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Three Steps to a Better TripAdvisor Rating
By feature writer Jean Francois Mourier, CEO of REVPAR GURU
Booking a hotel room online requires a strong level of trust on the part of the consumer, because they aren¹t able to see the property until they arrive on their check-in date. This makes sites like TripAdvisor a very valuable tool for consumers. In fact, 86% of respondents to a recent MSNBC survey said that they rely on the reviews that they find on TripAdvisor (or other similar travel sites) before they make a purchasing decision.
According to ehotelier, an increase in your property¹s TripAdvisor rating can have a drastic impact on your revenues. If a hotel increases its TripAdvisor review score by one point, room rates can be increased by 11.2% without a drop in occupancy. A 1% increase in a hotel¹s online reputation score leads to a 0.89% increase in price (as measured by the hotel¹s ADR), up to 0.54% increase of occupancy and up to 1.42% increase in RevPAR.
If you aren¹t already closely monitoring your TripAdvisor rating, I¹m here to tell you that you need to start. And to help you do so, here are three steps that you can take to improve your TripAdvisor rating and your revenues.
Respond to Reviews
While it seems altogether too simple to actually have any effect on your rating, responding to both negative and positive reviews can have a huge impact. Seventy-six percent of travelers surveyed by TripAdvisor said they have a more positive view of owners who respond to online guest reviews. By doing so, you are showing potential customers that you pay attention and that you care whether your customers have the best possible stay at your property. Some hoteliers even find that they get more referrals from negative reviews being handled well (with professional, helpful responses) instead of positive reviews.
The best responses to customer reviews are:
Renovate to Eliminate Negative Reviews
In October 2012, TripAdvisor added a new policy that allows the removal of negative reviews when a hotel renovates. In order to have negative reviews erased, hotels are required to provide proof of the structural changes (building permits, materials invoices, press releases, etc.). Once the proof has been submitted to TripAdvisor, the reviews are deleted, leaving no indication that the hotel had once been rated poorly. This is a huge opportunity for hotels to start over with a clean slate, which can have a positive effect on the number of bookings generated through TripAdvisor which can be a highly profitable channel, as no commission fees are charged for bookings that are referred from the site.
Encourage & Incentivize Customers to Leave Reviews
The best way to ensure that your TripAdvisor rating is reflective of your hotel¹s actual performance is to encourage past guests to leave a review. Often, it is the customers who have negative experiences who are the most vocal on review sites, so encouraging past guests who have had positive experiences to do a review is also important.
By following these three tips, you will find that your TripAdvisor rating increases drastically. If you don¹t believe me, ask Christelle Tropina, the General Manager at Hotel Impala, a luxurious boutique hotel in Miami Beach. When Christelle started at Hotel Impala, the property was rated 180 out of 196 hotels in Miami Beach. In only three months after renovation, Christelle was able to increase the hotel¹s position to 17 in the area. Since October 2012, the property has maintained a position in the top 10 hotels in Miami Beach and has even been ranked the top property in the area.
And it was all thanks to the hard work of Christelle, who used these three tips to push her property to the top on TripAdvisor and who saw the impact on her revenues because of it.
About REVPAR GURU
REVPAR GURU helps hotels to analyze complex data - including historical rates, the rates of competing properties in the same destination, pricing trends and environmental factors - to determine the right rate, at the right time, to secure the highest number of bookings. REVPAR GURU's system calculates room rates up to a year in advance, and continues to update the rates automatically multiple times every day as factors change, across all online channels including OTAs and direct channels.
In short, REVPAR GURU helps hotels to increase their occupancy and their revenues.
Headquartered in Miami, Florida, additional information can be found at www.revparguru.com or by calling +1.786.478.3500.
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