A hotel's reputation is crucial to its success as it portrays the experience prospective guests can expect. However, the profound impact and synergistic effects of both positive and negative reputations on revenue are often overlooked in revenue management, despite their significance. This article not only examines the influence of the management response rate but also explains simple and time-saving methods to leverage guest reviews for revenue growth.
Reputation has become an invisible currency in the hospitality industry. It not only determines the demand but also influences the price guests are willing to pay. Research has shown that a hotel with an excellent reputation can charge higher rates than its competitors because the perceived value of the service is more significant. Consequently, this leads to higher average daily rates (ADR) and, thus, higher revenue. In addition, a good reputation status appeals to a broader range of customers, increasing the potential for upselling and cross-selling. Conversely, multiple negative customer reviews can discourage potential guests and significantly impact future revenue.
Effective reputation management builds trust. By maintaining a high hotel management response rate, potential guests develop the impression that their concerns are taken seriously, and the staff is committed to providing excellent services even before their stay. But reputation management is also a suitable tool in post-stay communication to expand customer loyalty or to conduct effective complaint handling. With a few friendly words, any rifts can be smoothed over and previously dissatisfied guests can be won over for future stays.
In addition, the hotel's response rate influences the ranking on the online travel agencies (OTAs). The more reviews the hotel responds to, the higher it is ranked on the various booking platforms. Consequently, the hotel appears more often in search queries, resulting in more bookings and increased revenue.
To leverage reputation as a revenue growth vehicle, hotels need to proactively manage their brand image. This includes monitoring online reviews and social media feedback, promptly addressing issues or negative reviews, and continuously improving service quality. Especially for hotels struggling with staff shortages, this sounds like a time-consuming and resource-intensive task that is nearly impossible to manage.
Hotellistat has taken up the challenge and developed its own reputation module for the brand new generation of its all-in-one revenue and business intelligence solution. A hotel's guest reviews are aggregated and analyzed in real-time from all channels, including Google, Expedia, Tripadvisor, Booking.com, HRS, Holidaycheck, Hotels.com, and others.
Through extensive sentiment analysis, hoteliers get an overview, of how guests perceive the quality of every department and area of the hotel. This automatic sentiment analysis identifies positive, negative, or neutral opinions and moods in the review and highlights them accordingly. It also shows how urgent it is to work on a guest review. This is because machine learning algorithms recognize patterns and immediately highlight pain points. Allowing immediate action to be taken to improve the guest experience. If, for example, the cleanliness of the spa area has been complained about several times, the appraisal can be forwarded to the housekeeping colleagues with the request to pay more attention to it in the future. Aspects highlighted particularly positively by guests, such as an exceptional breakfast, can in turn be used for marketing purposes. "Stay with us and enjoy the best breakfast in town." In fact, not only the hotel's own ratings are analyzed, but also those of its competitors.
Through the analysis of each review, the AI can automatically generate individual responses tailored to the specific point raised in the review, using the preferred language and tone of the house. The system is so advanced that it is impossible to distinguish between system-generated responses and those written by a human.
Moreover, if desired, the AI-created responses can be manually adjusted before being published by Hotellistat on the review portals. This eliminates the need to spend countless hours responding to guest reviews, while still ensuring a perfect management response rate that positively impacts hotel revenue in multiple ways, and immediately detects quality fluctuations in the hotel. As a result, the team has more time to concentrate primarily on direct contact with the guests.
A hotel's reputation has remarkable influences on the revenue of any hotel through its effects on the price perception of potential guests, as a customer loyalty measure, and as a marketing factor. The objective should be to continuously monitor guest feedback, and use it to enhance the guest experience, thereby constantly improving the reputation level of the property and dynamically adjusting room rates accordingly. In a nutshell: Respond, analyze, advertise, adjust your prices, and benefit from your guests' feedback.