If you’re planning a trip, the best hotel can make or break your vacation. Whether you’re in the mood for first-class luxury or an affordable bed and breakfast, finding a hotel can be overwhelming. However, a few key sites can help you get it right.
In a new survey by civic research company CivicScience, TripAdvisor, Google, and Trivago were ranked as the top three best hotel review websites by travelers. While it’s no surprise that these popular websites topped the list, what may come as a shock is who came in second.
Google is gaining on TripAdvisor in the best hotel reviews category, thanks to its integration of the Hotel Finder feature into search results. With this tool, you can see photos, prices, reviews and street-view panoramas of hotels with the click of a button. Plus, unlike other site, it shows all taxes upfront — including European and Asian taxes that are often hidden or buried in the fine print. It’s also one of the few that show photos and reviews from verified guests — although you can only write a review after staying at the hotel (you don’t have to be a guest to post).
Agoda’s search and results page feel simple to read, but don’t skimp on important details. You can easily filter properties by type, such as hotels or resorts; and by room features like hot tubs or spa access. And you can see a variety of ways to sort prices, from lowest to highest. There’s even a Hot Deals tab that offers deeper discounts on hotels. If you’re willing to go a little further, you can use the hotel finder on the left side of the page to zoom in on your destination city and browse photos and prices of hotels in each neighborhood.
If you’re looking for the best hotel in your destination, start by making a list of attractions you want to see and restaurants you’d like to visit. Then, choose your hotel based on its proximity to those destinations and whether it has the amenities you’d like (such as free wifi or an in-room kitchen).
In New York City, where foodies can eat their way through all five boroughs, there are plenty of options. Those with more discerning palates might prefer to live like Eloise at The Plaza or enjoy upscale gastronomy at the Mandarin Oriental. But the city has something for everyone, from a classic hotel near Central Park to a boutique hotel on the Lower East Side.
Keeping your business visible on the top hotel and hospitality review websites is crucial, but it’s just as important to focus on niche review sites that matter to your target audience. Rather than trying to be everywhere, target review sites that provide the most value for your potential customers and track how your visibility is improving over time. By doing so, you can increase your quality leads while also increasing customer satisfaction. You’ll likely find that your conversion rate increases as well, as these quality leads are highly engaged and ready to book a stay.