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Morticia

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I've been happily chugging along with 5 stars on TA for a few weeks now. The 2 inns ahead of me have been getting a lot of 5 star reviews so now I have 4.5 stars. I think you get your star rating based on reviews other than your own. It's comparative to other places. I haven't had any new reviews since the one that popped me up to 5 stars. My reviews are now 'stale' and have knocked a half point off.
I'm surrendering. It's tough to play when the rules change everyday.
 

Samster

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Don't worry about it. Keep on doing what you do and let the review stuff go! It is what it is........
 

wendydk

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Morticia...I truly think that the 4.0 vs 5.0 overall ranking difference is lost on readers. They want to know what people SAY about you. As long as your reviews are positive, you have it made in the shade.
 

Morticia

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Morticia...I truly think that the 4.0 vs 5.0 overall ranking difference is lost on readers. They want to know what people SAY about you. As long as your reviews are positive, you have it made in the shade..
Little Blue said:
Morticia...I truly think that the 4.0 vs 5.0 overall ranking difference is lost on readers. They want to know what people SAY about you. As long as your reviews are positive, you have it made in the shade.
Around here 4 stars puts you close to the bottom of the list and THAT makes a huge difference. Hanging on to third place is ambitious on my part!
 

Highlands John

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Morticia...I truly think that the 4.0 vs 5.0 overall ranking difference is lost on readers. They want to know what people SAY about you. As long as your reviews are positive, you have it made in the shade..
Little Blue said:
Morticia...I truly think that the 4.0 vs 5.0 overall ranking difference is lost on readers. They want to know what people SAY about you. As long as your reviews are positive, you have it made in the shade.
Around here 4 stars puts you close to the bottom of the list and THAT makes a huge difference. Hanging on to third place is ambitious on my part!
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Yes, I'm also struggling to hold on to 3rd place around here. 4 years ago when we first started deliberately chasing reviews we very easily attained the no.1 stop, not just locally but in Scotland too. More businesses are TA savy these days and we have to fight to maintain our position.
 

MTLLodge

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So are you all saying that you ask your guest for a review? Hmmmmmmmm maybe that is why I don't have any.
 

Morticia

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So are you all saying that you ask your guest for a review? Hmmmmmmmm maybe that is why I don't have any..
MTLLodge said:
So are you all saying that you ask your guest for a review? Hmmmmmmmm maybe that is why I don't have any.
At the very outset, it doesn't hurt to ask select guests to write a review, IF you want them. I used to ask but I don't any longer. I didn't have a very big success rate with that line anyway. My guests are not internet happy. Reviews now are a total surprise.
 

Copperhead

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Mortica wrote: It's tough to play when the rules change everyday.
That is excactly correct. My one 4 star rating among all 5's changed my overall ranking to 4. The only thing I can think is that some of my other reviews are considered 'stale' and are worth less now. Now that they have moved my listing to the small town, instead of with my close by city, I might as well have been brushed off the face of the earth as no one searches for that little town - there is nothing there - not even ME! I paid for the link prior to them moving me and I am royally
over this. A total waste of my money to which I plan to bring to their attention.
 

Morticia

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Mortica wrote: It's tough to play when the rules change everyday.
That is excactly correct. My one 4 star rating among all 5's changed my overall ranking to 4. The only thing I can think is that some of my other reviews are considered 'stale' and are worth less now. Now that they have moved my listing to the small town, instead of with my close by city, I might as well have been brushed off the face of the earth as no one searches for that little town - there is nothing there - not even ME! I paid for the link prior to them moving me and I am royally
over this. A total waste of my money to which I plan to bring to their attention..
Personally, I think that now that they have requested payment, they'd better be listening a whole lot better than before. Otherwise, I think a TA website is in order...kind of like: DontPayTA.com wherein anyone who DID pay this year and got worse service than prior years goes on record with what happened, what they did to resolve it and how TA responded. Then everyone can make up their own minds how it works.
BTW, the whole thing about putting ALL the lodging properties together with fewer than 12 in a town is loony. The website should function seamlessly across any city/town. If I'm looking one day for East Overshoe lodging and the next day for NYC, I should not have to figure out how the site works all over again.
My BIL used to say, 'You get what you pay for,' when I complained about Google. Well, if I'm paying, I expect service.
 

JBloggs

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MTL the review sites think you should ask for reviews. They send us cards to put in the rooms and give to our guests. They think they could email them on our behalf and ask for a review.
Asking, is up to you whether you do it or don't do it. I guarantee those with a high number of reviews are asking or rewarding in some way. I know they will deny it, but there is no way they could have hundreds of reviews otherwise.
 

Copperhead

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JB wrote: I guarantee those with a high number of reviews are asking or rewarding in some way. I know they will deny it, but there is no way they could have hundreds of reviews otherwise.I agree! There must be some type of 'thank you' going on. I just can not believe that we have that different of a guest demographic than those folks. We have very happy guests leave here stating they will be posting a review but nothing ever appears. We all know that when they get home their lives get back to normal & not that we are forgotten, but posting a review has slipped their minds. I have tried the post emails, that gets me zip as well...other than a personal email back from time to time. There may be a couple that complete the review, but do not follow through with the confirm email, but I just do not believe that there are an abundance of those.
 

Highlands John

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So are you all saying that you ask your guest for a review? Hmmmmmmmm maybe that is why I don't have any..
Most definately.
If you go to your page on TA, click the "Manage your listing" link at the top, there are then instructions and links that you can copy/paste into emails to guests.
 

Highlands John

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MTL the review sites think you should ask for reviews. They send us cards to put in the rooms and give to our guests. They think they could email them on our behalf and ask for a review.
Asking, is up to you whether you do it or don't do it. I guarantee those with a high number of reviews are asking or rewarding in some way. I know they will deny it, but there is no way they could have hundreds of reviews otherwise..
Joey Bloggs said:
Asking, is up to you whether you do it or don't do it. I guarantee those with a high number of reviews are asking or rewarding in some way. I know they will deny it, but there is no way they could have hundreds of reviews otherwise.
I'm not going to deny it, of course we ask people to leave reviews, I don't understand businesses that don't. If I'm going to get a bad review, and it happens to most of us at one point or another, then I'd rathr have 1 bad review in 200, than 1 bad review in 3.Also, the more reviews are being added to our entry the quicker a bad review gets buried on pages 2, 3, 4, never to be seen again.
Now rewarding is strictly against TA rules and if you do that and TA find out then I expect they'd remove you from the site.That we most definately do not do.
 

Morticia

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MTL the review sites think you should ask for reviews. They send us cards to put in the rooms and give to our guests. They think they could email them on our behalf and ask for a review.
Asking, is up to you whether you do it or don't do it. I guarantee those with a high number of reviews are asking or rewarding in some way. I know they will deny it, but there is no way they could have hundreds of reviews otherwise..
Joey Bloggs said:
Asking, is up to you whether you do it or don't do it. I guarantee those with a high number of reviews are asking or rewarding in some way. I know they will deny it, but there is no way they could have hundreds of reviews otherwise.
I'm not going to deny it, of course we ask people to leave reviews, I don't understand businesses that don't. If I'm going to get a bad review, and it happens to most of us at one point or another, then I'd rathr have 1 bad review in 200, than 1 bad review in 3.Also, the more reviews are being added to our entry the quicker a bad review gets buried on pages 2, 3, 4, never to be seen again.
Now rewarding is strictly against TA rules and if you do that and TA find out then I expect they'd remove you from the site.That we most definately do not do.
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I don't think TA removes you but you get a lovely red warning message that it has come to their attention that the reviews may have been paid for and are not 'unsolicited' guest reviews. (And, yes, they DO tell you to solicit away!)
 

One Day

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OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?
 

Morticia

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OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?.
One Day said:
OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?
Reduced rates on their next visit, gifties, free dinner, etc. Or flat out cash.
 

One Day

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OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?.
One Day said:
OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?
Reduced rates on their next visit, gifties, free dinner, etc. Or flat out cash.
.
yeah..........they would have to post the review before checking out...no?
I wouldn't give a guest a discount for a future stay....telling them....btw.....here's a discount certificate for a future stay.....but, you have to give us a great review when you get back home.................if they don't.........what do you do? ..........not honor the certificate?
Pay them cash...........sure.........here's $20......when you get back home, post a great review of us..........
Problem I see with giving guests anything for a review...........how the heck do you trust them to do it when they get back home?
I'd be more inclined to think they are pushing the issue during their stay......to me that would be like telemarketing......I don't appreciate the push
 

Copperhead

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OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?.
One Day said:
OK........so perhaps others are "paying" guests for reviews..........how are they doing this?...........what compensation?
Reduced rates on their next visit, gifties, free dinner, etc. Or flat out cash.
.
yeah..........they would have to post the review before checking out...no?
I wouldn't give a guest a discount for a future stay....telling them....btw.....here's a discount certificate for a future stay.....but, you have to give us a great review when you get back home.................if they don't.........what do you do? ..........not honor the certificate?
Pay them cash...........sure.........here's $20......when you get back home, post a great review of us..........
Problem I see with giving guests anything for a review...........how the heck do you trust them to do it when they get back home?
I'd be more inclined to think they are pushing the issue during their stay......to me that would be like telemarketing......I don't appreciate the push
.
One Day said:
yeah..........they would have to post the review before checking out...no?
I wouldn't give a guest a discount for a future stay....telling them....btw.....here's a discount certificate for a future stay.....but, you have to give us a great review when you get back home.................if they don't.........what do you do? ..........not honor the certificate?
Pay them cash...........sure.........here's $20......when you get back home, post a great review of us..........
Problem I see with giving guests anything for a review...........how the heck do you trust them to do it when they get back home?
I'd be more inclined to think they are pushing the issue during their stay......to me that would be like telemarketing......I don't appreciate the push
Not necessarily would they need to provide the gift BEFORE the guest checks out! There is something called mail, or if the gift is a special discount on their next stay, that would be awarded at the time of booking.
I do recall a thread or 2 - here and on other forums regarding B&B's setting up a computer for guest use - having a link to review sites available there. There are problems with doing this as the sites do frown on many reviews with the same IP address being used.
 

JBloggs

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I asked once from an innkeeper that has 200+ and wins awards from them and is now nearly in foreclosure...and I was called a shark or something. Basically told to rack off.
I truly wanted to know why those guests traveling to small town USA to a small B&B would post so many more reviews than anyone else we have ever known.
For some reason the question was considered wrong and how dare we think it is not all on the up and up and we all got the backlash.

Of all the guests who bring up TA on their own and tell me they found us there and will be sure to write a lovely review the very minute they step in their door...never do. So yes, there is something more to it. I don't care what anyone says, solicit all the reviews you want, it is harder to get them, unless there is a twist to this equation somewhere.
DISCLAIMER - I am speaking of Inns here in the USA. Not overseas, things are different there, I realize this, I can only speak for this country and how things operate here. Our UK guests are the most willing to read reviews and write them. They rely on TA and others while making their travel plans. The 200+ was from an "other" website, not TA. So perhaps the "other" website allows the use of the one pc to write the reviews, unlike TA who more diligently monitors that IP.
 

Morticia

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I asked once from an innkeeper that has 200+ and wins awards from them and is now nearly in foreclosure...and I was called a shark or something. Basically told to rack off.
I truly wanted to know why those guests traveling to small town USA to a small B&B would post so many more reviews than anyone else we have ever known.
For some reason the question was considered wrong and how dare we think it is not all on the up and up and we all got the backlash.

Of all the guests who bring up TA on their own and tell me they found us there and will be sure to write a lovely review the very minute they step in their door...never do. So yes, there is something more to it. I don't care what anyone says, solicit all the reviews you want, it is harder to get them, unless there is a twist to this equation somewhere.
DISCLAIMER - I am speaking of Inns here in the USA. Not overseas, things are different there, I realize this, I can only speak for this country and how things operate here. Our UK guests are the most willing to read reviews and write them. They rely on TA and others while making their travel plans. The 200+ was from an "other" website, not TA. So perhaps the "other" website allows the use of the one pc to write the reviews, unlike TA who more diligently monitors that IP..
I've mentioned it before...less than 1% of guests have ever left a review. And this is asking them to. Which is why I've stopped.
 
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