Like them or hate them, travel review sites are now part of every customer buying journey. No one trusts their reviews completely, and with good reasons. Still, people can’t help but gorge on reviews before booking a restaurant or a hotel room, myself included.
Small business owners in the tourism and travel industry feel now that they have no choice but to have their hotel, B&B or cafe listed on travel review websites. For a start it is a great way to attract new customers.
With a business model centred on reviews generated by people like you and me, travel review sites are inherently social. Their audience is massive and they often appear at the top of Google search results. This alone is a good enough reason to include them in your effort to build your online presence and use them to your advantage.
The internet is full of review websites and it can be overwhelming and time consuming to make sure your business is correctly listed on all the sites you can think of. With limited time on your hands, it is better to focus your effort on the most popular travel review sites, and forget the rest.
According to ReviewTrackers, these are the top sites that people are most likely to check before visiting a business.
Mostly known as the world’s leading search engine, Google is also the number 1 site for reviews. More than 6 in 10 customers read through reviews on Google. And that’s to be expected considering that more than 90% of all internet searches are taking place through Google.
When it comes to picking a search engine to find a hotel, 81% prefer to use Google. That’s huge!
Do the test yourself. Google any business and the search engine will show you among its top search results its own reviews with its own rating system along with the business’s location on Google Maps. Handy!
You’ll need to create a (free!) Google My Business page for your business to show up in search results.
Losing ground to Google, Yelp is yet another very popular review sites with 155 million reviews collected since its creation in 2004.
45% of consumers are likely to check reviews on Yelp before paying a visit to a business.
No stranger to controversies and also losing market shares to Google, TripAdvisor is still a favourite among travellers. It is the largest travel site in the world after all with over 225 million reviews published.
30% of customers are likely to read through reviews on TripAdvisor to guide their choice.
Since 2017, Facebook has been attracting more reviews than TripAdvisor putting the social network at number 2 behind Google for the number of reviews according to their distribution on major review sites.
Still, Facebook is only people’s 4th choice when it comes to finding reviews with 23% of consumers likely to check Facebook to make up their mind. But with such a broad user base, things are bound to change.
Here are the four main travel review sites where people are more likely to leave reviews. As a small business owner with limited spare time you should focus your attention on these websites.
And all of them are free!
Meet the Author
Hi! My name is Chris and I am a Dublin-based travel blogger, originally from France. Travelling from the Shetland Islands to Brittany, from Cornwall to Donegal, I hope to inspire people to make the Celtic frontier their next adventure.Learn more