For hotels to sustain a profitable revenue stream there are many factors they must maintain. One of those is their online presence and reputation – and the clearest indicator of a hotel’s reputation is often found in online reviews.
Review websites such as TripAdvisor and Yelp can have a significant impact on how travellers choose their accommodation. Most of the time, the general consensus is what people will accept so it’s vital that your hotel has a reputation for quality service and professional standards. A recent Barclays study reveals there is an extra £3.2 billion to be earned over the next decade if the hotel sector becomes more attentive to online reviews.
It’s important to remember that just because you are a three-star hotel, it doesn’t mean your reviews will be rated lower than those of a five-star hotel. People balance their reviews with their expectations so ratings often even themselves out across all hotels. This is reflected in recent research that showed just a 0.74 ratings gap between two-and-a-half star hotels and five-star hotels.
It might be easy to say managing online reviews is too time-consuming to be bothered with and that it won’t make any difference to the overall success of your property. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, it’s becoming more important as time goes by. This infographic will show just how much…
Knowing how much stock travellers put in online reviews and reputations, it’s time to get serious about managing this sphere.
There are some interesting insights into what strategies are optimal.
It’s pertinent to note that with high class or boutique hotels, audience appreciation is higher if frontline staff respond to feedback with longer replies, while mid-market or budget properties see a better result when the owner/manager responds with a tighter answer.
Daniels College of Business also conducted a study that found hotels need to be extremely strategic with when they respond to reviews and in what manner.
Often half the battle is ensuring you get the time to respond to your reviews, the other half is remembering that the customer is always right and you should proceed with caution.
Some simple principles to keep in mind are to be positive, humble, helpful, and enthusiastic.
With the right online reputation management, your hotel has a great chance to increase revenue and secure return business.
Increasing your positive ratings will act as a powerful electronic word of mouth, and also help your hotel’s media reputation.