Increasingly customers are influenced by review sites such as TripAdvisor, visiting them both before they make a booking and after to leave feedback for others about their experience. Businesses in the tourism and hospitality sectors from hotels, event venues, and tourist attractions to bars and restaurants know all too well the importance of TripAdvisor to the success of their business.... but how many proactively implement a strategy to ensure that visitors adding TripAdvisor reviews are adding favourable feedback detailing an exceptionally good experience of their business? Are you?
If you are serious about marketing your business on TripAdvisor, the following tips may help:
TripAdvisor Best Practice - Online
- Manage your listing – register yourself as the owner of the page, verify ownership, ensure all information fields are populated with the correct information and add photos to maximise the ‘wow’ factor.
- Review and update content regularly.
- Set up email alerts that will notify you that a new comment has been posted, and task an individual or team with checking for new comments daily.
- Respond to all reviews. Never ignore negative feedback! Turn it into a positive experience. Responding to a complaint online is often thought to be more rewarding that never having a complaint at all!
- Be polite and professional, no matter how critical a reviewer may have been!
- Engage in conversations with reviewers – adopt a personal approach, use your own sense of humour and treat people as friends – people like to feel that they are dealing with a real person
- Notify your online TripAdvisor audience when you have implemented one of their suggestions or rectified an issue they’ve raised
- Add TripAdvisor branding on your website
- Create a widget to facilitate easy movement from your website to TripAdvisor to encourage customers to provide feedback
- Add a call to action and hyperlink – Write a Review / Review us on TripAdvisor
- Include an overall TripAdvisor visitor rating on your website
- Include a feed from TripAdvisor to enable website visitors to see positive reviews
TripAdvisor Best Practice – Offline / Venue
- Hire staff with a good personality - positive, smiling, friendly, helpful and honest
- Educate all staff on the importance of TripAdvisor and good customer service at all times
- Take note of the guest or visitor’s name and use it – make them feel important
- Reward staff who continually provide good customer service and those who are positively mentioned in online reviews
- Provide added value packages for customers with extra amenities – perceived value for money can inspire them to write positive reviews
- Actively encourage reviews – distribute TripAdvisor comment cards and flyers with details of where they need to go to in order to provide feedback as a customer leaves
- Send pre-arrival and post-arrival emails to enhance the overall customer experience
- Put processes in place to implement suggestions made by customers, or rectify factors that they have indicated as providing them with a poor experience
- Set targets and work towards them through a process of continual improvement e.g. aim for a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence and aim to be in the top 10% of listings for your area
Benefits of an Effective TripAdvisor Strategy
- Helps build a strong online brand
- Leads to higher rankings on TripAdvisor – Your venue’s ranking is affected by various factors including the number and quality or reviews, review ratings and how recent they are
- Demonstrates good customer service
- Increases occupancy / visitor rates
- Enables hotels and visitor attractions to increase prices
How important is TripAdvisor to your business? What are you doing to maximise favourable feedback from your customers? Add your comments below. We’d love to hear from you!