Getting Started with TripAdvisor Ranking & Reviews

Saturday, July 5th, 2014

To All Dar Ayniwen Guests:

You have stayed with us and we would like to thank you for choosing us. We hope you had a wonderful stay, which you maybe or maybe not wish to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, Expedia, Booking or TripAdvisor.

In their travel decision-making process, people nowadays rely more than ever on social networks and peer-review sites like TripAdvisor. While they still value friends’ and family’s opinions in the first place, the Internet is where they go to plan their holiday. Thus, ranking highly in our category vs. our competitors can impact positively on our business, not to mention brand awareness.

The beef is that most people who have surfed on TripAdvisor and read our pretty good reviews and rankings, have considered useless to share their experience online. Sorry, but they are mistaken and it is important to explain how the TripAdvisor Popularity Index works. It is based on a complicated algorithm with many variables but three key components, namely the number of reviews (quantity), how favorable reviews are (quality), and how old/recent reviews are (freshness).

1. Quantity

According to a study conducted by TripAdvisor, over 50% of its users said they would not book a property that has no reviews. This is common sense. The more reviews available, the better, especially if there is a variety as per TripAdvisor categories: families, couples, solo and business.

2. Quality

If Dar Ayniwen and a direct competitor have both received 30 reviews over a month, why has their ranking gone up, while ours has stayed the same? Because not all reviews are built equal. Quality refers here to the ratio between positive and negative reviews. Their 20 “5 stars”, five “4 stars” and five “3 stars” reviews have contributed to a higher ranking than our ten “5 stars”, ten “4 stars” and ten “3 stars” reviews, for instance.

3. Freshness

Would you trust a 2012 review of a restaurant, knowing that there may be a new chef in the kitchen? Or perhaps there is this Maldives resort you are considering for your next trip, and which has been spoken highly of by your best friends because they have been there three times, yet you find out on TripAdvisor that the place has just started major renovation works? These are just examples that highlight what is considered the most important variable of all three: freshness.

Reviews depreciate over time so an older review, good or bad, does not weigh in as much as a newer one. It’s not just a simple mathematical average of all ratings. Bad comments do happen, too. In this aspect, many property managers wish they would go away asap, but you can contribute to these comments having less weight by posting more recent good ones, so your feedback is kindly needed!

Any hotel –branded or independent like us– has the power to be highly ranked if they have a great, high-quality product that people want to review. So, while pushing reviews to TripAdvisor will drive up the number of reviews on the site, a hotel still needs to focus on quality for it to pay off. This is what we strive to do on a day-to-day basis.

Thanks for your help and your attention.

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