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Traveler Hotel Reviews: Which Brands Are Buzzing?

June 18, 2010 By: George Dooley

Traveler hotel reviews have become central to the online hotel shopping process and it is increasingly important for hotels to monitor online reviews and benchmark their activity against their competition, says PhoCusWright. The research firm's latest addition to its Social Media in Travel Series: Reviews & Sentiment provides an in-depth analysis of nearly 1.9 million online traveler reviews across more than 50 social travel websites. The study analyzes key differences in review volume and sentiment by hotel brand, star category and online travel websites.

The new study utilizes PhoCusWright's new Social Travel Advocacy Index, or STAI, which benchmarks review sentiments across the hotel industry. PhoCusWright's Social Media in Travel: Reviews & Sentiment reveals a wide variance in STAI across brands, hotel star categories and websites where reviews are posted.

"Online traveler reviews are now a mainstay of the hotel shopping process, and the landscape of sites on which travelers post reviews is both expanding and becoming more fragmented," says Douglas Quinby, senior director, research at PhoCusWright. "This new research reveals significant differences in the nature of hotel reviews across hotel segments and even across specific travel websites. Effective benchmarking means tracking performance against a hotel's relevant competitive set and segmenting by different types of social travel websites."

PhoCusWright partnered with Brand Karma by Circos to develop two key metrics to help hotels gauge their performance on traveler review: buzz and  STAI. Buzz represents the number of traveler reviews/mentions for a hotel brand per every 100 rooms, providing an index of volume. STAI measures sentiment, or the level of satisfaction among traveler reviews. Both metrics can be segmented by brand, star rating and other key attributes.

The report also segments this analysis by the source of the review (type of website on which it was posted) and hotel star rating. Custom segmentation by hotel brand is also available. The reviews analyzed for this study represent nearly 27,000 U.S. properties of 65 major hotel brands.



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