When travelers start to plan a trip, they often use an Internet search engine, like Google. Some of the first hits to appear are courtesy of TrustYou, a guest feedback platform that gathers content, ratings, and reviews about hotels from different sites, even providing a TrustScore based on combined ratings.
Why is this important? If hotels do not know or understand what influences those scores, they may be missing out on an opportunity not only to improve their ratings but also to increase their overall online presence. Read on to learn more about what actually drives improvements in local search rankings, reviews, and the TrustScore.
TrustYou provides hotel review scores and summaries for more than 300,000 hotels on Google
This is visible on Google when clicking the question mark next to the hotel’s review summary. These review scores and summaries are calculated based on an analysis of quantity, quality and recency of reviews across the web as well as from the survey platform, TrustYou Stars. TrustScores and review summaries are also seen on hundreds of sites like KAYAK, Trivago, Hotels.com, Skyscanner, Wego, and more.
Earlier this year, TrustYou launched TrustYou Stars
This is a first-of-its-kind survey solution that allows hotels to collect reviews that influence the TrustScore. This solution also allows guests to push their reviews to Google as a Google review that is shown on Google below the review summary.
What This Means for Hotels
Hotels that want to make use of all reviews collected from guest satisfaction surveys to influence TrustScores and review summaries can benefit from using TrustYou Stars. With TrustYou Stars, 100% of the surveys collected impact a hotel’s TrustScore and review summary, and typically about 10% of guests will also push their review to Google as a Google review, impacting the TrustScore as well as the full text Google reviews that are shown on Google below the review summary. Clients using TrustYou Stars see 8% higher review scores compared to reviews from other sources, and on average about 50% of all reviews ever posted about a hotel come from TrustYou Stars when using this product.
Because reviews from TrustYou Stars are analyzed and integrated within a hotel’s TrustScore and review summary, they influence TrustYou’s entire review eco-system (Google, KAYAK, Trivago, Wego, etc.) which reaches hundreds of millions of travelers a month.
Hotels have the opportunity to use TrustScores, review summaries and full text reviews from TrustYou Stars to improve their own websites as well. TrustScores and review summaries can be annotated as rich snippets to promote your hotel on Google and encourage travelers to book (more on that here). TrustYou Stars reviews can also be incorporated onto a hotel’s own website for SEO benefits and to encourage more direct bookings.
To understand how this all impacts a hotel’s rankings on Local Search and Maps, let’s look at a recent Google blog post that explains the three key factors that influence rankings on Local Search and Maps. Google states that:
“Local results are based primarily on relevance, distance, and prominence.”
The blog post then provides more detail on each of these factors. Relevance is described as how well a hotel’s local listing matches a user’s search criteria. The way to impact a hotel’s relevance is by updating your hotel’s business listing and through review snippets (TrustYou’s review summaries). Google links to a second blog explaining this in more detail:
Google also states the following:
“Google review count and score are also factored into local search ranking—more reviews and positive ratings will improve a business’s local ranking.”
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Margaret Ady is a marketing, branding and PR expert, specialized in the hospitality and technology industries. Since 2012, she has led TrustYou’s marketing and communication strategy as the company’s VP of Marketing, and in 2016 she was awarded HSMAI Europe’s Top 20 Extraordinary Minds in Sales, Marketing and Technology for her work. Prior to TrustYou, Margaret served in leadership positions at The Walt Disney Company and The Oprah Winfrey Network and has provided research, branding and marketing consulting services to many companies, including 20th Television (Fox) and Nielsen. Margaret graduated from the University of Southern California with degrees in Economics and Psychology.