There has been an explosion of guest review sites over the years, but everyone in the hospitality industry knows that TripAdvisor is the biggest player. Guests who are looking to book a hotel in your area are typically going to go to Expedia or TripAdvisor first. This allows them to gain a complete view of all the hotels in the area and make an educated decision on where they want to book. TripAdvisor isn’t just for transient guests use anymore, corporations are now asking for a hotels TripAdvisor ranking during the RFP season. They are doing their homework on the hotels in the area, so how do you set your hotel apart from the rest?
Take time to answer each review with a personal touch. Let’s face it, General Managers are constantly moving and may fall into the trap of using a canned response when responding to a review. Guests notice things like this and it comes across as you are in a hurry and not really listening to what a guest is saying. Instead of replying to each review with the same message, reply using the same verbiage a guest used. If they say they loved swimming in the pool, reply by saying how thrilled you are to hear how much they enjoyed the pool. This shows that you have read and understood the message. It is also a great way to let potential guests know that you have a swimming pool on site that guests enjoy.
Be proactive, never reactive. It happens, all hotels receive a negative review. How you respond to this review sets the tone for potential guests looking to book your property. If you are defensive in your review, it can turn potential guests off. Take the time to research the guest’s issues and address them individually. Offer an apology and list out what corrective actions you are taking to fix the error. People are forgiving and tend to understand that things happen, it’s how you respond to adversity that lets guests know they will be taken care of.
Hotel content. Many hotels will upload a handful of pictures to their TripAdvisor page and think that’s all they need. Make sure you have pictures of all the amenities you offer and from different angles. Ensure you have every room type presented in your pictures, with descriptions on what is included in the room. Guests want to know what they are getting when they book with you, so take this opportunity to show them.
Your interaction with guests isn’t bound strictly to their website. Have you been awarded a Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor? Make sure add their complimentary widgets to your emails. Hang your certificate in a noticeable area on or around the front desk. You’ve worked hard to earn this award, shout it from the rooftops!