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Research finds online hotel reviews more important than price

I read this morning that new research from SAS and Pennsylvania State University in “Pricing in a Social World: the Influence of Non-Price Information on Hotel Choice” reveals that reviews trump price as the decisive factor in consumer choice. The study states that negative reviews will “eliminate a hotel from consideration, regardless of price”. The writing is on the wall for all to see – there is no point in spending even one dollar on marketing if there are what are perceived to be unbiased reviews of your hotel floating around on websites at point of purchase. Those hoteliers not paying attention to these reviews are likely to find that their online look-to-book conversion rate will suffer disastrous consequences. It also reminds me how many marketers, no matter what business they are in, are keen to spend money to acquire new customers, but are loathe to spend any time or money retaining the customers they already have.

Jon Pyle
Jon Pyle

Prior to founding roommarketer in 2003, Jon operated Pyle Marketing Group from 1991 to 2003, and held a senior sales and marketing management position with Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group in North America. In addition, Jon has held sales and marketing management positions with Jetset Tours (North America), and The Hertz Corporation. Since 1991, Jon has worked with dozens of the world’s leading hospitality companies, achieving results that have won him praise from small hoteliers to executives from the world’s largest hotel organizations.

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