IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/jeczfn/v126y2019i1d10.1007_s00712-018-0612-6.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Price competition in the presence of a web aggregator

Author

Listed:
  • Oksana Loginova

    (University of Missouri)

  • Andrea Mantovani

    (University of Bologna)

Abstract

In this paper we examine the impact of a web aggregator on firms and consumers in a horizontally differentiated market. When a firm pays a fee to be listed on the aggregator’s website, its location and price become observable to e-users (consumers who visit the website). We consider two settings, depending on the possibility for online firms to offer discounts to e-users. In equilibrium, not all firms will go online—some will choose to remain offline. Online firms attract more customers due to the higher level of information, but face a tougher price competition. When the proportion of e-users is relatively low, price discrimination may hurt the firms. Therefore, less of them can afford to go online. The opposite holds when e-users predominate; price discrimination yields a higher number of online firms than uniform pricing. Finally, we evaluate the aggregator’s optimal policy regarding the fee and whether to impose uniform pricing or to allow price discrimination. We discover that, unless the proportion of e-users is relatively low, the aggregator induces only a few firms to go online.

Suggested Citation

  • Oksana Loginova & Andrea Mantovani, 2019. "Price competition in the presence of a web aggregator," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 126(1), pages 43-73, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jeczfn:v:126:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1007_s00712-018-0612-6
    DOI: 10.1007/s00712-018-0612-6
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://link.springer.com/10.1007/s00712-018-0612-6
    File Function: Abstract
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1007/s00712-018-0612-6?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dina Mayzlin & Yaniv Dover & Judith Chevalier, 2014. "Promotional Reviews: An Empirical Investigation of Online Review Manipulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(8), pages 2421-2455, August.
    2. Hilger, James & Rafert, Greg & Villas-Boas, Sofia Berto, 2007. "Expert Opinion and the Demand for Experience Goods: An Experimental Approach," CUDARE Working Papers 6055, University of California, Berkeley, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    3. Varian, Hal R, 1980. "A Model of Sales," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(4), pages 651-659, September.
    4. Greg Shaffer & Z. John Zhang, 2002. "Competitive One-to-One Promotions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(9), pages 1143-1160, September.
    5. Aguirre Pérez, Iñaki, 2011. "Welfare Effects of Third-Degree Price Discrimination: Ippolito Meets Schmalensee and Varian," IKERLANAK 2011-54, Universidad del País Vasco - Departamento de Fundamentos del Análisis Económico I.
    6. Galeotti, Andrea & Moraga-González, José Luis, 2009. "Platform intermediation in a market for differentiated products," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 417-428, May.
    7. Chrysanthos Dellarocas, 2006. "Strategic Manipulation of Internet Opinion Forums: Implications for Consumers and Firms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(10), pages 1577-1593, October.
    8. Caillaud, Bernard & Jullien, Bruno, 2003. "Chicken & Egg: Competition among Intermediation Service Providers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(2), pages 309-328, Summer.
    9. Volker Nocke & Martin Peitz & Konrad Stahl, 2007. "Platform Ownership," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(6), pages 1130-1160, December.
    10. Thomas Gehrig, 1993. "Intermediation in Search Markets," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 97-120, March.
    11. Schmalensee, Richard, 1981. "Output and Welfare Implications of Monopolistic Third-Degree Price Discrimination," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(1), pages 242-247, March.
    12. Lewis, Tracy R & Sappington, David E M, 1994. "Supplying Information to Facilitate Price Discrimination," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 35(2), pages 309-327, May.
    13. Belleflamme, Paul & Peitz, Martin, 2010. "Platform competition and seller investment incentives," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 1059-1076, November.
    14. Erik Brynjolfsson & Michael D. Smith, 2000. "Frictionless Commerce? A Comparison of Internet and Conventional Retailers," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(4), pages 563-585, April.
    15. Narasimhan, Chakravarthi, 1988. "Competitive Promotional Strategies," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 61(4), pages 427-449, October.
    16. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2003. "Platform Competition in Two-Sided Markets," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(4), pages 990-1029, June.
    17. Thomas Gehrig, 1993. "Intermediation in Search Markets," Discussion Papers 1058, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    18. Fiona Scott Morton & Florian Zettelmeyer & Jorge Silva‐Risso, 2001. "Internet Car Retailing," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(4), pages 501-519, December.
    19. Chakravarthi Narasimhan, 1984. "A Price Discrimination Theory of Coupons," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 3(2), pages 128-147.
    20. Steven M. Shugan, 2004. "The Impact of Advancing Technology on Marketing and Academic Research," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 23(4), pages 469-475.
    21. Iñaki Aguirre & Simon Cowan & John Vickers, 2010. "Monopoly Price Discrimination and Demand Curvature," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1601-1615, September.
    22. Varian, Hal R, 1985. "Price Discrimination and Social Welfare," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 870-875, September.
    23. Michael Anderson & Jeremy Magruder, 2012. "Learning from the Crowd: Regression Discontinuity Estimates of the Effects of an Online Review Database," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(563), pages 957-989, September.
    24. Inaki Aguirre, 2012. "Welfare Effects of Third-Degree Price Discrimination: Ippolito Meets Schmalensee and Varian," Chapters, in: Rosario Laratta (ed.), Social Welfare, IntechOpen.
    25. Krishnan S. Anand & Ravi Aron, 2003. "Group Buying on the Web: A Comparison of Price-Discovery Mechanisms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(11), pages 1546-1562, November.
    26. Kurt R. Brekke & Luigi Siciliani & Odd Rune Straume, 2017. "Horizontal mergers and product quality," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 50(4), pages 1063-1103, November.
    27. Jeffrey R. Brown & Austan Goolsbee, 2002. "Does the Internet Make Markets More Competitive? Evidence from the Life Insurance Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(3), pages 481-507, June.
    28. Zheyin (Jane) Gu & Ying Xie, 2013. "Facilitating Fit Revelation in the Competitive Market," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(5), pages 1196-1212, May.
    29. Watanabe, Makoto, 2010. "A model of merchants," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(5), pages 1865-1889, September.
    30. James Hilger & Greg Rafert & Sofia Villas-Boas, 2011. "Expert Opinion and the Demand for Experience Goods: An Experimental Approach in the Retail Wine Market," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 1289-1296, November.
    31. Hui Song, 2017. "Ordered search with asymmetric product design," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 121(2), pages 105-132, June.
    32. Michael R. Baye & John Morgan, 2001. "Information Gatekeepers on the Internet and the Competitiveness of Homogeneous Product Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 454-474, June.
    33. Benjamin Edelman & Sonia Jaffe & Scott Duke Kominers, 2010. "To Groupon or Not to Groupon: The Profitability of Deep Discounts," Harvard Business School Working Papers 11-063, Harvard Business School, revised Jan 2014.
    34. George A. Akerlof, 1970. "The Market for "Lemons": Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500.
    35. Xiaoqing Jing & Jinhong Xie, 2011. "Group Buying: A New Mechanism for Selling Through Social Interactions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(8), pages 1354-1372, August.
    36. David A. Reinstein & Christopher M. Snyder, 2005. "The Influence Of Expert Reviews On Consumer Demand For Experience Goods: A Case Study Of Movie Critics," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(1), pages 27-51, March.
    37. Eyal Biyalogorsky & Eitan Gerstner & Barak Libai, 2001. "Customer Referral Management: Optimal Reward Programs," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(1), pages 82-95, August.
    38. Galeotti, Andrea & Moraga-González, José Luis, 2009. "Platform intermediation in a market for differentiated products," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 417-428, May.
    39. Steven C. Salop, 1979. "Monopolistic Competition with Outside Goods," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 141-156, Spring.
    40. Oksana Loginova, 2007. "Real and Virtual Competition," Working Papers 0715, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
    41. Yeon‐Koo Che & Ian Gale, 1997. "Buyer Alliances and Managed Competition," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(1), pages 175-200, March.
    42. Justin P. Johnson, 2017. "The Agency Model and MFN Clauses," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 1151-1185.
    43. Anindya Ghose & Panagiotis G. Ipeirotis & Beibei Li, 2012. "Designing Ranking Systems for Hotels on Travel Search Engines by Mining User-Generated and Crowdsourced Content," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 31(3), pages 493-520, May.
    44. Benjamin Edelman & Julian Wright, 2015. "Price Coherence and Excessive Intermediation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 130(3), pages 1283-1328.
    45. Mark Lijesen, 2013. "Hotelling’s webshop," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 109(2), pages 193-200, June.
    46. Bharat N. Anand & Ron Shachar, 2011. "Advertising, the matchmaker," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 42(2), pages 205-245, June.
    47. Rajiv Lal & Miklos Sarvary, 1999. "When and How Is the Internet Likely to Decrease Price Competition?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 18(4), pages 485-503.
    48. Fiona Scott Morton & Florian Zettelmeyer & Jorge Silva-Risso, 2001. "Internet Car Retailing," NBER Chapters, in: E-commerce, pages 501-519, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    49. Morton, Fiona Scott & Zettelmeyer, Florian & Silva-Risso, Jorge, 2001. "Internet Car Retailing," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(4), pages 501-519, December.
    50. J. Yannis Bakos, 1997. "Reducing Buyer Search Costs: Implications for Electronic Marketplaces," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 43(12), pages 1676-1692, December.
    51. Dina Mayzlin, 2006. "Promotional Chat on the Internet," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(2), pages 155-163, 03-04.
    52. Jinhong Xie & Steven M. Shugan, 2001. "Electronic Tickets, Smart Cards, and Online Prepayments: When and How to Advance Sell," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(3), pages 219-243, June.
    53. Qiang Gong & Qihong Liu & Yi Zhang, 2016. "Optimal product differentiation in a circular model," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 119(3), pages 219-252, November.
    54. Oksana Loginova, 2009. "Real And Virtual Competition," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 319-342, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Yijuan Chen & Xiangting Hu & Sanxi Li, 2022. "Complementarity between online and offline channels for quality signaling," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 135(1), pages 49-74, January.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. O. Loginova & A. Mantovani, 2015. "Information and Online Reviews," Working Papers wp996, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    2. Amedeo Piolatto, 2015. "Online booking and information: competition and welfare consequences of review aggregators," Working Papers 2015/11, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
    3. Javier Donna & Andre Trindade & Pedro Pereira & Tiago Pires, 2018. "Measuring the Welfare of Intermediation in Vertical Markets," 2018 Meeting Papers 984, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Donna, Javier D. & Pereira, Pedro & Pires, Tiago & Trindade, Andre, 2018. "Measuring the Welfare of Intermediaries in Vertical Markets," MPRA Paper 90465, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Moraga-Gonzalez, Jose L. & Wildenbeest, Matthijs R., 2011. "Comparison sites," IESE Research Papers D/933, IESE Business School.
      • Jose Luis Moraga-Gonzalez & Matthijs R. Wildenbeest, 2011. "Comparison Sites," Working Papers 2011-04, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
    6. David Ronayne, 2021. "Price Comparison Websites," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 62(3), pages 1081-1110, August.
    7. Michael R. Baye & John Morgan, 2009. "Brand and Price Advertising in Online Markets," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 55(7), pages 1139-1151, July.
    8. Michael R. Baye & John Morgan, 2005. "Probabilistic Patents," Microeconomics 0504004, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Belleflamme,Paul & Peitz,Martin, 2015. "Industrial Organization," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781107687899.
    10. Fay, Scott, 2008. "Selling an opaque product through an intermediary: The case of disguising one's product," Journal of Retailing, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 59-75.
    11. Heiko Karle & Martin Peitz & Markus Reisinger, 2020. "Segmentation versus Agglomeration: Competition between Platforms with Competitive Sellers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 128(6), pages 2329-2374.
    12. Backus, Matthew R. & Podwol, Joseph Uri & Schneider, Henry S., 2014. "Search costs and equilibrium price dispersion in auction markets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 173-192.
    13. Paul Belleflamme & Martin Peitz, 2019. "Managing competition on a two‐sided platform," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(1), pages 5-22, January.
    14. Gautier, Pieter A. & Hu, Bo & Watanabe, Makoto, 2016. "Marketmaking Middlemen," IZA Discussion Papers 10152, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    15. Eymann, Torsten (Ed.), 2007. "Tagungsband zum Doctoral Consortium der WI 2007 [WI2007 Doctoral Consortium Proceedings]," Bayreuth Reports on Information Systems Management 24, University of Bayreuth, Chair of Information Systems Management.
    16. Yuxin Chen & Ganesh Iyer & V. Padmanabhan, 2002. "Referral Infomediaries," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 21(4), pages 412-434, May.
    17. Oksana Loginova, 2007. "Real and Virtual Competition," Working Papers 0715, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
    18. Chuan He & Yuxin Chen, 2006. "Research Note—Managing e-Marketplace: A Strategic Analysis of Nonprice Advertising," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(2), pages 175-187, 03-04.
    19. Anindya Ghose & Avi Goldfarb & Sang Pil Han, 2013. "How Is the Mobile Internet Different? Search Costs and Local Activities," Information Systems Research, INFORMS, vol. 24(3), pages 613-631, September.
    20. Nestor Duch-Brown & Bertin Martens, 2014. "Consumer benefits from the EU Digital Single Market: evidence from household appliances markets," JRC Working Papers on Digital Economy 2014-03, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Online reviews aggregators; Price discrimination; Competition;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jeczfn:v:126:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1007_s00712-018-0612-6. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Sonal Shukla or Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.