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5 tips for responding to negative reviews

Even the best properties occasionally get negative reviews. Help protect your online reputation with our tips for responding to unfavorable feedback.

Today’s travelers rely heavily on online reviews to help them select a place to stay. A positive review can help convince travelers to choose your property, while a negative review can send them clicking for another option — all in less than 30 seconds. That’s why effectively managing your online reputation is crucial to attracting new travelers and increasing guest loyalty.

Why bother responding?

A recent study found that 65% of travelers are more likely to book a property that responds to traveler reviews than one that doesn’t.1 Providing a good response to a bad review not only helps repair the relationship with your guest, but also helps limit the impact it has on prospective travelers by showing you care about resolving problems.

To help you soften the effects of a bad review, we’ve put together some helpful tips for how to respond to negative reviews.

1. Be personable and thank the guest
Maintain a positive tone and address the guest by name if possible. Thank guests for taking the time to write a review.

2. Use empathy and apologize
Even if the guest’s concerns are unreasonable or out of your control, you should sympathize with their unmet expectations and offer an apology. Apologizing doesn’t necessarily mean that you are at fault, but it does demonstrate that you are concerned.

3. Don’t get defensive
An unfavorable review may seem like a personal insult but lashing out won’t help. Take a moment before responding. Remember, you’re speaking to everyone who reads this review, including potential guests.

4. Always respond, quickly
We recommend responding within 24 hours. A longer response time may make it seem like you don’t care about the feedback or addressing the issue. It also increases the chances of prospective travelers seeing an unfavorable review without your response. Who knows, you might even be able to turn the guest experience around before your guests depart.

5. Address the issue
Be sure to explain what you have done to avoid a similar situation in the future, so potential guests are reassured that it won’t be a problem for them.

We have the tools to help

Expedia Group has developed a number of tools in Partner Central to help you manage your reviews and help you control your online reputation.

Sign up for Guest Review notifications
Receive periodic notifications when you get a new guest review, so you can provide a prompt response to travelers and thank them for providing feedback.

Respond to complaints in real time
Use Real-time Feedback to respond to private feedback from guests while they are still in-house. Resolving the issue quickly may positively influence your guests’ post-trip guest reviews.

Monitor your property rating
View your property rating by Expedia Group website or by categories like cleanliness, service, and comfort. Identify issues and take action to avoid the problem occurring again.

Sign in to Partner Central to start managing your online reputation.

1Trip Advisor 2015

Tags: Hospitality Marketing, Guest Engagement

LauraRichardsnew
LAURA RICHARDS
CONTENT MARKETING ANALYST

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