responding to reviews from guests

Travel’s not been abundant since Covid-19 started keeping us socially distant, and therefore online reviews have been pretty sparse, too.

NB: This is an article from GuestRevu

But, there’s still plenty of info on Tripadvisor for travellers wanting to relieve their pent-up travel passion, and enough examples of how (and how not) to respond to Tripadvisor reviews to get you back in the groove of managing your online reputation.

We scoured Tripadvisor for the best (and worst) Covid-era traveller reviews and then analysed these reviews, along with the management responses. As usual, there’s plenty to be learned from these examples of responses to reviews.

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How to respond to good reviews, with examples

Responding to a good review is so easy, some even wonder if it’s worth doing. The reviewer was happy, so why spend time on these reviews? The answer, as always with online reviews, is twofold. Firstly, the reviewer took time out of their day to share feedback about your business, and, in the case of a good review, promote it to others. It’s common courtesy to thank them, and it will further nurture the seed of loyalty the good experience has sown. 

Secondly, this reviewer isn’t the only one reading your reviews and responses. The way you respond to reviews, whether they are good, bad, or a bit of both, gives your potential guests, the ones browsing Tripadvisor (and other online review sites) an indication of the kind of interactions they will have with people at your establishment. 

Responding to a good review is quick and easy, and there’s a flop-proof recipe: 

  1. Address the user by their chosen username (if you’re using online reputation management software and are able to link a review to a guest profile, be careful not to use their real name by accident)
  2. Thank the reviewer for taking the time or making the effort to write a review
  3. Reiterate one key point in the review for the benefit of other readers
  4. Invite the reviewer to stay again
  5. Sign off with your name and job title

Although it’s tempting, don’t just copy the same response for all good reviews. This comes across as impersonal and insincere, and can even undo some of the positive impression given by the reviewer.

Example: good response to a good review

What Pandemic?

When you visit Crete and particularly Elounda Heights, for the most part, it is hard to believe the current pandemic is upon us. This is because of the welcoming, accommodating and genuine wish by everyone to make your stay as Normal as possible.

At no point did we feel in the slightest bit uncomfortable, unsafe or reminded of the woes going on worldwide (save for the constant news feed on the pool bar TV). Okay, so all the staff wear masks as mandated, but even though you cant see their mouths, you can tell by their eyes and actions that they are pleased to see each and every guest.

The standards of accommodation, food and cleanliness are as good as ever. In fact their standards are normally so good that it would be hard for them to do much more.

Natalia, Kostas and all the team are going a fabulous job in the face of these unprecedented challenges. We enjoyed our stay as much as ever, and probably more as we thought at one point we wouldn’t get to go. Having moved our stay from July to August we were lucky enough to get our holiday at our much loved Elounda Heights.

To those of you dithering over going this year, I say do it. If you can afford to take two weeks more off work when you get home thanks to our idiotic government, or are retired, just do it, you won’t regret it.

Date of stay: August 2020

Trip type: Traveled as a couple

pool heights, Ιδιοκτήτης at Elounda Heights (Adults only), responded to this review

Responded October 11, 2020

Dear Guy,

We are incredibly grateful that you took the time out to leave us a 5-Star review! We take pride in knowing our customers are happy with their experience in spite of the situation. Thanks for your support, we really appreciate it! Looking forward to seeing you again soon,

Regards, Natalia & Kostas.

The review is glowing, so it’s hard for management to get the response wrong, but Natalia & Kostas get it particularly right with their succinct reply. They address the reviewer by their username, and reiterate that the review was 5 stars, and that guests are happy despite “the situation”. 

Their gratitude for both the review and the custom seems sincere, and as an added bonus, the response is well-formatted, making it easy to read. Although they don’t include their job title, from the context of the review readers will have no doubt that the people at Elounda Heights put guest experience first.

Read rest of the article at GuestRevu