TripAdvisor Ranking Factors: How To Improve Your Hotel’s Position


Learn about TripAdvisor’s ranking factors and how to improve your hotel’s online reputation. Host Ryan Embree shares the 4 factors that influence where your hotel ranks on TripAdvisor. Understand the context behind the ranking factors and find out how a comprehensive reputation strategy can help them all work together to increase your ranking.

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Episode Transcript

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Hey everybody welcome to TMG’s 5 in five. I’m Ryan Embree Brand Ambassador at Travel Media Group. Today’s episode of 5 in five is going to be around TripAdvisor ranking factors.

1. Quality

So let’s go ahead and get started the first and easiest to understand TripAdvisor ranking factor is quality of reviews. So this is the average score that your guest or traveler is going to leave you on TripAdvisor. TripAdvisor has one to five bubbles, other ranking sites might have 1 to 10. Before we move on to the second factor, however, I did want to talk about TripAdvisor’s scoring and how it looks to a traveler. Now let’s take two examples. One hotel that is ranked a 3.75. Now TripAdvisor doesn’t do quarter stars, so they are actually going to look as a three and a half star on TripAdvisor. The second property is a 3.26. So they’re also going to be shown as a three and a half star. But the interesting part here is if I adjust just a couple of these numbers and push this score by getting more positive reviews to a 3.8. Now, all of a sudden, this actually turns in to a four-star property, even though it’s less than four stars, the same can be true with rounding down bubbles on TripAdvisor. So if I change this 3.26 score to 3.20, it looks like I’ve lost half a star on TripAdvisor. Note the quality of reviews that you’re getting for your hotel.

2. Quantity

Let’s move to the second factor, quantity of reviews. This is the number of reviews that we’re getting. Another example of this, we see a perfect five star bubble and we have a four and a half star bubble. If I asked you right now, which hotel would you rather be? You would obviously say the five star because of quality. But when we add quantity of reviews, if we see that this property is new and it actually only has five perfect reviews yet this hotel has been around for awhile and has been able to get a quantity of 55 reviews. Even though the quality of their score is lower, they might actually be ranking higher on TripAdvisor because the more information that’s out there, it’s going to paint a more accurate picture for travelers looking at these reviews.

3. Recency

Let’s move on to the third factor, recency of reviews. So we’ve got right here, two reviews of the same caliber, four stars for each yet. If I add dates in here, and this review was left only two days ago, while this review was left in November of 2020, this hotel might be ranking higher because it gives them more accurate representation of how the hotel is closer to today. This is especially important when we talk about COVID-19, things can change at a moment’s notice for these hotels, so our hotel’s experience and guests expectations of the property could be fluid right now. Getting recent reviews is very, very important. We’ve seen a complete decrease of review flow since the beginning of COVID-19. So it’s hotels that are able to get a lot more frequent reviews recently that are really going to start to see some jumps, not only in the TripAdvisor rankings, but that’s also going to be shown in their occupancy reports.

4. Performance Over Time

And lastly is the newest factor, and this one was added in 2018, and this factor is represented as performance over time. So to explain this, let’s look at two hotels and how they’re performing reputation-wise on TripAdvisor’s website. We could have a property that is very seasonal, they get a lot of guests in the summer, not so many in the winter. So they see a complete uptick in reviews in the summer, and then they drop down to a low. So this kind of pattern you start to see, even though they go high up on the spectrum with lots of reviews, then all of a sudden in the winter things start to slow down a bit, the quality falls, and they’re definitely not getting as many recent reviews. Next, you have another property that really does consistently over time, they’re not getting as many reviews, but they’re consistently seeing growth. This property here, according to TripAdvisor is going to be rewarded for their performance over time because of consistency.

And you can’t have consistency without recent reviews, recent reviews comes from the amount of reviews that you’re getting. And none of this matters if there’s no quality. So all four of these factors have an impact on your ranking. TripAdvisor won’t show you the exact algorithm, but one thing that we do at Travel Media Group is help hotels with their reputation management. Our reputation management helps the quality of your reviews. So we’re getting more and more of your travelers out to public forums like Google and TripAdvisor to help you boost your overall star rating and average score. Our reputation management program helps you get more reviews and with that comes recency of reviews. And finally, with that consistency, our reputation management program will help provide performance over time. So if you’re interested in learning more about Travel Media Group’s reputation management program, please feel free to reach out to us. My name is Ryan Embree. Thank you for listening on TMG’s 5 in five.

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