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The most important hospitality review portals by country
articles June, 2017
Reviews left by travellers are now a more important element in your digital strategy than ever! They are posted everywhere, at any time of day or night and in various languages. So, how can you find your feet in this vast ocean of content which could be referred to as “Word of Mouth 2.0”?
Let’s take a look at the various different review platforms to achieve a better understanding of the behaviour of your guests when they’re looking for information relating to your activities.
Google, TripAdvisor, HolidayCheck, Weibo…You’ll have realised that what all of these portals have in common lies in the thousands of traveller reviews they generate each day. It’s now vital to be able to tell them apart and know what their differences are in order to better meet the requirements of the consumer communities they represent. It’s also essential for any businesses wishing to attract new markets from outside their borders to know how to communicate on these sites to increase their visibility.
Let’s take a closer look at these sites and try to understand how they work
This site doesn’t need any introduction! It’s the biggest online review portal, with almost 390 million visitors and 500 million reviews posted. Hotels, restaurants, destinations and even airlines… Everything’s gone through with a fine-toothed comb and your guests are sure to consult TripAdvisor at some point when researching your establishment. As a professional, you owe it to yourself to optimise your presence, as this enables you to reach clients on an international scale. Reviews are available in several different languages and you have the possibility to reply to them, thus showing your guests that they can trust you.
It’s vital to be present on Google to attract visitors to your site, but it’s become essential to construct an online reputation there too, just like on the other review platforms. Indeed, Google reviews are on the up, even having surpassed the number of reviews from TripAdvisor in 2017! This notably materialises through Google My Business which provides your potential guests with a huge volume of information, such as your location on a map, your contact details, a price comparison tool and, of course, guest reviews, before they even reach your site. Google reviews are becoming increasingly widespread and are taken more seriously by travellers, so they should be one of your priorities when it comes to your online visibility.
You’ll surely have heard of this platform, which is the most popular with German speakers. It’s also used in eastern Europe, in Poland more specifically. With regard to figures, the site contains 7.6 million reviews and lists around 680,000 hotels. Photos play an important role on the site; there are almost 9 million on there.
It’s also interesting to note that it is used by a relatively equal proportion of people across all age groups (20-29: 20.3%; 30-39: 22.2%; 40-49: 21.8% and over 50: 29.9%). It’s therefore essential to manage your visibility on HolidayCheck if you’re aiming to reach different guest groups.
Lastly, HolidayCheck is a partner for Lufthansa’s loyalty scheme (Miles & More), which is another indication of the weight it carries on the German market.
Like HolidayCheck, Zoover competes with TripAdvisor in the area of guest reviews linked to tourism, but on the Dutch-speaking market. Zoover is extremely influential in the Netherlands and Flanders, with over 3.2 million comments, 400,000 establishments listed and almost 15 million users. It’s true that these figures are far from those that TripAdvisor boasts, but Zoover has nevertheless built up expertise in campsites, places which are often popular with Belgians and the Dutch.
This San Francisco native also plays an important role in the world of guest reviews. Yelp may be best known for dealing with bars and restaurants, but its rapid development has led to it positioning itself in other sectors, such as clothing stores, car garages and even wellness centres… With 127 million reviews posted, it’s used notably on smartphones (68% of searches carried out and almost 73 million visitors from mobile devices).
As a result, Yelp demands your attention if you wish to attract a local clientele as well as people passing through your area.
The king of social networks has also carved out a place for itself amongst the guest review portals. With over a billion users, it offers significant potential for brands and businesses. People also consult social media platforms to get inspiration, often looking for information and photos.
These reviews can be seen on the right-hand side of your page and you can of course respond to each comment. Guests can also rate your establishment, which gives you an average score which is displayed on your home page. Popular and used by all age groups, Facebook is a resource that should be taken seriously when it comes to your visibility, and showcasing your guest reviews will help you to convert visitors to your page.
The top hotel site in Russia! This platform brings together various functions, like a price comparison tool for hotels and recommendations by criteria (family, couple…). Its rating system is comprehensive and detailed, and highly valued by Russians. For some hotel owners, the Russian guest base is very important, so you can gain a certain competitive advantage if you keep an eye on TopHotels. With over 300,000 hotels listed and millions of reviews posted, it is the undeniable leader on the Russian market.
To sum up…
This was just a brief overview of the review portals on which you can focus your efforts. There are others, of course, and new sites are likely to appear as consumer habits evolve. We could have also mentioned Chinese portals. There are a number of important social networking sites such as Weibo which offer just as wide a variety of functions as their American cousins and which count millions of users who are very big fans of online purchasing. Lastly, OTAs should not be forgotten: from Priceline to Expedia via their dozens of affiliates, it can sometimes be difficult not to get lost in the millions of reviews generated each day. To get a detailed overview of all these portals, we’ve created a map listing all the major review platforms, which we invite you to download.
Customer Alliance is aware of the diverse backgrounds of its users and has therefore made sure to provide a multilingual platform for hotel owners from the very beginning. Through our questionnaire that’s available in almost 20 languages, you can collect feedback from all your guests. Lastly, the strategy of publishing reviews, like the sites discussed in this article do, presents a considerable competitive advantage when you’re seeking to optimise your visibility and online reputation.
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