the recommendation of current or former clients is a major driving factor in gaining new clients; in fact, they account for over 80% of referrals. It’s important for the growth of a business to invest in keeping customers satisfied to the level that they will repurchase or refer others; more word-of-mouth referrals equals higher revenue. Thus, it’s critical to learn how to measure the level of guest satisfaction for a hotel and start conversations with customers about their experience, whether positive or negative in order to develop a consistent company-wide strategy for improving guest satisfaction across all levels and departments.
The Net Promoter Score, or NPS, is one method of learning to what extent clients are willing to recommend a business, using an “ultimate question” as the best predictor of repeat purchases or referrals: “How likely are you to recommend [company X] to a friend or colleague?” The NPS is the difference between the percentage of promoters and percentage of detractors- those who gave a response rating of 9-10 versus those whose response rating was 0-6.
It’s notable that this “ultimate question” is best applicable to clients who have a choice in their purchasing decisions; for example, if a client is staying in a hotel through a company loyalty plan or for a conference, the questions “How strongly do you agree that [company X] deserves your loyalty?” and “How satisfied are you with [company X]’s performance?” yield results more predictive of growth.
The NPS is by no means a perfect system, but it’s a great jumping off point to measure the level of guest satisfaction.
Guest satisfaction surveys can give you an NPS for a hotel, but without direct consumer feedback, it’s impossible to know what made a client give that rating. The score is important, but what it represents is much more than just a number, and it’s key to know why clients are responding the way they are. It’s advisable to include a required option on your survey to have a client explain why they are or are not willing to recommend the hotel. Even if NPS surveys are anonymous, include demographic questions to better categorize responses into different sections of the client base- this may help determine the root of the problem.
Pay close attention to comments submitted by clients, as they will often show patterns and trends that are indicative of problems within the business or positive feedback about aspects of their experience that should be maintained. Follow up directly if possible with dissatisfied clients, as this could prevent them from becoming detractors.
Despite these efforts, it may prove difficult to collect guest feedback. While it’s helpful to have to know the areas that need improvement, ultimately the best way to ensure guest satisfaction is to always provide them with an exemplary experience and to be proactive in ensuring the hotel is running as efficiently as possible.