Thanks to websites like TripAdvisor and Yelp, and due to the growth of smartphone usage among the world’s population, we live in a world where the general public are reviewers, videographers, photographers and publishers.
These same people might be reviewing your tour or activity right now. If they’re not, then they should be because online reviews are good for your business. This is why we have our own TripAdvisor integration tool, enabling you to embed TripAdvisor reviews into your website. Here are seven reasons why…
1. People trust peers as much (if not more) than professional critics
Gone are the days when people used to turn to Lonely Planet for a hotel review, or the lifestyle section of a newspaper for a restaurant review. Nowadays people turn to online reviews when doing research on a product. This is because the people reviewing are likeminded people. These reviews are more real than those by a professional critic.
2. Online reviews are good for SEO
If your website has the facility for online reviews it will be good for your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) strategy. Search engine spiders (they crawl websites constantly) like unique content that’s regularly updated. If your website has reviews and your competitor doesn’t, search engines will prefer your website as it’s dynamic as opposed to the competition’s static website.
Also, more and more people search for reviews of a product before purchasing. By having reviews on your website, you have a better chance of ranking for these search terms.
3. They generate feedback
Be it good or bad feedback, everybody likes to hear what their customers think of their service. By having the facility to review your product online, you are encouraging your customers to tell you what they think about it. With this feedback you can improve your product, create advocates and more.
4. They open up a channel of communication
When a customer leaves a review, as well as offering their feedback, they’re giving you an opportunity to respond, thus opening a new line of communication. Post-customer review you can get back, thanking them, quizzing them or whatever else you want to respond with.
5. User Generated Content (UGC) can be generated
Finding something to say on your website and social media channels can be difficult. Online reviews can create stories to tell across your various platforms. Whenever somebody says something complimentary, tells an interesting story or posts a cool photo from your tour it gives you an opportunity to share it onsite and across your channels.
6. Bad reviews are good too
You might initially think that negative reviews are bad for your tour company, but they’re not. Negative reviews make the good reviews more authentic. Once there aren’t too many of them of course…
7. They help consumers with product selection
When a consumer lands on your website they are going to be presented with multiple products. This means having to make a choice. Reviews will help them make that choice, subsequently increasing your conversion rate at the same time.
Do you publish reviews from your customers on your website?
Want to find out how an online booking engine can impact your tour or activity company?
Written by Colm Hanratty
Colm is Founder and Managing Director of digital marketing agency Sixtwo Digital. After running Hostelworld.com’s content and social media for almost 11 years he felt it was time to branch out on his own, using all his experience to educate others in the travel space.