A new study has found that 77% of hotel guests consult TripAdvisor before booking, while half of the sites users also reference it before before booking a restaurant.
The report conducted by PhoCusWright on behalf of TripAdvisor found that 80% of respondents thought that the site’s reviews aided their choices.
Of the 12,000 travellers surveyed, 77% said they usually or always referenced TripAdvisor before selecting a hotel. Half said they usually or always checked the site before selecting a restaurant.
Some 53% said they wouldn’t book a hotel that didn’t have reviews, with the majority reading between 6-12 before making a decision. Most said they focused on recent reviews.
According to the report, travellers are likely to be influenced by traveller-submitted photos and generally ignore extreme comments.
Barbara Messing, chief marketing officer at TripAdvisor, said: “The results of this study showcase the vital part reviews play, reinforce the idea that we are becoming more social as travellers and demonstrate the essential nature of reviews to hospitality businesses. Not only are travellers referencing reviews before they book, they are clearly more highly engaged by businesses that respond to reviews.”
She added that travellers wanted to see pictures and tend to book properties that have lots of accolades.
Messing continued: “The results underpin the need for business owners to not only monitor their online reputation, but to engage as much as possible with their past and potential customers. The benefits are clear – the more engaged the property, the more likely travellers are to book.”
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