Turning Negative Feedback into Opportunities for Your Australian Hotel

Etourism January 2024 Blog Photo From Canva Wk1
Posted on Jan 9th 2024

Dealing with Negative Online Reviews

Sometimes despite our efforts in providing a great guest experience, hotels and resorts in Australia may encounter negative reviews on platforms like Tripadvisor, social media Google reviews or online travel agencies (OTAs).

In this article we will explore methods to prevent and handle feedback while highlighting the outcomes that can arise when hotels approach these reviews in the right manner.

Resolve any issues before guests post a negative online review

One strategy for mitigating reviews is to proactively request feedback from guests during check out. This may already be a part of your operating procedure for desk staff. However did you know that by asking guests about their stay experience you can potentially prevent reviews from becoming public?

Pay close attention when guests provide feedback and make a note of their concerns. Address any issues promptly while they are still on site demonstrating empathy, towards any shortcomings they may have encountered with your rooms or services. Additionally communicate your commitment to rectify these matters.

You never know what positive outcomes may arise from measures! Even if guests have some complaints they often make sure to highlight the positives about their stay at your hotel to balance their feedback.

Put yourself in your guest's shoes

Reading a review about your hotel can be disheartening, especially when there are untrue comments. You might feel tempted to respond reactively. However it is important to respond professionally. This approach can help de-escalate the situation and show that you genuinely care about your guests and want to regain their trust. Additionally, understanding your guests and their negative reviews allows you to delve deeper into the issue and provide a response.

When faced with misleading information it is advisable to respond by acknowledging the correct information and correcting any inaccuracies in a professional yet empathetic manner. Offering to speak with the guest to resolve any miscommunications can also be an approach.

Reviews that contain content, personal attacks, on individuals, fake/spam reviews or threatening language should be reported for policy violation so that they can be removed.

Identify the cause of the negative feedback.

Before you compose a response it's important to read the review and fully comprehend the underlying problem to avoid any misunderstandings.

Are there details that you should make note of? If you have reviews, from platforms consider if there are recurring themes and similar complaints that require your attention. Identify the source of concern whether it's related to your hotel rooms, facilities or staff and jot them down on paper or in your notebook.

Your guests may not expect your accommodation to have great reviews all the time. However they do pay attention to how you respond to issues mentioned in reviews. They value your willingness to accept feedback and promptly address any problems while expressing gratitude for their insights and the opportunity to enhance their experience as guests.

Acknowledge and address the negative review

Here are some suggestions for crafting a response that rebuilds trust with your guests.

Firstly express gratitude towards the guest for taking the time to share their review – even if it is negative. In your reply acknowledge the issue at hand. Genuinely empathise with their experience. Take responsibility for any mistakes if they feel that your accommodation did not meet their expectations.

After acknowledging their concerns directly address the issue at hand. To address the problem, start by paraphrasing it in your words to demonstrate your understanding and commitment to resolving it. Offer a solution that includes correcting any information on your website providing training to your staff and considering additional personnel if needed. Outline the steps you will take to prevent issues from arising in the future.

Maintain professionalism throughout regardless of the severity of the review. When responding to feedback it's essential to use positive or neutral language when communicating with the guest. Avoid responding using hostile language. Remember that potential guests can read all responses so a courteous and empathetic reply to a review can leave an impression.

Keep your responses concise, clear and direct. If appropriate, consider taking the conversation offline for discussion. After addressing any concerns and resolving the issue satisfactorily, reach out to the reviewer. Kindly request an update on their feedback.

Can Negative Reviews Have Any Positive Aspects?

Absolutely! These reviews provide insights into areas where improvements can be made regarding accommodations, facilities and services. Understanding customer insights can be beneficial, for improving your hotel or resort and anticipating any future issues that may arise.

Once you have made enhancements to your services or facilities it's important to highlight these changes on your website, brochures and other marketing materials.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q; Is it necessary to respond to every review?

A; Absolutely. Responding to both negative reviews showcases your concern for your guests and demonstrates your commitment to resolving any concerns they may have.


Q; How quickly should I respond to a review?

A; It is recommended that you respond within 24 hours as this shows guests that their feedback is a priority for you.


Q; But what if the review's unfair or completely false?

A; In cases it is crucial to maintain professionalism while being honest. Acknowledge any inaccuracies. Take the conversation privately to address the concerns in a manner.


Q; What should I avoid saying in my response?

A; It's best to refrain from blaming the guest, making excuses or giving promises. Instead focus on offering solutions.


If you require assistance managing your hotel's reputation...

Perhaps you prefer dedicating more time towards day to day operations at your Gold Coast accommodation. Alternatively you might lack the staff or expertise in handling reviews.

eTourism is here to help! We have a wide array of services to help you build and manage your property's reputation online and attract guests worldwide. 

Need a website for your new hotel? We can develop a sleek and responsive website to help you get started. Showcase your rooms and facilities online with our professional resort photography service, and let your guests find the best tourist attractions in your area with our blogging strategy.

Found negative reviews posted on your social media page or website? Let us help you manage your reputation online. Call us today at 07 5502 2001 or email us at morebookings@etourism.com.au so we can get started today. You can also fill out the Online Enquiry form to send us a message or enquire about our services.

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