Monday, September 10, 2007

Trade Me launches Travelbug

NZ online auction giant Trade Me announced in March this year that it was going to enter the online travel market in NZ. The site - Travelbug - has just been launched, focuses only on New Zealand accommodation and claims 1,500 accommodation providers.

As I mentioned in my post on their announcement, there is a challenge for any ecommerce company from a specific category to shift traffic to another market sector. Pricegrabber in the US famously tried to add travel to their online shopping meta-search model in 2005 only to shut it without a word sometime in early 2007. As I discussed in a post covering that closure there is a history of retailers trying to move from selling electronic, clothing, music, books and toys to travel and failing.

Trade Me has such a traffic lead in ecommerce in New Zealand that it might prove the (short) online history books wrong.

I picked up the launch story in the nzherald blog section.

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