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App reviews and hiring are up for Tripadvisor. Steve Kaufer explains what's next.

2 months ago by Jon Marino in Emerging Talent
Tripadvisor co-founder, president and CEO Steve Kaufer [Getty Images]

TripAdvisor is having a weird 2019. 

Whenever its app rating gets better, its share performance seemingly gets worse. Tripadvisor ($NASDAQ:TRIP) shares are down nearly 25% in 2019, but when co-founder, president and CEO Steve Kaufer spoke at the Skift Global Forum in midtown Manhattan, he seemed optimistic about changes coming to the travel brand's platform - as well as its future. 

Last year TripAdvisor unveiled a new look for the app, which was apparently well-received by its users - its Apple ($NASDAQ:AAPL) App Store Average Rating is nearly 4.45, an outstanding number reflecting that around 9 of 10 users are providing the product with a solid review. That upgrade last year paved the way for Kaufer's announcement at Skift's event. 

The company aims to improve user experience by relying less upon user-generated reviews, Kaufer announced September 18, and more upon new integrations into its platform, including recommendations from social media influencers. 

As part of the company's transition, it has also been scaling up. Job postings grew at TripAdvisor 90% across all 2019, and rose another 23% so far this year. 

"This is our opportunity to be more transparent with the work we put in over the years," Kaufer said.

For a company that has spent years harnessing the social networking aspect of global travel, it is a surprise to see our final chart. Facebook ($NASDAQ:FB) Talking About Count measures how often people are mentioning the brand on social media, and it is down relative to 2018. However, if Kaufer's plan to integrate more influencers into the platform is a success, TripAdvisor should expect to be generating more buzz soon. 

About the Data: 

Thinknum tracks companies using information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales. 

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Jon Marino

Jon Marino is Thinknum's finance editor, covering the impacts of alternative data on public companies and investors. Prior to joining Thinknum, Jon worked in the ...

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