How many guests choose to stay at your property based on the reviews they read on Google, TripAdvisor, or Booking.com?
NB: This is an article from TrustYou
Nowadays, we can’t imagine making a buying or booking decision before reading reviews, watching an expert opinion on YouTube, or just researching more about the product or service we are interested in. For the hospitality industry, reviews are essential from the booking process to the post-stay survey. “Where should I stay?” and “Why should I stay there?” are usually the questions that come to mind after choosing the travel destination.
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A TrustYou study shows that a crashing majority of us – more than 9 out of 10 people – read travel reviews prior to booking
We believe that responding to guest reviews is what differentiates a hotel that is truly focused on its customers from an average one. Being responsive to guest feedback comes with many benefits for hotels. Here are some examples:
- Your chances of influencing a booking decision increase.
Our own data shows that replying to more reviews has a positive impact on direct bookings and revenue. Google has also confirmed that responding to reviews improves your business’s local SEO, making you more visible to staycationers or those looking to host an event at your property.
- You increase the chances of your guests booking a return stay.
- You prove to your guests that their experience and well-being are important to you.
- You receive more reviews, therefore, collecting data helps your staff and potential guests have an accurate overview of how you are perceived externally and what you have to offer.
- You are staying ahead of your competition.
Our research shows that on average, 4 out of 10 reviews receive a reply. This is based on the reviews that can be responded to, excluding all sources that do not allow for responses. When looking at the data we noticed that some of the reviews received a reply even a couple of months after they were published. This is another way of differentiating yourself from your competitors – by replying promptly to your guest reviews.
Things to Consider When Responding to Guest Reviews
You just received a new review from one of your guests. Now what? How do you make sure that you’re crafting your answer in a way that benefits your hotel and also your guest? Here are some important tips to keep in mind when responding:
- Be kind, professional, and genuine
- Respond as soon as possible
- Personalize your response whenever possible
- Thank the guest for their feedback
- Whether it is a greeting, or you go the extra mile and answer to your reviews in a different language, make sure your international guests feel special. Use some key phrases in their own language if possible.
- Give credit to the staff, especially if someone is specifically mentioned
- Be creative and find different ways to express yourself
- Invite the guest back for another visit
We’ve also created an easy-to-follow response structure to guest reviews: