The Other Side of Technology Adoption: Examining the Relationships Between e-Commerce Expenses and Hotel Performance

Nan Hua, University of Central Florida
Cristian Morosan
Agnes DeFranco


As information technology (IT) increasingly permeates all aspects of the contemporary society, hotels have spent millions of dollars to deploy electronic commerce (e-commerce) tools and develop appropriate strategies to attract and retain guests. Yet, while the literature reflects the drivers of adopting certain e-commerce tools, it does not provide a conclusive answer regarding the effectiveness of e-commerce expenditures. Specifically, it is unclear whether such expenditures affect performance in terms of revenue and gross operating profit, or whether such effects are consistent over time and across different chain scales. Based on financial data reported by a sample of 275 hotels from 2007 through 2012, this study found that e-commerce expenses significantly and positively impacted rooms revenue for all sample years, except in 2007. When subgroup analyses were performed by chain scale, it was found that e-commerce expenses significantly contributed to the gross operating profit for midscale and upscale hotels but not for the luxury, upper upscale, and the upper midscale categories.