Is there any better surprise than receiving a glowing review from a guest? There’s a sense of personal and professional satisfaction that comes from providing a guest with an excellent experience, and knowing that it was recognised.

Conversely, there’s nothing more frustrating than discovering negative customer feedback online. Even if you did your absolute best, poor reviews sometimes happen.

In any case, it’s critical to take into consideration all of the customer feedback you receive for your property. With the right approach, the guest feedback loop can drive meaningful change and enable you to provide an exceptional experience every time.

What is the review feedback loop?

The review feedback loop is the general process that guests go through as they form an opinion about your hotel, and subsequently share their thoughts about your property.

The loop begins with perception.

The perception of your property is most impacted by your online presence. Your photos, virtual tours, descriptions and posts on social media give guests an idea of what they can and should expect during their stay.

Then, guests move onto the research portion of their guest experience. During this stage, your potential guests will often search for feedback from previous guests about your property on popular online review sites.

This is considered an objective and trustworthy source of information for guests, and it can greatly impact their opinion of your property — before they even book.

Finally, the last stage of the loop is the opinion stage.

At this point, guests have decided how they feel about your property and they will likely share their opinions with their friends, family members and even complete strangers in a public forum.

Why is the feedback loop important?

  • Feedback allows you to better understand what you are doing right, and where you can improve. When your guests tell you they love the homemade treats you offer in the afternoon, make sure that you promote this on your website. When your guests say your website takes too long to load, make a point to optimise it to improve the user experience.
  • Feedback gives you an opportunity to do instant damage control and to show off your customer service skills. It’s necessary to respond to all reviews, especially those pesky negative reviews. This allows you to immediately respond to a customer’s cry for help, while also proving to other prospective guests that you are committed to customer service.
  • Feedback can help you better understand your target market segment. The reviews you receive can showcase trends in customer preferences, and can be used to adjust your marketing strategies.

Tips for capturing customer feedback

  • Encourage your front desk staff to talk to your guests, and to ask them how their stay is going. In many cases, the front desk operator is the main point of contact for your guests during your stay. Routinely touch base with them and listen to the feedback that they hear from guests.
  • Create an annual survey to send out to your database. You can use the results of the survey to make necessary changes during the coming year, in hopes of improving the experience of every guest who stays with you.
  • Request online reviews in an automatic email. After checkout, schedule an automatic email that politely asks guests to review your property on TripAdvisor, Google or Facebook. This is a surprisingly effective way to generate more reviews.

Ultimately, when you have the right technology in place, you will be able to provide your guests with the experience they crave. From the online booking journey to the streamlined service during their stay, your guests will appreciate your commitment to providing a great guest experience.

Download the FREE Essential Guide to Perfecting the Guest Experience and learn how to provide guests with a quality experience before they book, while they stay and after they leave your property.

By Dean Elphick

Dean is the Senior Content Marketing Specialist of Little Hotelier, the all-in-one software solution purpose-built to make the lives of small accommodation providers easier. Dean has made writing and creating content his passion for the entirety of his professional life, which includes more than six years at Little Hotelier. Through content, Dean aims to provide education, inspiration, assistance, and, ultimately, value for small accommodation businesses looking to improve the way they run their operations (and live their life).