Online discount travel seller Cheap Tickets and travel auctioneer SkyAuction.com announced Thursday that they will accept advertising for the first time.
The sites will advertise through an exclusive deal with DoubleClick’s Select Network, which will handle the sites’ sponsorship and ad sales, and serving through its DART platform.
Cheap Tickets’ Web site promotes itself as a one-stop travel superstore, offering special unpublished airfares, as well as discounted cruises, hotel accommodations and car rentals.
“The addition of these sites enables us to offer an even broader range of solutions to our advertisers and further expand our expertise in the online travel sector,” said DoubleClick Travel Network publisher Jane Butler. “These new sites join an already robust line-up of brands in the travel category including Fodors.com, Lowestfare.com and TravelWeb.”
What’s interesting about the announcement is that e-commerce sites typically focus on generating revenue through transactions, rather than ad sales. Many commerce sites shy away from major advertising deals for that reason.
However, the niche ad network business once run by WiseAds sold and served inventory entirely on e-commerce sites — and turned a fairly brisk trade doing so. That company was purchased recently by About.com, which said it intends to roll its publishers into its Luna affiliate network. With e-commerce players generally suffering in the current business climate, it’s no surprise that they’re looking for alternative sources of revenue.
“With more than 75,000 unique visitors each day, Cheaptickets.com offers advertisers tremendous exposure to a large and sophisticated online audience of well-traveled, well-educated consumers,” said Cheap Tickets president and chief operating officer Sam Galeotos.
“DoubleClick’s thorough understanding of this marketplace will enable us to offer advertisers targeted reach across our vast consumer base of more than 7 million subscribers,” he added.
DoubleClick’s Travel network includes more than 1,200 publishers, including Rough Guides, Travelon, Travelscape, Trip.com, Travelzoo and Uniglobe.