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Policy Study
A Study of Competition Issues in the Platform Market: Focusing on Search Ranking

December 31, 2019

  • Author KIM. Minjung
  • Series No. Policy Study 2019-05
  • Language Korean
PDF
Policy Study
A Study of Competition Issues in the Platform Market: Focusing on Search Ranking

December 31, 2019

PDF
Focusing on search rankings, this study analyzes the possibility that online platform signaling mechanisms can be commercialized and used to distort market competition. It first explores Europe’s institutional changes with respect to the provision of search results and information by online platforms. The European Commission introduced new rules on P2B trading practices, and is also pushing for amendments to consumer laws. The regulations ensure that platform users are clearly informed about the main parameters determining ranking and whether the ranking has been directly/indirectly affected by any payments made by the business operator.

Furthermore, this study collected and empirically analyzed panel data on search rankings and hotel star ratings, significant matching mechanisms of the hotel reservation platform. It was found that the ratings given by the platform themselves are often much higher than those given officially, meaning that the star ratings may be used as a marketing tool rather than having informative value reliable signal of quality. Another statistical analysis of the relationship between search ranking, hotel rating and promotional tags reveals a weak possibility that hotels with higher platform rating than official rating are more likely to rank higher in search results. Given its influence on users, the transparency and fairness of platforms’ matching mechanism should be enhanced. That is, online platforms are responsible for providing users with clear to distinguish between objective information and advertisement or paid information in determining ratings and information tags as well as search rankings.
 
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Office of Global Economy
Providing Economic Forecast and Macroeconomic Policy Direction, the Groundwork for a Brighter Future

The Department of Macroeconomics is conducting researches on the macro economy and macroeconomic policy, particularly focusing on suggesting the analysis of macroeconomic trends and current status of the economy at home and abroad, the economic forecast, and the policy direction of the macro economy. The Department is also in charge of establishing, sustaining and maintaining various econometric models, based on which it analyses policy effects and develops a long-term economic forecast.

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  • Economic trend analysis, short- and long-term forecast
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Department of Macroeconomic Policy
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  • CHO, Byungkoo On leave

    Director and Vice President, Department of North Korean Economy

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    Research Associate

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  • CHUN, Eunkyung

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