Online reviews are the new word of mouth for hotels today. Hoteliers know that a traveller’s buying decision is influenced by many factors online. According to a report by hotel marketing agency, Travel Media Group, (TMG) “the average traveller visits anywhere from four to 38 websites before booking. More importantly, during the booking process, travel review websites and apps account for up to 42% of online sources used, and 89% of travellers say reviews are influential when deciding where to book.”
So, is getting many reviews is a good way to insure bookings for hoteliers? Well, simply receiving reviews is not enough adds the report. “65% of travellers are more likely to book a hotel that responds to online reviews.”
This increase value on engagement is a constant across social media. Although some will stop at sharing content, engaging with customer reviews, good or not, shows that the hotel cares about their guests.
“78% of guests say that managers who respond to reviews care more about their guests. Travellers today are looking for an experience, not just a place to sleep, and travellers believe a hotelier who responds to concerns and praise will likely also provide better service during their stay,” adds the report.