TripAdvisor – whether you love it loathe it – is almost essential to all hosts and hoteliers for their business to succeed. TripAdvisor now has an incredible 390 million unique visitors a month for you to take advantage of. Reviews on TripAdvisor have a huge impact on a potential guest’s decision on where they want to stay. In a 2017 survey, TripAdvisor revealed that:
- 83% of people use reviews to help them pick the right hotel.
- 80% read at least 6-12 reviews prior to booking
- 53% will not commit to booking until they have read reviews.
We can see just how big of an impact review sites are for all hosts and hoteliers. So if you’re not receiving new feedback regularly, you could be losing out to your competitors. Since TripAdvisor is one of the most trusted travel sites on the internet, this is the perfect place to enhance your presence online and create a rapport with former and future guests. But it’s not always easy to know how to manage your reviews, so we put together our top tips in order to succeed on TripAdvisor:
1. Always respond to positive reviews
The website can act as a kind of forum, where the guesthouse owner can interact with previous and potential guests. When a user leaves a review of their stay, whether it be good or bad, take the time to respond to all guest reviews.
If visitors to your property have enjoyed themselves, then they can share this with others directly by responding to queries and contributing to discussions. You too can jump in here; if there is a conversation going on between users who maybe have a question relating to your local area or accommodation, you, as an authoritative voice, can offer some help, which will give you the edge over other establishments in the area.
- Firstly, you should acknowledge great reviews and thank them for leaving the review.
- Then re-iterate the reviewer’s positive response and use it as a chance to upsell.
- Make the response personal rather than a standard template.
- Share the review on social media to encourage new guests.
2. Encourage great reviews
To avoid complaints, you should include a description of your guesthouse. Essentially, you need to give a positive and honest idea of what visitors can expect when they come to stay with you.
- Put a reminder on guests’ invoices to remind them to leave reviews.
- Send an email to guests a few days after their stay to thank them for their stay and ask them to leave a review.
- If you’ve really bonded with a guest and you know they’ve had a great stay, explain to them how important reviews are to your business.
- For more advice, read our guide on getting great guest reviews.
3. Make sure you reply to negative reviews
Users can interact with each other and share travel experiences on TripAdvisor, which is like an online word-of-mouth recommendation. If they gave you a bad review, you’ll want to nip it in the bud so future guests can see that you handle criticism with grace and you care about your guests.
- Thank them for taking the time to write the review and offer an apology
- It’s important that you don’t get defensive – you can turn this negative review into a positive.
- Explain what action will resolve the issue and how you can rectify their complaint.
- Try and take the messages to private messaging to resolve the issue, if you can.
- If someone brings up an infrastructure issue, thank them and let them know you may change it in the future.
- For more advice on preventing bad reviews, read our guide.
4. Be one step ahead
You should always try to resolve the issue before the guest leaves. If a guest has complained throughout their stay try and deal with this as it is happening. If they are still not happy – try and turn it around with a slight discount on their bill or a discounted repeat visit.
5. Do not give in to blackmail
Occasionally, a bad apple can demand a discount at the end of their stay for no reason at all. They may use their power to leave reviews on TripAdvisor as a weapon to get a cheaper rate. Never give in to these guests and only use freebies and discounts to legitimate complaints.
6. Help is at hand
One of our customers The Arthington Guest House has over 1,000 excellent reviews on TripAdvisor so we asked them how they encouraged their reviews:
“The internet profile is so important to any business, especially in this industry but we do realise that you can’t please everybody all the time. And most of our guests do actually find us via these review sites, so they are TripAdvisor savvy. Obviously, we would prefer if people approached us directly if they have any negative comments, but if there are any negative comments posted, we check to see if there is anything we can do to address them and see if it’s something we can do to improve, and if we can we do it. Or if it’s just that we haven’t met their expectations, there’s not a lot we can do. Sometimes people don’t know the difference between what a B&B can offer compared to what a hotel offers. Mainly that’s the size of rooms, and size of bathrooms, but at the end of the day, we are a B&B guesthouse and proud to be that. But we do encourage people to give us feedback, which helps us grow as a business.”
TripAdvisor advice from 2016’s best small hotel in the world, Edgar House.
What’s more, eviivo is partnered with TripAdvisor, meaning that we are able to help you to set up your TripAdvisor profile and power your bookings. You’ll be reaching out to over 60 million potential visitors from all corners of the planet in no time.
We understand that dealing with your online profile and customer reviews can be time-consuming, which is why we developed our award-winning hotel booking software.