Why you’d be a fool to underestimate the TripAdvisor generation


3 min. read
Published 13 Nov. 2018

An oldie but a goodie – because TripAdvisor is still the first port of call for many holidaymakers.

Love it or hate it, TripAdvisor is the largest travel site in the world. That means it has the potential to make or break your business. To help you keep TripAdvisor’s users on side, we've compiled a list of do's and don't's.

Oh – and here's a great quote from Bill Gates too:
“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”

1. Don't let guests ‘sleep on it’
Don't assume that problems and complications can be dealt with at check-out. Smartphones, iPads and laptops mean that  a 1-star rating is just a click away. Instead get to the root of the problem and deal with things as quickly as possible.

2. Silence might not mean satisfaction
1-star reviewers come in all shapes and sizes. Some might openly tell you that they were dissatisfied with their stay. Others will simply let things simmer until they’re in front of the computer. These are the ones to watch out for. Instead of crossing your fingers and hoping for the best, make a point of asking guests how things are going throughout their stay. That way, any issues surface face-to-face before they’re in a public forum.

3. Be proactive
Europeans are notoriously bad when it comes to complimenting, so you can’t simply expect the 5-stars to roll in. Don't be afraid to ask happy guests to leave a review. Maybe even have a few business cards handy to give them at check out. It can also be a good idea to offer an incentive – such as a 10% discount on their next stay if they leave a review.

4. Don't ignore bad reviews
It’s tempting to sweep negative press under the rug, but all bad reviews should be acknowledged. Regularly check your TripAdvisor page and respond to anything under three stars. Even if you suspect that a review is false or unfair. Be kind and considerate – perhaps suggest that the guest contacts you to follow things up. Even if the customer never sees your response, other visitors to TripAdvisor will.

5. Don't offer refunds online
Although promising a refund on TripAdvisor may satisfy an upset guest or two, it’s also highly likely to tempt future complainers whose problems were forgettable (or even non-existent). Instead apologise, explain what's being done to repair the problem, and invite them to contact you further. Remember, you're not only saying sorry to the guest but to everyone viewing the page. You want them to know that problems are rare – and, when they do occur, they're dealt with quickly.

6. Think positive
Yes, you’ll probably get a few bad reviews here and there. But don’t let them get you down. Instead, focus on the positives. A roll of fantastic reviews on TripAdvisor is just that: fantastic. Anna Evans, owner of Stoneleigh Guest House and a valued Inn Style customer, is the perfect example of someone who uses TripAdvisor to its full potential:

"Stoneleigh Guest House, located in Llandudno, North Wales was winner of 2012 Travellers Choice in Europe and the World on TripAdvisor. We receive a great deal of traffic to our website from TripAdvisor. When I speak to guests and ask how they found us, the majority of them tell me that they saw Stoneleigh on TripAdvisor and that they made their decision to stay here based upon the reviews they read. TripAdvisor also provides lots of marketing tools to promote your establishment which I have found invaluable." Anna Evans, Proprietor.

Summing up
The ever-changing landscape means that TripAdvisor might not always be the force it is now. But at this moment in time, the site is an integral part of the hotel scene – so it's never been more essential to make sure you get the most out of its potential.

New to online booking? Give us a call on 0800 133 7500 to organise a free demo of Inn Style.