Atmosphere Research Group, an independent travel industry research firm, in partnership with TripAdvisor, has today released a new report on the correlations between hotel engagement and TripAdvisor performance. The study is based on data from over 12,000 properties located in the top 25 traffic markets on TripAdvisor, as well as interviews with executives from four global hotel chains.
The report analyses TripAdvisor data to determine the relationship between hotelier engagement, review behaviour and property performance on TripAdvisor. The key findings from the research illustrate that highly engaged hotels get more page views, higher popularity rankings and more booking enquiries on TripAdvisor.
Most importantly, the results also point to a ‘virtuous circle’ employed by the most successful hoteliers on TripAdvisor. This ‘virtuous circle’ shows that it’s not just one action, but a series of continual actions of engagement which really make the difference when it comes to property performance on the site, leading to more traffic and increased booking enquiries.
Hoteliers can leverage the report’s key findings to improve their own property’s performance on TripAdvisor:
Key finding #1: Highly Engaged Hotels Perform Better on TripAdvisor
In analyzing TripAdvisor data, Atmosphere found that highly engaged hotels on the site saw:
- More page views: Hotels with higher engagement receive nearly four times more page views on TripAdvisor
- Higher market visibility: The average Popularity Ranking for highly engaged hotels was 63% higher than their non-engaged counterparts. As a result, highly engaged hotels could be seen by two of every three travelers searching that market
- More revenue: The study revealed that highly engaged hotels see 30 to 40% more traveler interaction with revenue-driving products like Business Listings
So what makes a hotel highly engaged? Atmosphere discovered four common actions that these properties take:
- Take ownership of the property’s page on TripAdvisor by registering in the TripAdvisor Management Center
- Publish at least 10 Management Photos to their listing on TripAdvisor
- Respond to at least 25% of reviews on TripAdvisor
- Add direct contact information to the property’s TripAdvisor page with Business Listings
Tip #1: To become more highly engaged on TripAdvisor, properties need to take full advantage of the Management Center.
Tip #2: Properties can take their TripAdvisor listing to next level by adding their property’s contact details, posting Special Offers and more through a Business Listing.
Key finding #2: Successful Hotels Employ a “Virtuous Circle” of Guest Engagement
In addition to hotel engagement, Atmosphere found that the most successful hotels follow a “virtuous circle” approach to engage their guests:
“If you put a focus on getting reviews, you will see the positive results. You need to make it easy for guests to post their reviews.” - Javier Carazo, Senior Vice President, Operations and Quality, NH Hotel Group
- The hotel commits to systematically encouraging reviews from guests after their stays
- Review feedback is constantly monitored and analyzed
- The hotel makes improvements based on those insights
- These improvements lead to more satisfied guests, better reviews, and ultimately more visibility on TripAdvisor
- This enhanced visibility results in more traveler bookings, which causes the cycle to repeat again
Atmosphere found “…when well-planned and executed, the result of this ‘virtuous cycle’ is a hotel highly attuned to its guests’ insights and nimble in its ability to respond and act on feedback as required.”
Tip #3: An important part of the “virtuous circle” is for hotels to ask all guests to write reviews. This ensures properties are getting the full scope of feedback and incorporating it into their business.
Key finding #3: Systematically Encouraging New Guest Reviews Drives Results
As part of the study, Atmosphere analyzed data from properties that used TripAdvisor’s Review Collection Platform (RCP) to systematically request reviews from each guest. The results clearly demonstrate the importance of a programmatic approach:
- More guest reviews: When properties launched a solution like RCP, they saw an increase in reviews of 30 to 80% over pre-launch numbers
- More page views: Highly engaged hotels using RCP saw 40% more page views than highly engaged hotels that did not have a similar solution in place
- Improved revenue-driving performance: These hotels also saw a 25% increase in Business Listings link activity and a 32% increase in CPC clicks, when compared to those that did not use it
Tip #4: While RCP is primarily available to larger hotel chains, TripAdvisor offers a wide range of tools that enable business owners to systematically collect reviews, including Review Express.
Key finding #4: The Importance of Incorporating Reviews into the Booking Process
Atmosphere interviews with key hotel chain executives revealed another benefit to collecting reviews. When review content is published within the hotel’s direct booking channel, they provide travelers with a sense of transparency and credibility.
In fact, when in-line reviews are added to a hotel’s booking site, they can improve “competitive effectiveness against third-party intermediaries, such as online travel agencies, by providing helpful information in the booking path that a traveler can use to determine whether a hotel is right for a particular trip.”
Tip #5: Properties can get more from their reviews by adding TripAdvisor widgets to their property website. More information on widgets is available through the Management Centre.