How to Ask for Online Reviews from Guests
Every hotelier knows that online reviews are the best way to bring more attention to your hotel and earn valuable bookings. Reviews serve as reliable firsthand experiences to curious guests wanting to learn more about what a stay at your property might look like. Guests trust in these sources to guide their impression of a hotel, especially when in the absence of recommendations from trusted friends and family. In fact, in situations where personal recommendation is unavailable, guests are even more likely to believe and trust online reviews – the more recent, the better.
However, sometimes it can be difficult for hoteliers to earn more reviews organically. Not every guest will feel compelled to leave an account of their experience online, so what can hoteliers do to ask guests to leave a review? There are a few creative solutions that will help you boost your online reputation.
Develop Creative Incentives
It may seem difficult at first to ask outright for a guest to leave a review of their stay, but incentives encourage guests to post their comments. For example, every individual that leaves a review may be entered for a chance to win a free night’s stay at your property. Or, each reviewer may receive a coupon for 10% off a purchase within the hotel, such as room service, souvenirs, or for use at an on-site restaurant.
A good incentive to leave a review doesn’t have to be something quantifiable, either: it also means making the process simple for the guest to follow. The easier it is to select a rating and write a review, the more likely guests are to do it. Communication sent to guests with a request to leave a review, such as text or email, should include mention of how long it will take. For example: “This should only take 2 minutes of your time.”
Find the Right Timing
Timing is everything with making a request to your guest, and there are multiple opportunities along the guest’s journey to ask how they’re doing. You can start the conversation by using open-ended questions such as “How are you enjoying your stay?” or “How was your check-in experience?” However, if you’re unable to ask your guest face to face, you can always implement a text or email-based system that will ask the guest to provide feedback.
Other moments when you can ask include:
- After they experience success with your accommodations or service
- When they re-book, say they would like to stay again, or extend their stay
- After they tag your brand in a post on social media
- If they refer another traveler to the hotel
Finding the best moment to ask for feedback from your guests can be the key for earning more organic positive reviews. If it doesn’t feel right based on the customer’s demeanor during their stay, you can always solicit their feedback later through a post-stay email campaign.
Get Your Staff Involved
It’s possible that throughout a guest’s stay, your staff may interact with your guests more than you. They’ll have more opportunities to check in with guests and see how their stay is coming along, so you’ll want to train them to ask guests for reviews after successful service. If the guest feels satisfied, an employee can respond with: “Would you consider leaving a review of us online? It will only take a few minutes.”
Over the course of a guest’s stay at your hotel, your staff must also foster a relationship with happy guests. This may be more difficult while social distancing, but even little touches like notes on receipts or personalized text messages will help guests warm up to your staff, making the invitation to leave a review easier to receive.
In the end, one of the most tried and true methods of earning more organic reviews is through sending post-stay emails. Ramping up your email marketing and including review links after check-out or on thank-you pages will drive more guests to share their thoughts about their stay with you. Our team at Travel Media Group is uniquely equipped to help you manage your reputation and foster long-lasting positive relationships with your guests. Review our services and get in touch with us today.