How hotels can combat bad reviews

By Orestis Bastounis, Technology Writer

Unhappy hotel guest complaining about poor service

A great reputation is a coveted asset for any business, one that’s earned over time through hard work and a solid understanding of customers and their needs. For hotels, that reputation can rise or fall via comments on review websites like TripAdvisor.com, a global guestbook that’s visited by over 450 million people[1] every month. 

Hotels know that it’s hard to keep everyone happy, but it’s now all too easy for disgruntled guests to let the world know they had a disappointing experience. They don’t hold back either. Review sites are littered with bad write-ups, some of them fair (“Clean and quiet. Unfortunately bad service in the restaurant…[2]”), some of them not (“The bathmat was too similar to the hand towel; I kept getting them mixed up [3].”)

Controlling the customer experience

Maintaining consistently high standards when guests have sky-high expectations is a challenge. The reality is that you can never fully control every aspect of the customer experience. A combination of bad timing and bad luck might mean that the coffee machine breaks down at the exact moment a jet-lagged guest arrives for breakfast, for example.

But where complaints are valid, there are often key lessons to be learned. Cleanliness, convenience, and comfort are the most common concerns raised about hotel service. On TripAdvisor, these range from bathrooms that “could use a deep clean” to staff that were “under trained and overwhelmed”; desks that had power outlets “on the opposite side of the room” and “no plug sockets by the side of the beds.” 

Exceeding guest expectations

The smartest hotels are already using this feedback to improve. They are changing the way staff are trained and increasing guest communications (pre- and post-booking). Not only that, but they are looking to exceed expectations, offering complimentary services (like a free shuttle to the airport) and implementing new in-room technology solutions. 

Take the “no plug sockets by the side of the beds” complaint. Rather than installing extra wall outlets in every room, hotels can add them quickly and easily via retrofit power blocks, which offer multiple mains, USB ports and/or wireless charging. Alternatively, hotels can turn to compact and convenient in-room charging products like the Brandstand CubieTime digital alarm clock.

The CubieTime solution 

Available in international configurations, CubieTime is perfect for hotel rooms with a pair of 220v UK or EU power sockets, two USB-A plus a modern USB-C port. It’s an innovative and reliable power solution, giving guests the convenience they need to power multiple devices without hunting around for a free mains socket or needing to unplug a lamp just to juice up their phone. 

The CubieTime digital alarm clock is one way of providing convenient charging for guests.

The CubieTime digital alarm clock is one way of providing convenient charging for guests.

Every aspect of CubieTime has been engineered to improve the guest experience. Not only is it neatly designed, but the minimal footprint makes it ideal for bedside tables. Crucially, it’s built for the rigours of the hotel environment, featuring surge protection and a security c-clamp, while meeting strict CE/TUV standards including a UL spill test.

Obviously, it’s still difficult to please the customer who complained that Stonehenge was just "a bunch of rocks... in a field. WOOOOOOOW!” or the guests who inexplicably moaned that their London hotel “didn't have an ocean view." [2] But by making small and effective improvements, hotels can augment the guest experience, combating small issues before they grow into larger problems. 

With CubieTime, a lack of plug sockets won’t be one of them.

Provide easy charging with the Brandstand CubieTime.

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References:
[1] https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/aug/17/how-tripadvisor-changed-travel
[2] https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Hotel_Review-g186338-d2554997-Reviews-or15-The_Ampersand_Hotel-London_England.html#REVIEWS
[3] https://www.loveexploring.com/gallerylist/69553/the-worlds-most-ridiculous-travel-complaints-ranked