Search aggregators may not have the market power many have thought. Travel consumers demonstrate higher loyalties to specific airline brands over specific aggregator brands.

If you are a budget-conscious traveler, there is a chance you’ve used a travel site aggregator like Kayak or Expedia to book your flight. Or, perhaps you shopped around on multiple aggregators, and made your final booking on an airline website. Did you ever wonder if you were given all airline options, or what kind of itineraries you could have received had you explored all airline sites one by one? And between aggregators and airlines, who has the upper hand?
Those questions were on the minds of two data scientists who conducted a comprehensive study on who has more clout: the airline or the aggregator?
Search aggregators improve consumers’ search experience by providing a quick and comprehensive view of all available options. But those aggregators are facing increased scrutiny by regulatory authorities who fear that many firms are now at the mercy of aggregators and their ranking algorithms. This can pose significant operational, and even survival challenges for firms that are not part of an aggregator.

If you wish to find out more, have a look at the paper!