Hospitality Business Magazine

Fifteen hotels in New Zealand scoop gold in awards

rsz_hotelscom_debrettsWe all know the impact a good, or bad, review can have on your hotel.  Last week revealed the winners of its Loved by Guests Awards 2016 – a programme which celebrates hotels with the best review scores from 20 million genuine traveller reviews. Fifteen hotels in New Zealand have been awarded the top honour.

More than 2,700 hotels across 94 countries have been classed as outstanding and awarded the top Loved by Guests gold award, after achieving an average guest review rating of 4.7 or higher (out of 5). The Loved by Guests Awards are based on authentic, trusted reviews left by travellers who have actually stayed in the properties, meaning the hotel guests are the real judges.

Traveller reviews have grown in importance in recent years with more than eight out of 10 travellers now saying they find user reviews important and almost half claiming they won’t book a hotel that doesn’t have reviews.

“Reviews drive consumer perceptions, and positive perceptions result in more bookings.  We encourage our hotel partners to keep customers engaged before, during and after their stay as this can impact whether a guest posts a positive or negative review.  We’re proud to have 15 hotel partners win the award in New Zealand – this is a great accolade,” said Teresa Matheson, Director of Market Management, New Zealand and Pacific Islands for the Expedia group. Loved by Guests winners in New Zealand include The George in Christchurch, The Rees Hotel and Luxury Apartments in Queenstown, Hotel DeBrett in Auckland and The Sails, Nelson.

To help hoteliers engage with guests and manage travel reviews, the Expedia group’s Expedia PartnerCentral (EPC) platform provides partners with an array of easily-accessible tools. EPC Conversations is designed to be an easy to use tool that opens the lines of communication between booked guests and hoteliers via a message centre. Guests can start a conversation by asking a question or submitting a special request at time of booking. Alternatively, the hotelier can reach out directly to the guest. EPC Conversations is currently being released across Australia.

Real-time Feedback provides hoteliers with feedback from travellers in real-time, enabling hoteliers to act on that feedback and potentially avoid a negative hotel review. Shortly after check-in, customers receive an email asking them three short questions about their room, check in and the location of the hotel.    Guests respond through a fun, intuitive interface and their feedback is shared in real-time with the hotelier via an email or app notification and through Expedia PartnerCentral, giving them the opportunity to quickly act upon the feedback provided.

More than 4.1 million responses have been received from guests since Real-time Feedback launched and properties using the tool experience higher post-stay review scores of up to 10 per cent.