The importance of reviews in Hotel

When travelers search for a hotel to stay at, they conduct various searches across multiple online platforms before finally clicking the booking confirmation button. Guest reviews are certainly a decisive factor in the initial screening process. Positive reviews are a crucial element in the decision-making process and positively contribute to convincing the traveler to choose one property over another. On the other hand, it has been shown that negative reviews prompt the user to search for other options in less than 30 seconds.

How to respond to guest reviews

The fear of encountering a negative review should never discourage hotel ownership/management from seeking and collecting feedback from their guests. Travelers know they could come across a negative review, but it is the way it is handled by the property that makes the difference. Providing a response is always a sign of an active and receptive customer service that genuinely takes care of the customer experience and oversees all moments of contact and relationship with the end user. Furthermore, it helps contain the impact of a negative review, especially if the response is personal and honest.

Here are some suggestions for responding to less than 5-star reviews with confidence and professionalism.

  • – Personalized conversational tone, address the guest by name, thank them for their feedback, and let them know you are listening. Do not give a standardized response. This will only push people away further.
  • – Acknowledge the problem and show a real willingness to do things right and better. Be empathetic and apologize. But do not defend yourself. Remember that you are not just talking to a single guest, but to all those who read the review and, consequently, your response.
  • – Try to respond promptly, within 24 hours. Beyond this time limit, it may be perceived as a lack of concern for the guest experience.

Of course, not all reviews are negative. In the presence of positive feedback, it is good practice to be kind, never forgetting to thank the user for sharing their experience. It is good to communicate how important the review is for the property and the team.

Finally, reviews can also be used in all your marketing campaigns to strengthen loyalty and carefully build your value proposition.

  • Spread positive reviews from your customers on marketing channels, such as social media and email campaigns.
  • Highlight and promote your overall star rating.
  • Publish anonymous quotes from positive reviews, as well as more detailed stories.

Learning from Guest Feedback

Reviews are not only useful to travelers as a decision-making parameter (e.g. “where to stay?”). In fact, timely use of reviews leads to improvement in guest experience in every aspect and ultimately to business results. Guest loyalty has a significant impact on revenue, so it is important to dedicate the right resources to customer service and review reading. A proactive and dynamic approach, aimed at capturing the evolving needs of customers, can even lead to discovering potential hidden problems before they become more complex.

When faced with negative feedback about the quality of a service or the cleanliness of a room, it is important to acknowledge the mistake and try to avoid it in the future. In particular, the topics that are important to visitors and guide the decision-making process in choosing one property over another are:

  • Cleanliness of the hotel, room, and bathroom
  • Cleanliness, size, and comfort of the bed
  • Difficulty/efficiency in checking in
  • Closed or unavailable services

These are just some tips that we wanted to share with our community, to emphasize the importance of reviews.

Insights and Statistics

According to some statistics, 73% of travelers read an average of 9 reviews per property. Of these, 78% are interested in the cleanliness of the rooms, 68% want to investigate the overall condition of the property, and finally 49% check the quality of customer care and service. 40% of users have stated that reviews play an even more decisive role following the pandemic. Moreover, it is worth noting that travelers pay attention not only to the intrinsic content of reviews, but also to the mode of response by the properties themselves. In fact, 91% of travelers state that hotel owners/managers should respond to negative reviews.

For every business activity, collecting feedback from customers is essential to improve one’s offering, customer experience, and customer care, which in turn are fundamental pillars of loyalty. For lodging facilities, customer care, in a broad sense, becomes a true strategic asset, and thanks to the careful use of data collected through feedback, there is a decisive improvement in the customer experience.

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