Potential guests will always be attempt to research your hotel before they ultimately decide to choose you. They will go online searching for reviews, analyzing both the positive and the negative ones. Those reviews can determine whether the customer chooses your business or one of your competitors. Even if you try your best, sometimes you can’t avoid those negative online reviews. Somewhere along the lines, something went wrong and you were not able to address it in the moment. A negative review can linger, influencing those potential customers researching online and deferring them away from your business. You can’t allow comments to saturate online. Today we will examine why you should be addressing negative online reviews and how a Niagara mystery shopper can help you prevent future ones.
Sometimes complaints are only made online
It’s been said that for every one complaint you hear, there are four more who have said nothing. Some of your guests may feel more comfortable expressing their concerns anonymously- which means you may not have the opportunity to correct the problem before they venture online. You can’t afford to ignore any negative comments, whether it’s online or in a comment card. You need a strategy to maintain your hotel’s online presence, from interacting with potential guests on social media to responding to positive and negative comments. It’s going to be hard, but negative comments should be addressed and responded publicly.
Online reviews are influencing your customers
As a business owner or manager in the hospitality sector, it can be difficult to receive negative reviews about your hotel. Your first reaction may be to get angry and defensive, to completely undermine the comment; thinking that you’ll get the upper hand back. Be forewarned: a negative review may loose you business, but so could a nasty response.
A 2012 report, by TripAdvisor and PhoCusWright, stated that “84% of users agree that an appropriate management response to a bad review “improves my impression of the hotel.” The tone of your response can also influence potential customers. In the same report is was shown that “64% of [TripAdvisor users] agree that an aggressive/defensive management response to a bad review “makes me less likely to book that hotel”. Prospective guests are looking at those negative reviews as well, often times viewing them as more valid than all the positive ones. When you effectively respond, it gives you the opportunity to defuse the situation and turn that viewer back into a potential guest.
The step to take after receiving a bad review
You’ve seen the review, you’ve responded in a timely fashion. The problem was either sorted out and you gained yourself a repeat guest, or there was unfortunately no solution, but potential guests will no longer zero in on this particular review. Would you consider the problem over now? Following a negative review you need to determine: Is the issue a one time occurrence or a recurring problem? It may be easy for the staff of your hotel to overlook issues that may become problems to guests. Braymark’s Niagara mystery shopping program allows you to see through your customer’s eyes to determine what is and isn’t working for your hotel. Download our free ebook today to learn more!