With 490 million monthly users reading 1 billion Tripadvisor reviews and traveller opinions, Tripadvisor has more than earned its place in the hospitality industry. You can’t afford to not show up on your guest’s next search, but how do the Tripadvisor rankings and review scores work, and what can you do to leverage your listing to your advantage?
NB: This is an article from GuestRevu
Tripadvisor has adapted over the years, introducing new ways of ranking and sorting properties. All aim to improve the guest’s experience when searching for hotels. With various algorithm updates, Tripadvisor has finetuned the weighting of various factors such as location, booking popularity, pricing, availability, bubble ratings, and the Popularity Index (more on this later) when determining properties’ scoring and ranking.
Tripadvisor’s Popularity Index
The ranking of each property is heavily influenced by the Tripadvisor Popularity Index, a carefully crafted algorithm that aims to predict, based on scores and consistency of past reviews, what level of experience a property is likely to provide to a guest.
The purpose of the Popularity Index is to present travellers with the best options first, ensuring that their experience of the Tripadvisor website is useful and positive. It is important to note that the bubble rating is only one of the factors which influences the Popularity Index. Your popularity index is calculated from three factors:
Quality of reviews: The bubble rating given by travellers in reviews and is reflected in a single score of 1-5 based on a summary of both the written reviews and the overall score given by your guests.
Quantity of reviews: The number of reviews your property has
Recency of reviews: How recently your reviews were submitted
As it stands, the Popularity Index values consistency in score, recency and volume of reviews, it is, therefore, possible for hotels with a lower bubble rating to sometimes rank above hotels with a better bubble rating. Exactly how each of these factors is weighted, only Tripadvisor knows, but as an astute hotelier, you should focus on improving all of them.
The Popularity Ranking algorithm is designed to provide a statistical measure of confidence about the current experience at a business. As we accumulate more reviews on a business over time, we have more insight into the potential experience consumers can expect. Once we’ve reached a critical mass of reviews, we’re able to more accurately predict that business’s ranking.
It is also important to note that Tripadvisor’s Popularity Index takes into account other related businesses when determining a property’s ranking, so your property will be ranked in comparison to the other similar properties in your geographical area. Therefore, this ranking is always in flux, as one property moves up or down in ranking it will affect all of the other properties in the area, similarly as businesses receive reviews it can change the ranking of not just their property but yours as well.
Additionally, depending on which sorting option is selected, rankings can vary considerably. There are currently three main ways of sorting properties: