Online

Opinions: 

Travel Tech

Travellers have always used others’ recommendations and reviews during the planning stages of a trip, and now with the proliferation and popularity of online review sites, the scope of this feedback and as a result their impact has multiplied. Global websites such as HolidayCheck, Booking.com and trivago boast tens of millions of reviews for travellers to check, and TripAdvisor, the most popular site, hit 100 million in March 2013, with 50% increase in posted content year on year. (eMarketer)

Who’s Reviewing?

With the number of reviews and their worldwide accessibility, the influence travel sites have is consistently growing. As reported by eMarketer, TripAdvisor’s TripBarometer study found that over half of their 15,000 worldwide respondents had written a review for an accommodation after staying there and around 40% also shared such personal reviews via alternate channels such as social networks or email.

Where are they looking?

Given the wealth of reviews available online, coupled with the risk of fake reviews, travellers look to multiple sites during their research process. PhoCusWright (reported via eMarketer) found that in 2012, around 20% of US travellers used online travel agencies, general search engines and travel-specific review sites during their planning process, and about one third went straight to a hotel website.

Responding to your reviews

While reviews are influential across travel categories, hotel reviews most strongly impact travellers’ booking decisions. A TripAdvisor study found that over half of claimed they would be more likely to book a hotel whose management responded to reviews, compared to one whose management didn’t.

As stated by Flo Lugli, executive vice president of marketing at the Wyndham Hotel Group, “Marketing has gone through evolutions that basically have put consumers in charge, and we need to acknowledge that we’re no longer 100% in charge of our brand message. If marketers crowd source anything, they have to be willing to respond and implement the feedback in some way or form. When consumers are asked for their opinion, their expectation is that something will be done with it.”

With travellers paying a great deal of attention to reviews, and just as highly influenced by managements’ responses to these reviews, it is very important to keep attentive of what is being said about you. Feedback is essential and can transform even negative feedback into an opportunity to display a proactive and positive, helpful service. User-generated content in the form of reviews enables travel organisations to display their service offerings in advance of a traveller’s visit, as an additional tool to convince them during their planning process.

More from #DTTT

  • In June we present:
    Digital Transformation – The Era of Transformative Technologies
    The Era of Transformative Technologies 2022 marks the 10th anniversary of the Digital Tourism Think Tank, which is a decade of supporting and guiding destinations through their transformations towards becoming more competitive in the areas of digitalisation, sustainability, policy development and the adoption of industry trends. Thus, in this quarterly feature, we wanted to highlight [...]
  • In April we present:
    Public Policy & Development – Digitalisation Barriers & Policy Intervention
    Digitalisation Barriers & Policy Intervention In Q1's Policy Feature, we're shining a spotlight on our work with UNITAR (CIFAL) Jeju, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research based in South Korea, with whom we led a global human centred capacity building initiative just this month, focused on digitalisation barriers and policy intervention. Those who [...]
  • In April we present:
    Sustainability & Impact – Linking Sustainability With Design
    Linking Sustainability with Design When thinking of sustainability, are you just talking about it or are you taking action? In this quarter’s Sustainability & Impact Feature, we want to highlight what we are doing at the DTTT, through our projects and initiatives, to be part of the change towards creating a more sustainable future within [...]
  • In April we present:
    Creating a Collaborative Experience with Design Offices
    Creating a Collaborative Experience with Design Offices The world is transforming at a rapid speed, we at DTTT invite you to explore with us the digital transitions in the tourism sector and re-shaping the future trends with XDW 2022. During the event, we’ll be visioneering the challenges faced by the travel sector today, and designing [...]
  • In April we present:
    Discover the XDW Urban Jungle
    Discover the XDW Urban Jungle As we are moving closer to the dates of XDW 2022, we are excited to share with you interesting insights about all the recent developments, so you don’t miss out on any important details of DTTT’s first-ever conceptual event X DESIGN WEEK. Join us to explore and design the meta [...]
  • In April we present:
    X Design Week 2022 – All you need to know!
    X Design Week 2022 - All you need to know! At DTTT, we are thrilled to share with you our excitement for X Design Week 2022, if you haven’t heard about XDW yet here’s a quick read to learn all you need to know about the inaugural conceptual event that explores the unparalleled opportunity to [...]
Show more
© 2020 Digital Tourism Think Tank