May 07, 2013

TripAdvisor’s plan to get another 100 million reviews: Have hotels do the work

After testing it since November 2012, TripAdvisor today officially launches Review Express, a feature that enables registered hotels to bulk upload up to 1,000 guest email addresses at a time, add a message with the hotel logo, and then TripAdvisor will email guests in the hotels’ name to prod them after their stays to write a TripAdvisor review about the hotel.

A first-mover in user-generated hotel reviews, TripAdvisor already has scale and a huge review lead over competitors, and Review Express — if it is adopted by large hotels — will widen the gap. That, in turn, would enhance TripAdvisor’s already-to-die-for SEO, and advertising revenue.

The hotels can’t offer incentives or solicit positive reviews in these Review Express emails, but nonetheless there are a lot of benefits for the hotels in this — and mega upside for TripAdvisor, too.

The Review Express emails provide a link to the hotel’s “Write a Review” page on TripAdvisor, which will boost the number of reviews a hotel gets. The more reviews a hotel gets on TripAdvisor, assuming they are mostly positive, the higher a property’s ranking would trend in TripAdvisor — and that turns into additional bookings and revenue.

Users will see a message underneath TripAdvisor reviews solicited in this manner that reads: “Review collected in partnership with (hotel name).”

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