Top tips for hotels when responding to reviews on TripAdvisor

NB: This is a guest post by Brian Payea, head of industry relations at TripAdvisor.

Review sites and other social media have become essential tools for many travelers who are increasingly using them to share their customer experiences online.

While the average rating on TripAdvisor is positive (just under four on a scale from one to five), as with other sites, opinions can range from glowing reviews to less-than-favorable accounts.

Should hoteliers and other business owners respond to these comments: the good, the bad and the ugly?

The unequivocal answer is yes, and your brand’s engagement can make all the difference in how your customers perceive your business.

According to marketing firm Cone’s 2009 Cone Consumer New Media Study, 89%of the new media users surveyed believe businesses should use new media to interact with consumers, and 74% said that they have a more positive image of those that have a presence in new media.

The takeaway is that the vast majority of your customers will expect you to have a presence online, and they will have a better overall impression of your business if you demonstrate that you are listening and taking their comments to heart.

This interaction not only helps you maintain a positive reputation, but it also cultivates long-term brand loyalists and shows potential customers that you are actively involved.

How can you make the best impact with online engagement? Many review sites like TripAdvisor allow the management of businesses to respond to reviews.


The following are a few tips that have worked well for many of our partners:

1. Respond quickly.

A timely response is expected and appreciated. It shows you are attentive and receptive to feedback, and it leaves a lasting impression. Also, the more quickly you respond, the greater the number of people who read your comments.

2. Keep the tone professional, whatever the concern.

Whether the review is critical or glowing, your reply should always be polite and professional, just as you would handle any other customer service reply.

It can be tempting to respond harshly to criticism, but it is best not to lose sight of the fact that your audience is hundreds, if not thousands of potential customers, as well as the individual reviewer.

The vast majority of people recognize that not all customers raise reasonable concerns, and not everything will always be perfect.

They will give you a lot of credit for offering a courteous and thoughtful explanation, especially when the criticism is unwarranted. This is your chance to set the record straight.

3. Avoid jargon.

Don’t be tempted into using online jargon. The use of ALL CAPS, HTML tags or excessive typographic symbols, can appear abrasive or result in miscommunication.

4. Highlight positive changes and updates.

Use the opportunity to communicate new improvements you’ve made to your business. If you’ve addressed a situation that has generated comments from customers, it’s important to state that you’ve taken their feedback seriously and made positive changes.

5. Be careful of individual privacy.

Your responses should never contain the personal information of any person, including names, addresses, phone numbers or other information that may be used to identify an individual.

6. Be original.

Customers don’t respond well to stock answers. They appreciate an individually tailored response, because they will realize that you are addressing their particular situation.

It is tempting to post material from other sources that support your point of view, but customers prefer direct and unique comments from you. It’s especially important to avoid posting correspondence from another guest.

7. Show gratitude.

Gratitude builds goodwill. Management responses are great opportunities to tell guests and customers that you are thankful for their positive comments, as well as their constructive feedback.

Don’t hesitate to let people know you appreciate them. It goes a long way.


Following these steps can help you maintain a positive reputation online. Remember that, while you may be responding to one reviewer, thousands of others may read your comments and form opinions about you and your brand.

Make sure they know you run a respectful, attentive and thoughtful business.

Your customers will appreciate your interest.

NB: This is a guest post by Brian Payea, head of industry relations at TripAdvisor.

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About the Writer :: Viewpoints

A founding principle of tnooz was a diversity of viewpoints from across the spectrum. Viewpoints are articles by guest contributors from around the travel and hospitality industries. The views expressed are those of the author. and do not necessarily reflect those of the author's employer, or tnooz and its partners.



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  1. Rupert Wilson

    Dear Brian. Why is it, that when I complain to TripAdvisor, right up to the ‘contentintegrity’ team, complain that a review has racist overtones, involves a very personal and nasty attack on a specific non-European member of staff, and breaches your review guidelines in several ways, that I cannot get a sensible response? I need to be able to discuss the matter with a senior team, ideally on the telephone.. But it seems that none of your staff really understand your review guidelines nor the law regarding racism. I have spoken to several TripAdvisor staff, who were all very nice, and they recognised the racist/personally nasty aspect, and how this was in conflict with your review guidelines, when I explained it to them, sadly none of them had the power to do anything.. And the team that handle such matters is not responding, except once to say that ‘the review complied with our guidelines’ and a 2nd auto-reply. This situation is a demonstration of incompetence at best, and if the review were not somewhat racist, I might be tempted to let it drop, but that would not be right for our business, for the member of staff, nor for other business similarly adversely affected by TRipAdvisor not operating with integrity and responsibility.
    Can you get in touch via tnooz?

  2. Geoff

    I am over self centred people who do not tell you face to face of their criticisms, they remind me of skulkers who talk about you behind your back, maybe I am old fashioned but the vast majority of service providers I have come across in my 70 years do what they can to provide a good experience for their customers, no one in business who is in it for the long term is idiot enough to rip off customers and stay in business
    We are in the service industry and we bend over backwards to make the experience of our customers exceptional but when I get totally incorrect untrue statements made on sites like Tripadviser (thankfully very few) it is not fair and in fact it is slanderous. I know momentum is growing throughout the service industry to challenge these sites- valid criticism is acceptable slander is not.
    Recently I had comments made that were totally untrue I contacted Tripadviser and their answer was that people can write what they like, true or untrue as long as they do not use profanities, Well to me the archilies heel has just been exposed, I am now gearing up with my lawyers to challenge the person making the statement in court -the weakest link and will put a proposal on cloud funding and other web sites to raise monies to take action against individuals who think that they can use social media to unfairly attack reputable businesses by making untrue or exadurated statements that ultimately cause damage to our valuable asset
    Surely this is the issue, forget the bullshitt of people who want to pacify the world with a smiling face with nice responses when criticism is unwarrented, the reality is that far too many of us are getting the short end of the stick

    • Bela Wood

      This is exactly why people are move as fast as they can to airbnb – you get to rate the guests and nobody can make false claims of having been at your establishment – TripAdvisor makes no efforts to even verify anything. They’re just an overgrown money machine that will go the way of Myspace. They want a $1,000 USD from me to click through for my four-room establishment.

  3. andy

    For all the Tripadvisor lovers and those who think there is not a problem then why do you think the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority. instructed Tripadvisor back in 2012 to stop using the words REVIEWS YOU CASN TRUST simply because how can you trust unverified reviews.
    Anyone with an e-mail address can review a hotel if they have stayed there or not.

  4. KentEnglander

    I have been writing reviews on trip advisor for some years now and do make a point of doing so whenever I stay in a hotel or visit a restaurant or attraction. I do feel that hoteliers that have criticised trip advisor inthis and other bloggs have missed the real point of why trip advisors popularity has grown. When people are investing their hard earned cash on a holiday for which they have saved hard all year, they want to ensure as far as reasonably practicable that their chosen hotel is going to deliver a quality service as described in their glossy ads. The same applies to restaurants and attractions. They want to know what to expect both good and bad so that they can make their purchase choices with the knowledge of what they are likely to receive. Hoteliers seem to have forgotten their industries history of a time pre trip advisor when ads for hotels were found to be creative (putting it politely). Let us not forget the classic spanish hotel next door to a building site scenario from the 70’s. Colleagues, how many holidays have been blighted in the past by the discovery that your hotel is a fleapit and nothing like the glossy ad that they read when they booked and paid for it. The comments do not reflect on the bulk of honest hoteliers but you know that there has and will be those who are less scrupulous in their business dealings. What trip advisor provides is the facility to enable good hotels to shine and prosper on the basis of well deserved guest reviews and the unscrupulous or less customer focused to be exposed and avoided. From a customers perspective it can only be a good thing. Yes, I accept that you can get mean minded and unscrupulous customers, but, they are a small minority. WhenI book hotels I look for hotels with extensive reviews and would be more careful of hotels where there is no established review history. The bottom line is that hotel review sites are here to stay so embrace them, utilise the good advice offered such as is given on this blogg site and maintain good standards with the expectancy of receiving customer endorsment vie the reviews they give.

    • Berynice

      I think we all know this. Our complaint is that we don’t get to rate customers – which we would all love. I would have liked a heads up on the (few) dreadful guests we’ve had. Airbnb does have this and we love it. On TripAdvisor the reviewer has all the rights to totally make stuff up and the hotelier is stuck with a very limited ability to reply.

      • Berynice

        I agree. It’s one reason airbnb will be growing and Trip Advisor failing.

    • Tom

      Be that as it may, Kent Englander, but the presenting problem is that Trip Advisor has no easy way for hospitality properties to dispute unfair or dishonest reviews about their properties.

      Even if you sign up for their vaunted “business listing,” the fact is that TA is all about the reviews and not about the honesty or accuracy of those reviews. In that instance, TA takes your money, then continues to permit people to slander your property.

      TA has gotten into a lot of trouble in countries with more robust libel and slander laws than the US (I’m thinking the UK here).

      • Berynice

        Thanks Tom. Well said.

      • Anne

        KentEnglander is absolutely correct. Whilst I can appreciate that some people ( a very tiny minority ) are trying to mis-use and manipulate Tripadvisor, it is clear that this applies to both “guests” and “landlords”. I’m an avid user & a fair reviewer ( around 180 at last count ). As such, I believe I can usually spot the malicious, unwarranted reviews as well as the glowing epitaphs written by hoteliers to boost the ratings of their own businesses. This particular cookie crumbles both ways it seems. No longer can hoteliers, landlords and restauranteurs fleece people by providing sub-standard services and that HAS to be a good thing. Anyone with an ounce of common sense can tell when a business is being targeted by a competitor or someone who’s being unreasonable. Those on the receiving end of such reviews are given ample opportunity to set the record straight (indeed I’ve noticed some Management Responses are two or three times the length of the review). Sadly, some people do more damage to their businesses by the content of their responses than anything the original review might have caused……

        • Tim

          Unfortunately Tripadvisor is slowly but surely moving away from it’s original ethos and turning itself into a huge online Travel Service and using it’s reviewers to assist in that goal. If you are a small unit with a few rooms and no wish to list yourself with them your property will no longer show on the top listing on the page for that town even if you have the best reviews.
          In addition to which Tripadvisor break their own rules when arbitrating between a property and a reviewer. We have been the subject of a vendetta by one person, not even a client who tried to book with us didn’t get the response they wanted and so wrote a review full of half truths and outright untruths. Tripadvisor’s policy states “We accept reviews that detail first-hand experiences with the facilities or services of an establishment. General discussion that does not detail a substantial experience will not be posted.” and yet they still refused to take down the review even though the person had not even stayed with us.
          It is about time such disputes were overseen by an ombudsman and not by Tripadvisor itself.

        • andy

          Anne, can you really point out both fake guest and property owner reviews?? believe me there are much more on both sides than a TINY amount trust me I’m an owner and follow the daily comments in the management section of Tripadvisor of genuine owners pointing out the obvious and often reviews that most clearly break Tripadvisors LOOSE guidelines.

  5. Skantb

    We have had people writing reviews who have their locations overseas and yet for the time of travel that they mention, we have not had any foreigner staying with us. Most negative reviews in my experience are blackmail reviews or reviews posted by competitors. I mean, there is a strict documentation that is to be followed when a person of foreign origin stays with us and yet while we do not have any record of any foreigner staying with us someone posts a review from some country using proxies.
    The fact is that TA cannot verify any reviews if they are from genuine visitors to a guest and that they actually do want more and more negative reviews to come in.
    Further now that TA has started business listing and paid listing from hotels, it wont be surprising that they fudge reviews to promote hotels that pay them and lower ranking of hotels that dont. We have seen that many of our good reviews are removed after a couple of months to keep a check on our ranking and the internet does say that there are many hotels who have observed this and TA says that it is a glitch in their system. Well Dear TA, why does your glitch remove only the good reviews and not the bad ones? Let me guess, its because we told your sales rep to F*** Off when he called us to buy a premium listing with TA.

  6. steve knox

    Commenting on the credibility (or lack of credibility)
    regarding TA reviews lately – whilst it may be the case that many criticisms have not been thought out properly, I suspect that tour operators etc are employing people to submit glowing reports which are also undeserved – next mis-selling scandal??

    • andy

      The problem with Tripadvisor can be summed in 2 words


    • Bela Wood

      I’ve had email offers to up my ratings on TripAdvisor!

  7. James

    As a Hotelier, I understand mostly the bad reviews exist because guests want to pay for 2 star hotel price upon check-in and wants to get a 5 star treatment. And other bad reviews come from simply guest having a bad day on their own, lack of knowledge about a brand standards, dislike about the staff’s race and so forth. Where is a feedback opportunity for Hotel owners when guest lies about the number of people in their company along with their pets when they check in, when guests damage a property, steal stuff (especially towels and more), smoke in a non smoking rooms and on and on. A local police is no help to anywhere in US against a theft or a damages for a hotel rooms or even a non payment for that matter even though you have a copy of a driver’s license. I wonder where does TripAdvisor stand on educating guest and these issues?

  8. LaylaRouge

    A few months has passed since comments have been made upon this subject and it is important I think to keep the dialogue flowing.

    Trip advisor is great when the reviews are good and terrible when the reviews are bad.

    We have a backpackers hostel in Morocco which has mainly excellent reviews save for a few really nasty, vindictive ones. In terms of trying to respond to these we are met with many flaky barriers regarding the ‘rules’ we have to adhere to that guests don’t have to. This is the issue.

    Please could trip advisor respond directly – Why can a guest write (and we know it is)clearly LIBELLOUS misinformation which is in effect a personal attack on staff or owner, and yet the hostel cannot respond with a name – conveniently the guest can hide behind a bizarre euphemism instead.

    The balance of ‘freedom of speech’ is skewed. Properties should have the right to respond to untruths and vicious personal attacks. It is a shame that trip advisor condone misuse of their website and clearly very carefully put together system (what with its algorithms and all). Personal attack is not appropriate for a travel website – it is missing the point that potential guests will know it is an anomoly, as it is about defaming the character of a HUMAN BEING based on nothing but vitriol and mean-spirit.

    The recent documentary about trip advisor whilst using only extreme cases for dramatic effect, did give an insight into the sort of people who take it upon themselves to be hotel inspectors and as such cause all sort of problems for properties as they arrive looking for things to write about. It is not a mentality we understand or wish to understand. When guests use trip advisor as a means of blackmail (and most lodgings will unfortunately have experience of this), trip advisor needs to LISTEN to the property and not give carte blanche to these people to ruin family businesses.

    Everyone works – ultimately we all want to save for our children and given them a happy, healthy life and trip advisor is serving to break people and their businesses.

    Your algorithms are deeply unimportant – stand up for your accommodation against unreasonable people. We are all human – not a series of HTML codes.

    Many thanks for your time and we hope this discussion can be continues to see how best to resolve the unfairness of trip advisor’s current system.

    • Gupta

      We have noticed on TripAdvisor that reviews for some new properties by one time reviewers are bringing such new properties up in rankings even though the reviews are not 100% genuine as the scoring system of TripAdvisor gives more weight to new reviews then old ones.

      Hence, the older properties drops down the ranking as new properties get coming up based on new reviews even written by one time reviewers. The effect is that the travellers start booking the new properties over old properties based on new properties higher rankings and i think it is not the correct way to judge or give ranking to a property. A property who has established and in business for long must be given more weight over fresh and new properties which are yet to prove themselves.

      Secondly, even if a one bad or average review can bring the old property further down the ranking even if the older property has more then 95% excellent reviews which are much more in volume then all the reviews of numerous new properties put together.

      Our property is facing such a problem on TA even though the average or bad review counts are less then 3% out of the total reviews, mostly written by people who wanted to blackmail the owner or want to settle their personal grudge. We had responded to all the negative reviews timely, but we found that our management replies are unable to sound nice defending negative reviews, so we have asked the tripadvisor to remove ALL our management replies from their site, as there is no point responding to all negative reviews when you have 95% excellent reviews. Because the attitude of TA is pro negative reviewers and anti property owners. So let them try to give more credibility to their site before owners start posting a management response, as TA does not worth a management response, under their present setup and policies.

  9. Off the Pass: week of October 4, 2010 |

    […] dat, dealing with comments online is something all businesses need to get clued up on, so here are 7 good tips for hotels responding to reviews on TripAdvisor from Tnooz, the blog about tech in […]

  10. Roberto Sanchez

    The words of Mr. Brian Payea are very diplomatic and helpful , however what is one supposed to say when a review is a fake and an obvious attempt to discredit the place. Like what would he answer to a comment like this:? “…there is a taqueria in front of the B & B that stinks up the property”. The taqueria does not exit in front of the place.

  11. SEO

    I am curious what your advice is to a business owner when the reviews are hateful or literally made up. I have seen numerous reviews that could potentially be posted by competitors or just bad people who are trying to harm a business and help their own. How do you recommend business owners comment on that?

  12. knev

    Some hotel treat visitors looking at which country they belong to and how many days they stay.
    If you are booking for longer days, hospitality and prices will be different

  13. JASON

    tripadvisor is just like our government..they act they helping us but they are nothing but money hungry S.O.Bs

  14. hari

    I really don’t know how to react this kind of issues
    Because heavy lighting and thunderstorms our cable TV got disconnected yesterday evening and never came back in the whole night. So morning one of the guest who came to c/out because of this issue said he only pay 50% of the rent(he was staying one of the expensive cottage) because he didn’t have any channels in the TV. Apart from the TV he had all the facilities as promised by us. We tried our maximum to convince him and we offered 20% (to make him happy) as discount on the rent. He was not satisfied and stood for 50% only. At last he said if you don’t give I will write a bad review in trip advisor which is shocking for us. We really relay on trip advisor and he knew very well about our reputation in trip advisor.In this situations what shall we do? For getting big discount the guest really threatening us in the name of trip advisor. So we told him if you wanted to write we cannot stop you from writing. So do whatever you like. He got the 20% discount and God only knows what he will do next. He may write also but it will not be genuine review and trip advisor also without knowing anything will post it in the net. So this kind of situations how do you want us to react trip advisor? Even we can write a management response but who will get benefited? he anyway never care for the management response. He wanted to damage the reputation of the hotel and he may succeed also. So what is your advice in this issue Mr.Carter ! ?
    How are you goin to stop these kind of referral ?

    • hari

      trip advisor has no answer for my question till sad..
      even after 4 months. it is ridiculous!

    • Margaret

      We had an issue where a guests threatened to “get at us on the internet” We said go ahead and do what you want but we will respond to explain what you said.
      He wrote a bad review but his review actually showed people that he was being malicious and unreasonable (as your guest would show himself to be – 50% reduction just because the T.V was not working – rubbish!!!) . Readers are not stupid. They realise when someone is being unreasonable. We also put in a response explaining the true circumstances. On the negative side, it dropped our percentage for a few months but now we are back up at the top, No 1 for our area. The bad review did not prevent anyone from booking with us. Guests told us that they could “see through” the bad review
      It is important not to give in to these horrible people. They threaten because they know that they could be successfult in getting what they want, so do not give in. Just put in a response clearly explaining the true circumstances … and a 20% discount was extremely reasonable,.
      I agree that trip Advisor is not truly on the side of the provider. They seem to want only sensationalism. I do not think that they are fair and yet we accommodation providers are the means of an income for them through advertising. They do not even treat their destination experts, who work for nothing, well..

  15. HARI

    I really don’t know how to react this kind of issues!?
    Because of heavy lighting and thunderstorms our cable TV got disconnected yesterday evening and never came back in the whole night. So morning one of the guest who came to c/out because of this issue said he only pay 50% of the rent(he was staying one of the expensive cottage) because he didn’t have any channels in the TV. Apart from the TV he had all the facilities as promised by us. We tried our maximum to convince him and we offered 20% (to make him happy) as discount on the rent. He was not satisfied and stood for 50% only. At last he said if you don’t give I will write a bad review in trip advisor which is shocking for us. We really relay on trip advisor and he knew very well about our reputation in trip advisor.In this situations what shall we do? For getting big discount the guest really threatening us in the name of trip advisor. So we told him if you wanted to write we cannot stop you from writing. So do whatever you like. He got the 20% discount and God only knows what he will do next. He may write also but it will not be genuine review and trip advisor also without knowing anything will post it in the net. So this kind of situations how do you want us to react trip advisor? Even we can write a management response but who will get benefited? he anyway never care for the management response. He wanted to damage the reputation of the hotel and he may succeed also. So what is your advice in this issue Mr.Carter ! ?
    How are you goin to stop these kind of referrals ?

  16. Paul

    Wake up folks … the TA business model needs reviewers to leave negative reviews. They LIKE them! That’s why they don’t remove them!

    We were alerted to two negative reviews, one of which was blatant, unfounded slander and libel. TA refused to remove it. Consequently, we were forced to ask all our customers to review us on TA in order to redress the balance.

    Then it dawned on us ….. in TA’s eyes, negative reviews are good for business; it forces owners to aggressively recommend TA to their customers.

    It’s a dirty trick, but it’s actually quite brilliant. If you’re listening TA, it’s a very clever scam, but it’s not cool. I have amended my Christmas card list accordingly. Naughty.

    • Tom

      In a way, I feel sorry for Brian Payea. Clearly he wasn’t expecting the sort of feedback he received from his article.

      But since his title is “Head of Industry Relations” for TA, then the sorts of comments and criticism he has received here certainly shouldn’t surprise him. This is not the first time TA has received this sort of criticism.

      And, since TA does not welcome criticism on its “owners pages” as owners have reported on this thread, it seems clear that being a friend of the B&B industry is not high on TA’s lists of Core Values.

      The irony is that TA wants our money, but is unwilling to establish a clear and fair process for innkeepers to challenge an unfair comment.

      Now, if TA didn’t want our money–in fact, was unwilling to accept any money from innkeepers, then the issue wouldn’t be so inflammatory. But we all know that TA does want our money–as much of our money as it can extract from us–to get us to pay for doubtfully valuable links from its site to our own.

      However, as many have pointed out, TA doesn’t have any plans to change its basic marketing model of freewheeling reviews with little or any moderation of the comments they contain.

      Kevin Carter’s repeated references to TA’s policies when questions have been raised, along with his unwillingness to engage actively with the points raised by posters is symptomatic of a company that knows they have their audience over a barrel. And the fact that the author (Brian) of this article always seems to be traveling and hence a lackey has been deputized to reply with the company line speaks volumes.

      Let’s face it. TA is not our friend, and it never will be our friend. Innkeepers’ strategies are clear: minimize our interactions with the website. God bless the travelers who praise us and minimize the impact of negative posts through strategies a lot more robust than the ones Brian came up with.

      I doubt that TA will ever be responsive to complaints about the libel against inns it routinely posts on its website–until it gets sued enough times, perhaps. The bottom line: Trip Advisor is not our friend, and its business model implicitly hopes that we will make big enough mistakes that travelers will damn us in one of its reviews.

      Trip Advisor is to travel as Jerry Springer is to TV.

  17. Leonard Clarke

    Why do you publish reviews of people who have never set foot on the property? They may be upset that they called a wrong number and instead of getting a 5 minute hotel message got some blow off?

    Hotels should be able to challenge reviews. Proof that somebody actually stayed there and that is it not a grudge from a dismissed employee or from somebody you didn’t want as a guest e.g. wanting to smoke in a room, wanting 5 people in a room, wanting to check in a bit early ? 2:00 a.m.

    I have read through many reviews, at many locations, they often come down to money …..

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  20. Tom

    Hey, Brian Payea and Kevin Carter:

    Looks like you are disobeying the #1 advice in Brian’s article: to respond promptly to negative criticism. TA provides a forum for people to post negative, malicious and inaccurate information about properties, and your advice is to “respond promptly.”

    Yet when people have posted negative things about Trip Advisor in this forum, you remain silent. The last time a TA person posted here was September 30.

    Nice going in responding promptly, boys. I guess, like so many patronizing advice columns, your bottom line is “do as I say; not as I do.”

    You boys have lost all credibility.

    • Kevin Carter

      Hi Tom,

      Thanks for your comment. We are pleased that this article has continued to generate so much conversation. We monitored comments and weighed in through the end of October, but clearly folks are continuing to comment and ask questions many weeks later. We’ll address some of the recent comments and keep an eye on new ones. We encourage owners with property-specific questions to raise them through our Owners Center ( – it’s the most efficient way to get them resolved.

      Kevin Carter

      • Andrew

        Hi Kevin

        Hope you or someone can answer my following questions

        Do Tripadvisor not understand why so many hoteliers are turning to companies like Kwikchex in utter frustration after being accused of such things like steeling, racism and assault do you honestly believe that hoteliers would contact you often in desperation over such accusations to only be told by Tripadvisor staff that these accusations are within your guidelines.

        Why in your management forums when Tripadvisor is criticised do you feel the need to delete the posting?

        Once again for 2010 you have compiled a list of Britain’s Dirtiest Hotels, what gives you the right to produce such a thing which are related to reviews you have no idea are truthful or not? why do you feel the need to serialise such a thing? furthermore who gives you the right? Tripadvisor is supposed to be a user generated website not a place to serialise tickle tackle- answers would be grateful.

        • Kevin Carter

          Hi Andrew,

          Thanks for your comment. We invite owners to use our owners’ forum as a tool for discussion about a wide range of topics. Users are only blocked if they fail to comply with our policies. A detailed overview is available on the site:

          The hotel lists and awards programs are based on traveler ratings and reviews, and thus determined by user-generated content.

          Kevin Carter

          • Andrew


            Shocked by your arrogance, I am a business owner and use the owners forum alot,the slightest criticism to wards Tripadvisor and you remove the post,example
            If I was to post the following link which demonstrates how bad and dangerous tripadvisor as become you would removes it immediately unfortunately you will not be able to do this here. please read the following


            So as the article states after alot of press coverage you removed the offending article which clearly was libellous and by making an accusation of racism was inciting racial hatred which contravenes UK law

            What changed Kevin why did you removes the article that you originally refused to do so-a detailed response would very much be appreciated

  21. Elsa

    I am wondering if you realy read the comments from hoteliers about bad comments that are repeated and always palced on top of reviews.
    we had confirmation from several clients that they did write comments but never published can you clarify?

    • Kevin Carter

      Hi Elsa,

      Yes. We do review management responses from hoteliers and they are posted as long as they are in accordance with our policies. A list of our policies is available on the site.

      Does this answer your question?

      Kevin Carter

  22. Jaco

    On the subject of older hotel reviews, the TA representative says that the user can see the more recent hotel reviews first and will thus weigh them more highly. I think TA sort of agrees that newer hotel reviews should count more, and eventually TA will contain a distant past. The question is, how long will TA wait to weight the average score by which they determine the very important TA hotel ranking based on the age of the review? Eventually, 50 years from now, TA can’t possibly count 50 year old reviews as much as todays right? So isn’t it time to count the 5 year old reviews of today at 20% less weight than more recent reviews in determining a hotel’s composite score and position?

  23. Chris

    Our hotel in Jaco has found Tripadvisor to be responsive, albeit opaque in their processes, in cases where we have had bogus hotel reviews by people who did not stay at the hotel. In other cases, we had people who did stay at our Jaco hotel but were removed for having made friends with the owner during their stay! Overall, it seems they are vigilant and its a difficult task. It can’t be perfect, and it seems they put more effort into verifying hotel reviews in Jaco Costa Rica than the other sources of information.

    Great tips! We always respond quickly and carefully to negative reviews, thanking the reviewer for their criticsm and citing a policy change to avoid repeat problems. Reputation management is a key part of the success of our Jaco hotel.

  24. Craig

    I work for a Hotel at Heathrow, we are classed as being in hayes, other hotels at heathrow are classed as being in houslow & west Drayton, 3 separate towns.

    I believe it would be prudent to have all Heathrow Hotels together.

    If you type in hotels at heathrow airport, our hotel plus others on the main strip are not listed.

    Our competitors in terms of the business traveller are not even on the same lists, so it does not really give a accurate reflection of which Heathrow Airport Hotel is best, service wise.

    Is there anything that can be done?


  25. TripAdvisor slaps Red Badge on hotel for writing own reviews | Tnooz

    […] A debate is also currently raging as to the best methods for responding to reviews on TripAdvisor. […]

  26. Elsa

    it seems that the latest comment describe exactly our situation with one guest who really hurted us and our image,and when another customer tried to write a positive issue TA wrote to us accusing us of frodulent msg,we did forward the e-mail but it was never published
    its a bit confusing wether we continue responding to that one comment or what??

  27. jane cappelletti

    We are happy to tell you that the hoels association of Italy – Federalberghi – is putting a legal case aagainst trip advisor for defamzione.

  28. Linda

    Fausto, I think it’s great that you are having a good experience with TA – I think everyone can agree that TA could be a good resource if used correctly. The problem is that TA’s own policies and algorithms make it so that it’s an imperfect source with a lot of power to make or break businesses – usually small independents that work hard.

    Our own property was #1 and #2 for years until a few lukewarm reviews brought us down and now we still have more Excellent reviews then the properties listed higher than us have total reviews. We can have up to 10 new excellent reviews which only bring us up one rating point, but heaven forbid someone submit one Average review and we are immediately brought down a few rating points. This to me makes absolutely no sense. So enjoy the high status while you can because TA’s algorithm will also eventually work in your disfavor as soon as you have a few not-so-glowing reviews.

    And believe me, these negative reviews can sometimes have no justification or accuracy to what your place is really like. You could have a disgruntled guest or someone who just for whatever reason didn’t like your place no matter how clean, comfortable or accommodating your staff were. We strive for excellence at our place, but we can’t please 100% of the people 100% of the time – that’s just life and reality. Unfortunately, the majority of our guests who rave about our place, don’t think to submit a review. I am working on rectifying that now, but there are a lot of would-be travel writers out there now and you get a lot of people who want to complain just so they have something to write about in what they consider their own pithy and interesting style. I find this phenomena appalling and one of the great disservices of an unregulated forum.

    My family and I have traveled a lot and have stayed in wonderful places and have also stayed in some not so memorable places. Unless I’ve been hurt or fallen drastically ill because of an accommodation (which hasn’t happened), when I’ve come home, it’s never crossed my mind to write venom on a travel forum about the less memorable places – I just consider the negatives to also be a part of the travel experience and in the end an interesting tale to tell.

    • Margaret

      We had a guest who had an unfair issue wih us even although we had given him 100% customer service. We are number one on TA for our area, so he said that there were means of getting at us on the internet. He put in a horrible review and even on forum posts he tried to blacken our name. Our percentage on TA dropped as a result taking us to number 2 for quite a while. We put in a management response and we informed TA about the situation explaining that the review was set to deliberately attack us, but TA refused to do anything.

      When another guest put in a review and stated also that the bad review in question was totally unjustified and not at all indicative of our property, TA emailed to ask him to edit his review so that the other review was not criticised. TA does seem to be onesided.

  29. Fausto

    Hi to everybody! Sorry for my incorrect English but I would lilke to defend TA because thanks to them I found a lot of new guests.
    Few months ago a guest wrote a fabolous review but with only one star. A mistake for sure. I wrote to TA staff of that and they canceled the review.
    For me was ok. The important thing is the rank(and I’m first!)not the single review.
    I think they made a right thing!

  30. Top Tnooz this week - FairSearch, Back to the Future, Organic Growth | Tnooz

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  31. Daniel Johnson

    Well, I’m going to buck the trend by saying we find Tripadvisor a really useful resource. The majority of our customers really like what we do and TripAdvisor makes it easy for us to spread praise from them to the world.

    Sure, we get some negative feedback but this is far outweighed by the good stuff.

  32. business owner

    My bad experience with TripAdvisor was when a member of my staff was falsely accused of trying to hurt a customer’s child. The member of staff is only 19 years old, wouldn’t hurt anyone, and has been badly upset by the false allegation which has apparently been picked up and spread by Facebook because the false allegation actually mentioned the staff member by name which is supposed to be against TripAdvisor policy. One of my employee’s “friends” knows they work here and spotted the review on TripAdvisor, then posted it on their Facebook page.

    The biggest issue with Tripadvisor (and Facebook) is that there is nobody actually there. A small business owner like myself finds they are just dealing with a computer and if it’s not programmed to deal with our problem there is nothing we can do. If only one could actually speak to a real person when there is a problem 99% of the time the problem could be dealt with quickly.

    However the number of issues that Tripadviser faces is now so large that I think the sheer cost and inconvenience of dealing with the lawsuits is going to make them change their business model. It will take time but the writing is on the wall. I am talking to our lawyers at the moment and their advice is to join one of the pending class action lawsuits because my employee and I wish to commence libel proceedings and the cost of doing so will be greatly reduced in a class action.

    See you in court TripAdvisor.

  33. PJ

    We had a couple who didn’t like there room, so they booked in somewhere else and I explained to them they should have come and addressed the issue with us instead of going to the Tourism centre and asking them to ring on there behalf.
    Anyway getting to my point, the couple left a bad review and also left a review for the other hostel they stayed at and mentioned my accommodation in the other hostels review(this is not allowed as in the TA rules) but TA would not remove our name from the other review, the review they left was the only bad review we have gotten, then 3 months later the couple left the another review again but made it look twice as bad, when I emailed TA and told them of the situation(the pics they attached in both reviews were the same) the just basically said that a couple is made up of 2 people so they both have an opinion.

    So my 2nd point is this, why do you ask travellers were they travelling as a solo/couple/business etc… a couple leaving a review is for a COUPLE. So they dropped me 3 places when I have 48 other good to excellent reviews.

    TA needs to be fair and reasonable in there decisions and not give a generic answer or not even reply at all.

    And then they have the cheek to email and ask you to pay for a priority listing on the website.

  34. Elsa

    I bellieave the problem is that people at TA are not reviewibg all the comments and so people with bad intentions can write as many comment as they wish without any notice from TA that this kind of comment is repeated ,that make us dought the TA credibility towards reviews on their site.its bad for their business and ours as well

    • Kevin Carter

      Hi Elsa,

      TripAdvisor invests a great deal of energy and resources into ensuring the integrity of our content. Reviews are systematically screened by our ever-evolving and sophisticated tools. We also have a large community of more than 40 million monthly visitors – travelers and hoteliers alike – who can and do report suspicious content, which is then investigated by our team of quality assurance specialists.

      Kevin Carter

  35. Daniel Johnson

    Wow, judging by these comments people are ‘very afraid’ of TripAdvisor. People should flip their viewpoints around and instead of worrying about the odd bad review think about how they can generate many more good ones from the customers who had a great time at their hotel/attraction.

    • Jeff

      I don’t actually detect much fear – more frustration, that tripadvisor is an imperfect, intransigent and potentially malicious tool. I’m sure you understand that owners are passionately investing themselves in their busineses, and when all that good work can so easily be undone (or at least undermined seriously) by malicious or anonymous mischief-raisers (hey – we’re not ‘afraid’ of genuine constructive criticism, that can help us to up our game) then that doesn’t seem fair. If we’re afraid of anything, we’re afraid of the power of TA to be mis-used by people trying to do us down unfairly – and by TA’s seeming unwillingness to listen and help when that happens.

  36. Tom

    Trip Advisor markets its product to the public, then urges innkeepers to pony up extraordinary amounts of money to use its site as a marketing vehicle. The hypocrisy fairly drips.

    Why should we give money to Trip Advisor to promote our property when (as the ambiguous responses from her salespeople above indicate) TA has absolutely no intention of policing the comments made on its site, regardless of how slanderous or inaccurate they may be?

    Trip Advisor can’t have it both ways. If they want to be a “trip review” site that publishes comments from travelers, then so be it. But they should have ethical standards that filter malicious and slanderous comments from their site; if the malice and slander are brought to their attention and they fail to remove the comments, then they are in collusion with the reviewers and deserve to be sued as a party to the slander.

    But the extraordinary thing is that this company then wants to extract cash out of property owners for some dubious marketing advantage–while still not giving ANY assurances that owners will be able to correct inaccuracies.

    OK. Let’s be straightforward here. Our inn has a squeaky-clean reputation, and our TA reviews have brought us business. And we are perfectly willing to accept TA as yet another point in the marketing and reputation matrix for our property.

    But TA starts to get sticky when it wants to get in bed with us. There is a clear conflict of interest here. If TA is taking money from innkeepers, then its credibility as an impartial review site goes out the window. And if TA takes money from us and doesn’t give us anything in return, then what good are they as an “enhanced” marketing tool?

    Our plan is to lump TA in with the myriad of other travel sites that post reviews of our property. TA (and other website) reviews have given us enough of a good reputation that a bad review–for whatever reason–will stick out like a sore thumb, and we’ll deal with it. And we will certainly notice if there is a trend in our reviews that alert us to quality-control issues. That’s how we plan to use Trip Advisor.

    In short, we will use Trip Advisor as a quality-control tool, and–to the extent that reviews are accurate–as a marketing tool as well. But we will *never* give Trip Advisor a dime.

    Somebody in corporate Trip Advisor culture has sold the company a bill of goods: let’s be an Internet Marketing Portal as well as a source of property reviews.

    Sorry, Orville. That will never get off the ground.

  37. Linda

    I completely agree with Marge and Robert. It doesn’t matter how eloquently and accurately you comment to negative reviews – TA’s cryptic algorithm (which I asked about and is apparently highly confidential) will still bring your rating down if you have negative reviews. Our property has more excellent reviews then the total reviews of properties rated higher than us – this to me makes absolutely no sense.

  38. Manon

    Oh my God, Every single complaint here is what I have had sleepless nights over. It is mind boggling that people can so easly abuse a social medium and cause untold harm to a business. TA needs to wake up and get with the program. If all hoteliers come together on this TA will be no more. I would much rather that we cure the problem than erradicate the problem. Sorry for the harsh words -but I have a team of very proud employees who have seen their hard work devasted by spiteful and fake reviews on TA.

  39. Hassan

    We have experienced much of what others have mentioned.
    1. Fake reviews
    2. Reviews from people who never stayed, and who confirmed this when we sent them a message
    3. Lower ranking to properties who are newer and have less reviews
    4. Misunderstanding of trip advisor about our location town vs suburb so next door neighbour hotels can be listed under different areas.

    In saying that our view is this ….
    1. We respond to all reviews. Feedback from guests is they are suspicious of hotels that only have rave reviews and can discern themselves on which reviews to take into account.

    2. We link to our TA reviews from our website and our emails for potential guests’ reference. However on checkout we never as guests to review our hotel on TA. If they want to that is ip to them and we feel it should be driven from their desire to do so not because we asked them to.

    3. We feel TA is just one tool and travellers rarely just look at it as their only resource. This is what they tell us. So therefore it is not our only medium of communicating with customers we use other travel sites and social media sites as well.

    4. Our greatest marketing tool is word of mouth. This is far the greatest reason for people staying with is. By this we mean face to face recommendations guests get from family, friends and other travellers they meet on the way.

    5. We feel if we offer the best service we can, understanding we will never please everyone, then everything else that sends business our way is a bonus.

    • Andrew

      with a slight change Google maps is another tool to be afraid of.
      In the past 12 months I have received 2 fake reviews one accusing us of being Racist and the second accusing us of taking funds from guest credit cards unlawfully, yet no Police have ever been informed and no charge backs requested from Credit card companies.
      Google refuse to remove them yet they bear no relevance of a stay at my establishment.
      As of today I have informed Kwikchex to defend me at all cost,they are based in my home town here in the UK

  40. marge lind

    one property in our area recently switched catigories and that seems to have reset their percentage. They have 100% with some average and poor reviews which has pushed us down in the ratings.How can one property with 90 reviews good to excellent have a lower percentage than a property with 40 reviews?

    • Kevin Carter

      Hi Marge,

      While I can’t comment on this particular case, newer reviews are weighted more heavily than older reviews in our ranking algorithm.

      Kevin Carter

  41. Robert Love

    Despite being the foremost attraction in town, we are listed as number 7. We get tens of thousands more visitors than higher listed venues. Our reviews go back 7 years. Our attracton today is greatly improved from 7 years ago, but old ratings pull down our average. Recently opened attractions that are ahead of us have 1/10th as many reviews. These go back only a year or two, and many do not appear to be legitimate. All old ratings should be removed after 3 years. In our case they are no longer even remotely applicable. Requiring TripAdvisor visitors to sort by date is no solution. Some of our complaints are about staff members that are no longer even alive!

  42. Kevin Carter

    The Q&A below with TripAdvisor CEO & Co-Founder Stephen Kaufer addresses many of the above questions and comments.

    In particular, he notes:

    “We believe there is tremendous value to having as many reviews as possible on every property. Quantity matters, as the wisdom of the crowds drowns out the anomalies (good and bad) that can happen on any individual stay. We value the extra quality and reliability that the large number of reviews generates; and we know that if we were to require validation of a stay, the burden on the consumer would dramatically reduce the number of reviews contributed. We have considered requiring reviewers to provide their real names, but feel that we would get less candid reviews as a result. It is human nature to provide a more honest assessment when a level of anonymity is maintained, and our mission is to help every traveler find that truly candid information in order to plan the perfect trip.”

    Link to article:

    Kevin Carter

    • Andrew

      I can not understand how anyone can come to the conclusion like Kevin Cater does that users acting under a level of anonymity will leave a more honest review than someone having to provide a real name,surely it works the other way round,I for one would have no problem leaving a review using my own name-once again Tripadvisor just do not seem to grasp the problem of hiding behind fake names or e-mails helps promote slanderous and un true reviews.
      Can Tripadvisor now explain why after refusing to remove some outrageous reviews have they now decided to do so, after being threatened with legal action,what changed all of a sudden that made these reviews suddenly not meet certain criteria yet you refused to removed them when owners requested that you did??

      • Andrew

        Apologies my previous post was meant for comments made by TripAdvisor CEO Stephen Kaufer and not Kevin Cater.

  43. Jeff

    Thanks for the pointers. Kevin, in one of your responses you said: ‘If someone is writing a review out of spite it tends to show, especially if the review in question is the only, or one of the few negative reviews for an otherwise highly rated property’. I agree – so it seems especially unfair that such a review influences our position in the tripadvisor ratings. We’ve slipped against our competitors, presumably (why else could it be?) because of just such a review.
    Whilst I’m here and writing, I should also say that it’s ironic that this article extols the virtue of interacting positively, carefully and meaningfully with our clients/guests – but in trying to talk rationally and reosonably to you at tripadvisor about our own problems and frustrations over a spiteful review, we get only corporate-speak and non-engaging answers. I’m rarely inflamed to anger, but boy, tripadvisor got me there.

    • Kevin Carter

      Hi Jeff,

      We are listing to comments like yours and, in response, we’re planning the launch of a global customer care unit.

      Tnooz provides more details:

      Kevin Carter

      • Kevin Carter

        Sorry. That should be “listening.”

      • pallavi

        Dear Kevin,

        i came across your post while surfing for “how to get unfair review removed from tripadvisor sight”.

        I am a hotel owner who had complained about a wrong review which highlighted my name and called me a con woman and someone who has cheated many guests in the past. I wrote a long explanatory mail to trip advisor describing the entire experience with the guest. She seemed like a young girl who wrote everything incorrectly because she was not given the discount she wanted while checking out.(she was given some discount & she herself told me that if she gets a discount she has no problems to talk about,it was like a threat like you give me a discount or else…).She opened a tripadvisor account the same day and posted her first review slamming us completely and incorrectly. I explained this to the triapdvisor in a long email, they removed the review in question and then 4 days later they put it back on.!!

        i wrote to them again 3 days ago and am still waiting for a response. It is again tripadvisors published guidelines to have hotel reps names mentioned and “Questions or comments directed to property representatives are not allowed, the review guideline also says “Please refrain from using personally insulting language”

        the review is still reflecting! We work very hard and hence of course will take things personally when my name is being allowed to reflect with such unfair ,untrue remarks. I can give you a list of names of authentic travelers to check my credentials

        i do hope you can highlight the best way to get this review removed and why is it there when it is against tripadvisors guidelines.

        thanks you and awaiting your comments.

  44. Lin

    Hi Brian
    I really think Trip Advisor would work better for me if I were listed in the correct category. I dont need marketing emails telling me to get my listing on Trip Advisor – I have already done that, but due to some misunderstanding, I have been listed incorrectly. I have been trying now for months to get my listing correctly listed under Hereford, which is where we are based, instead of Lugwardine which is a part of my address. I also note that there are many (19) listings under Hereford which are also very much out of Hereford but are still listed under Hereford. Trip Advisor seem to have one rule for 19 and one rule for me – could you please explain your listing policy and if you tell me that we should be listed out of Hereford, I would like to know the criteria used for that decision and if that criteria is being applied to the other 19 listings under Herford.

  45. Dino

    I whole heartdly agree must remove old negative review which were not valid at all,how about guest paid 0,redeem the points,what can innkeepers will do for that guest?must check overexagerated comments.
    wish trip advisor do something about this,have good day

  46. bob sulick

    Can you explain the process for remiving outdated reviews?

  47. Barry

    As many of us know, the whole problem with Trip Advisor reviews is that can be made by people who have not stayed at the hotel. I have had a number of reviews left by competitors as well as people who quite obviously, because of the innacurate nature of their comments,have obviously never stayed with us. You can use whatever tactics you like to respond to these comments but as far as I am concerned there is no point in perpetuating the lies.

    Unfortunately TA is now becoming a dicredited site which has been discussed in a number of recent newspaper articles and television documentries.

    I find most of my guests now prefer to follow the reviews on genuine sites such as,, etc. In fact, in a survey that I have carried out myself, only 1 in 15 of my guests had ever heard of Trip Advisor!

    Until TA can verify that guests have actually stayed at the hotel then the reviews become absolutely pointless. If TA did improve their methods of working I would be interested in using the company as part of my marketing mix. Until then however I will be giving it a miss.

    • Berynice

      I’ve found that many many of my guests got here by TripAdvisor, and was therefore persuaded to sign up for one year to see if it helped – it’s too costly for sure, but we’ll give it a try. Also, I’ve been lucky (*X*) not to receive any malicious feedback.

    • Berynice

      Barry, I’m amazed! I’d say 80% of my guests get here by TripAdvisor and the other 20% by word of mouth, and a percentage of them also checked us out on TripAdvisor. I do hope TA addresses the bogus reviews that people are complaining about – it seems to be the biggest complaint and problem. And my guests have told me they have had great success with TA. I am not a fan of TA trying to charge us for contacts – boy are their sales team aggressive! But to be fair, they have responded to me when I had problems (technical)…

  48. Derek Pennycook

    Thank you.

    I have just responded to my latest review and thought this list was very relevant.

  49. vinny

    Great Insights Brian. I must say that innkeepers take things very personally and in the case responding to reviews, this is where they often show this weakness.
    I want to also add that Trip Advisor should really consider not allowing people who have NEVER stayed at a property to actually review it. I have spoken to many average folks not in the biz of hospitality at all, and all agree this needs to be changed. Your site is far too influential to have non-guests post their negative experiences… this invites corruption of all sorts.

    • fred

      Our only negative tripadvisor review was from a person that never stayed with us and tripadvisor refused to remove the review. The review was slanderous in nature as well and mention the owner’s name.

  50. Rosemary Jensen

    I had a bad review that I can prove to be untrue but have not been able to get it removed from Trip Advisor. I have emailed to explain that the review could not have been from one of our guests. This bad review has had a negative impact and I do not understand why it is allowed to stay on the site. This does not seem to be in anyones’ best interests.

    • pallavi


      i came across your post while surfing for “how to get unfair review removed from tripadvisor sight”.

      I am a hotel owner who had complained about a wrong review which highlighted my name and called me a con woman and someone who has cheated many guests in the past. I wrote a long explanatory mail to tripadvisor describing the entire experience with the guest. She seemed like a college girl who wrote everything incorrectly because she was not given the discount she wanted while checking out.(she was given some discount).She opened a tripadvisor account the same day and posted her first review slamming us completely and incorrectly. I explained this to the triapdvisor in a long email, they removed my msg and then 4 days later they put it back on.!!

      i wrote to them again 3 days ago and am still waiting for a response. It is again tripadvisors published guidelines to have hotep reps names mentioned and “Questions or comments directed to property representatives are not allowed, the review guideline also says “Please refrain from using personally insulting language”

      the review is still reflecting! We work very hard and hence of course will take things personally when my name is being allowed to reflect with such unfair ,untrue remarks.

      • pallavi

        I meant ” they(tripadvisor)removed the review and then 4 days later they put it back on.


  51. Jeremy Head

    Hi Kevin
    Thanks for your response.
    So, why are a large number of hotels planning legal action against Trip Advisor because they feel that comments some people have made are untrue or at the least mis-leading?
    It just feels like this post is one big PR exercise prompted by that previous post to me. The timing is just a little too obvious.

  52. Jeremy Head

    Useful stuff, but I’d have asked the Trip Advisor people to comment on the impending legal action being threatened too… or at least to reference it at the start of this post. Feels a bit weird having a post like this that kind of glosses over what is potentially a huge problem for them…. it’s all interelated in my opinion (though you might disagree?)
    SO… The guest who says ‘Right, I’m going to slam you on Tripadvisor’ as they check out because they have an issue with something totally beyond the hotel’s control or see red about something really minor. How do you deal with that one Trip Advisor guys? I’d be interested to know your thoughts.

    • Kevin Carter

      Thanks for your comment, Jeremy. Brian’s tips apply in this case:

      “The vast majority of people recognize that not all customers raise reasonable concerns, and not everything will always be perfect. They will give you a lot of credit for offering a courteous and thoughtful explanation, especially when the criticism is unwarranted. This is your chance to set the record straight.”

      I would also add:
      Owners should use our Owners Center to dispute suspicious reviews that do not meet our policies, and also post a management response, as with any other review. If someone is writing a review out of spite it tends to show, especially if the review in question is the only, or one of the few negative reviews for an otherwise highly rated property. A well written management response can further underscore this.

      Kevin Carter

      • Andrew

        There is no doubt tripadvisor have lost a lot of credibility recently, my question is why have they played such a big part in creating on line tickle tackle like serialising things such as THE UKs DIRTIEST HOTELS I thought Tripadvisor was a user generated web site?? Also what is the point of replying to fake reviews

        • Barry

          I totally agree Andrew. You’ve hit the nail on the head. The content of the Trip Advisor site is generated in part by Trip Advisor themselves for sensationalism.

          Until they can police it correctly then the public will not believe in it.

          Comments I receive via etc bear very little resemblance to some of the rubbish espoused on Trip Advisor. That’s why it can’t be taken as a serious review site.

      • Barry

        Anybody who has tried to use the ‘owners centre’ will realise that there is very little room to leave your side of the story. The fact that Trip Advisor never responds speaks volumes.

        Let’s try and be honest here – Trip Advisor enjoy negative comments because it sensationalises their site.

        There is no point whatsoever in writing ‘well written’ management resonses unless the comment is genuine. Come on Trip Advisor you’ve had it too easy for too long and now the world is turning on you.

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  54. Edith Russo

    What about negative reviews, what’s the best practice?

    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @edith. We’ll ask Brian to come back with some answers, but I suspect the advice above is pretty much the same for negative and positive reviews.

      • Kevin Carter

        Edith, thanks for your comment. I’m responding on behalf of Brian while he is traveling. Brian’s advice applies to both negative and positive reviews.

        Kevin Carter

    • Barbara

      I just responded to an unfavorable review.

      Although we we able to settle up with a disgruntled client, Trip Advisor’s review process is lacking. It’s very easy, and public for people to review our establishment, but TA makes it much more difficult, and private for me to respond. I can only tell that that the review helpful? There’s no “NO” button. I can view the person’s profile, I can send them a message if they’ve left a legitimate email address, I can compliment the reviewer or report a problem with review, selecting from a very limited drop down list.

      I can not comment on the post, I can’t even disagree with it publicly — all I can do is email the person (that’s if they leave an address) and arrange something privately with them. And yet the post remains, dragging down the reputation of a good restaurant.

      Everyone who understand statistical analysis understands that their concept of putting a percentage on the the recommendation is valueless when there the number of reviews is not statistically significant. And yet, there is my 60% rating and *their own editorial take on it*: do not recommend. That’s not even one of the questions.

      Trip Advisor needs to take some of the advice given in this article. I’m a client of theirs too — and one who pays.

  55. Dennis Schaal

    Dennis Schaal

    Brian: Thanks for the helpful advice.

    Another issue came up recently: What is TripAdvisor’s policy regarding reviews that may be five or six years old and out of date? Do you remove reviews after a certain period of time. Shouldn’t you, if you don’t already?

    I’ve heard rumors that you remove older reviews for some chains and not others. Can you provide some insight on that?

    • Kevin Carter

      Thanks for your question, Dennis. I’m responding on behalf of Brian, since he’s on the road. We believe that a history of reviews can play a part in helping travelers plan their trips, and therefore, we don’t remove reviews due to age. However, we recognize that more credence should naturally be paid to the more recent reviews, so visitors to our site can search by date to view the most recent reviews first.

      Kevin Carter

    • Lunetoile

      This is not so much a reply, but, an add-to, comment on the above. I have a horrid review, whihc need addressing, from Nov 12 2007…..and I wish to respond.

      The review is up, for all to see, but, when I choose to respond, the list of reviews available, in the tick-box you supply, only goes back as far as 2008. Please, either make this Nov 2007 review, titled, Little Disappointing, disappear, or, enable me to reply. Please? Many thanks, Sue

      • Jelte

        Well, this is funny!
        We get an article on how to act on reviews, and immediately can see how the writer is doing himself…
        1. Respond quickly – most questions he leaves unanswered
        2. Respond professionally – well admittedly, completely ignoring the questions in your answers nowadays seems an accepted professional response, irritating to customers though.
        3. Avoid jargon – If you don’t reply, that’s also avoiding jargon?
        4. Highlight positive changes – I’m guessing there will be none
        5. Careful with privacy – What about the privacy of the hotel owners?
        6. Be original – Hardly, only quoting Stephen in the last post
        7. Show gratitude – Well TA, show us the gratitude for commenting on your site…

        Hey TA! Why aren’t you following your own rules now that this post seems to generate reviews on your business? All talk no walk?
        New online publication laws are needed so that persons and companies get the right to remove their name from being used on sites.

      • Edda Gardini.

        This is also an add-to, comment on the above. We also had a very horrid review, which needed addressing, dating back to 2007…. when we chose to respond, the list of reviews available, in the tick-box supplied only goes back as far as 2008. Either help us to make this review Titled”Dingy and Cheap”, disappear, or enable us to reply and set the records straight, as numerous points raised and negative comments in this review are
        not even affiliated to their stay at our Hotel.

    • Benabdallah Adnane

      Thank for your tips ,they are quite interesting and very helpfull.
      My only concern is the easyness to introduce a comment.Our hotel is victim of a competitor we think because since a month we see some comment that are not in line with Tripadvisor objectives which is to share hotel experience and giving advice and tips about their stay.Since one month ,and at a regular frequency somebody is putting a comment criticising all departments with no exception and putting tags like “à fuir” .Why Tripadvisor team are not controling that comments that have nothing to do with their philosophie.What can we respond to such 100% negative with no specifics and that we are sure are not customers. Do you think you will have a solution of screening such destructive comment? And what can we do when we fill that as a cyber attack.Should we just keep accepting it and letting our rating going down (in one month we moved due to this kind of comments from 3rd place to 26 ranking ! While most of the comments are positive and helpfull to ameliorate some departments
      Thanks and best regards

    • Sprayview Hotel, Victoira Falls, Zimbabwe.

      I have to say that I totally agree with Dennis Schaal and the points that he raised, why keep reviews as old as five or six years and out dated information. Circumstances change and so does Management in the Hospitality Industry. Now the new Management team will be tarnished with the same brush and the hotel may not stand a chance of prooving itself to prospective new clients.

  56. Tweets that mention Top tips for hotels when responding to reviews on TripAdvisor | Tnooz --

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Cottage LodgeB&B, New Mind, R Cook, Kevin Mitchell, Mobile Feeds and others. Mobile Feeds said: Top tips for hotels when responding to reviews on TripAdvisor […]


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