and flights to travel in next two weeks.  In addition to that user can sign up to get latest deals and discounts in their email address. All these things makes Expedia leader in the travel industry (Expedia, 2001).

There are so many tools that can be used to evaluate and analyze the strategy of an organization such as PESTEL analysis, SWOT analysis and Porter’s five forces. These tools help to determine whether the strategy complies with internal and external factors of an organization or not. The evaluation has been done using porter’s five forces method.

How current information technologies/information systems can help Expedia to achieve their goals

Strategic evaluation and analysis

Source: (Zanoni, 2012).

Expedia has been able to make its position in travel industry with help of its unique services and technology investment. The company has been first mover in travel industry which supports web based information on internet and non-internet based devices. The easy accessibility of information on Expedia has made in attractive to its customers. The company has been leader in the market and continuously improving its services in the market. In this scenario, the competitors of the Expedia such as Lastminute.com and Priceline.com and traditional travel agencies such as Rosenbluth are working to get competitive advantage via information system but leader has all the trust and grip to market so threat to new entry in online travel service is low for the Expedia because its continuously making investments in technological growth (Expedia, 20013).

Supplier power is higher in case of Expedia.com as it is connected to best airlines, hotels and car rentals that can dominant the prices and customers have choice for such suppliers so suppler power is high in case of Expedia.com. The company has been able to lead in USA because of good relationship management with its service providers so Expedia strategy to stay in the market is efficient and effective as well.

Buyer power is low in case of Expedia as company provides unique set of services that no other company does. The features offered by Expedia makes buyer power low as they don’t have options compared to Expedia’s services.

Threat of substitution is low for the Expedia because it is the age of online services and companies are moving to this age and Expedia has grown in this age only. So threat of substitution is less for Expedia.

Expedia is been sensitive in any change associated with competition, supplier consolidation and business model. Therefore, competitive rivalry is high for Expedia but strategies of Expedia are effective to control this rivalry.

Competitive strategies and intelligence on information system has been conducted by the Expedia.com I order to achieve the current opportunities of the market. After being top online travel company in USA, the next goal of the organization is to be leading company in all over the world. The company is looking for grabbing the opportunities of expansion in Asia and Europe. Expedia has expanded its presence in Asia-pacific region via strategic investments on technology, people and partnerships. Similarly, in Europe, Expedia has expanded to several countries (Wilczyński & Furlong, 2010). The main goal of the Expedia is to engage individual customers and to acquire service providers so that their customers can directly book from Expedia.

The company has been successful in achieving its goals because of the technology investment and being first mover in online travelling industry. In order to achieve its goal to be leader of the industry in World Wide Web the company needs to focus on CRM and resource planning. The organization can acquire service providers and can be leader of the market by engaging its customers. Information system and information technology has been playing a big role in success of Expedia and Expedia can acquires its new goals by integrating CRM and resource planning solutions provided by Microsoft.

Worldwide customer engagement is not an easy job for organizations especially when goal is to satisfy individual customers. The CRM has to be adaptive to catch all information about a customer like who is the customer, what they want and what are they doing. Microsoft dynamic CRM has ability to enable customer trust, sales, insights, loyalty towards company.  The advantages of Microsoft dynamic CRM online have been discussed below.

Microsoft dynamic CRM Allows more time to spend on selling rather than administrative tasks by utilizing intelligent sales capabilities of Microsoft dynamic CRM business software along with embedded Microsoft office capabilities.

Insightful and actionable information allows competitive intelligence. Microsoft dynamic CRM online provides intelligent lead management, streamlined goal management, comprehensive auditing and real time forecasts.

It allows Connected marketing that is collaborative and integrated via automatic tracking opt out and in preferences that further uncovers new leads and helps to understand social trends via social connectors. Effective document management is another feature of Microsoft dynamic CRM that provides fast track creation of campaign and marketing plan. Seamless event management and mobile productivity to access marketing budget, campaign information via any web enabled device or even via offline capability (Factors Affecting Customer Linking Capabilities and Customer Satisfaction in CRM, 2012).

Enterprise resource planning solution is an effective information system tool to redesign processes, make smarter decisions and for appropriate business growth. Microsoft dynamics AX supports hybrid cloud environment in order to meet requirement of organizations. The advantages of this information management solution have been listed below in consideration of Expedia.

Future investment and technology: Expedia is looking for expanding in order to achieve global success and Microsoft dynamic ERP solution is customizable solution that can support the changing needs of the organization for future endeavors. An organization can gain competitive advantage in any location with help of effective resource planning and management as technology can be imitated but resource cannot be. Microsoft ERP solution provides dynamic functionality for resource planning at different locations with centralized solution. Centralized solution provides an effective way to manage globalized resources (Microsoft, 2016).

Transforms business faster: ERP solution by Microsoft provides an effective IT tool that helps businesses to transform business faster in different locations such Expedia is looking for expansion which will need resource training and planning to understand existing business model and ERP solution helps to make this transform faster.

No replacement cost: Expedia is already using Microsoft platform so there is no replacement cost for Microsoft dynamic solution. Microsoft dynamic integrates multiple international locations or sites to parent solution (Tomic and Jovanovic, 2016).

Low deployment cost: Microsoft infrastructure provide efficient integration without any functionality issue which reduces the deployment cost.

There are so many things that I have learnt while doing this assignment. I would like to divide my reflection in three parts: Problems, solution and Lesson learnt. I found several problems while doing this assignment but research and my analytical skills helped me to come out from these problems.

Problems and solution

Analytical problems: In task 1 the need was to discuss and evaluate three competitive strategies of Expedia. I had no issues in finding this competitive strategy but I had problem at time of evaluation. Evaluation is basically analysis to determine whether the strategy is according to Market condition or not. The performance of Expedia was clearing effectiveness of its strategies. But I was troubling to find a framework that can justify the assumption. After that I searched for strategy analysis framework and tools and got PESTEL, SWOT and Porter’s five forces analysis. I could perform all three of them but due to lack of word count I selected porter’s five forces to evaluate the strategies of Expedia.

Research problems: In task 2, I need to identify two IT/IS solution that can help Expedia to achieve its current goals, the current goals of Expedia could be easily found and I got it easily. The next step was to identify solutions that can help Expedia to achieve its goals. I could not found until I didn’t started searching specifically such as Microsoft products for effective customer engagement.

Lesson Learnt

Research needs to be done with specific keywords and you must not be diverted to the topic or research goal. Sometime you need to assume few things in a case study which is correct but you need to justify why it is correct in order to make your point of view correct.

References

Zanoni, A. (2012). Strategic analysis. New York: Routledge.

Microsoft (2016). Microsoft Dynamics. Retrieved 5 July 2016, from https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics/erp-ax-overview.aspx

Wilczyński, B. & Furlong, E. (2010). Dynamic CRM occupancy reflects a temporal map of developmental progression. Mol Syst Biol, 6. https://dx.doi.org/10.1038/msb.2010.35

“Expedia”. (2013). IIC, 44(6), 740-740. https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40319-013-0097-3

Factors Affecting Customer Linking Capabilities and Customer Satisfaction in CRM. (2012). International Journal Of Customer Relationship Marketing And Management, 3(4), 16-30. https://dx.doi.org/10.4018/jcrmm.2012100102

Tomic, Z. & Jovanovic, M. (2016). ERP and CRM Data Integration. Managefon, 21(78), 63-72. https://dx.doi.org/10.7595/management.fon.2016.0008

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