A negative hotel customer experience has the potential to affect a property’s success in a variety of ways. Whether by raising an alarm while on the property or by harming your ranking with a poor online review, a hotel guest with a complaint can leave a lasting mark. Successful hoteliers and hospitality professionals understand how an unresolved guest issue can affect a hotel’s performance, and they place significant value on handling guest complaints smoothly.
COMMON HOTEL GUEST COMPLAINTS
Familiarize your staff with the most common complaints hotel guests make and take proactive steps to address potential concerns before they arise.
Research common hotel mistakes and how to avoid them and train hotel staff to recognize and respond to common guest complaints such as:
- In-room cleanliness concerns
- Unpleasant odors
- Problems with the temperature
- The trouble with the wifi
- The lack of free amenities
While a fair number of guest complaints are the product of hotel service or an issue with the property, others arise out of problems that are out of the hotel’s control entirely.
Experiencing issues with a third-party site, not receiving an expected package, or getting stranded due to weather complications could cause a guest to complain.
LOCATING GUEST COMPLAINTS
Certain guests are comfortable speaking up and are prepared to notify a team member if they’re unhappy with an aspect of their stay.
They may speak to the front desk staff, request a manager, or make a complaint to another staff member directly. But hoteliers cannot count on every guest to vocalize a complaint.
Not all guests are comfortable with confrontation, and some would prefer not to make a complaint during their stay at all.
In fact, hotels often receive post-stay feedback from guests who didn’t bring up a concern during their stay, but who made a complaint in a feedback survey or review after departure.
Keep your eyes and ears open for guest complaints so that you can respond to them as soon as possible.
CONSEQUENCES OF UNANSWERED GUEST COMPLAINTS
Failing to respond to guest complaints in a suitable and timely manner can hinder a hotel’s performance in a variety of ways.
Failing to oversee guest complaints can lead to revenue loss. While correcting a guest issue could mean reducing the room rate, or comping a guest’s stay, failing to manage a guest complaint could cause a guest to choose not to return to your property.
Unanswered guest complaints can damage a hotel’s reputation. Dissatisfied guests may share their feedback on hotel social media pages, review sites, online booking sites, or within the community.
Negative online reviews can affect a hotel’s SERP placement. Online guest complaints and negative reviews can damage your hotel’s SEO ranking and placement on SERPs (search engine result pages).