Prize offered for thoughts on hotel reviews
JCU researchers are investigating how influential online reviews can be when choosing a hotel, and are offering a $100 prize to people who participate in their survey.
JCU’s Dr Breda McCarthy said the apparent importance of electronic word-of-mouth ratings to hotels cannot be overstated.
“Most people will look at reviews before booking a hotel and hoteliers are actively encouraging their guests to spread positive word-of-mouth through online platforms such as Trip Advisor,” she said.
Dr McCarthy said her study aimed to find exactly what impact these reviews had on potential guests.
“Several studies have found that online reviews have a direct and significant effect on the brand image of hotels and the volume of online bookings. But some experts believe their impact is not that clear cut,” she said.
Dr McCarthy said various factors are likely to reduce the credibility of online reviews.
“There are reports of fake reviews appearing on the internet. Very negative reviews could actually be posted by competitors, or by unreasonable customers who just want to vent their frustrations! Customers may suspect that very positive reviews are posted by hotel employees.”
Dr McCarthy and Associate Professor Pengji Wang from JCU Singapore are running a survey to find out how people evaluate online reviews when booking a hotel room online.
The researchers are looking for people who book hotels online and are over the age of 18 to share their thoughts.
“The survey will take about 10 to 15 minutes and everyone who completes it can enter into a prize draw with a chance to win a $100 shopping voucher,” said Dr McCarthy.
If you would like to take part in the study it can be found at: https://jcubusiness.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_e9YPb4E8wr2iJgx
Dr Breda McCarthy