TripAdvisor for Travel

Tour the New Tripadvisor: What It Means for Travel & Hospitality

By: Abby Sanders

 

These days, vacation planning typically means asking for recommendations on Facebook or taking a poll on Instagram stories rather than buying the latest Frommer’s Guide. (Honestly, extra points if you even know what Frommer’s is). And whether it’s from personal connections or paid influencers, we get tons of input on what the next adventure should look like.

 

So it only makes sense that Tripadvisor’s new interface brings it all together. While you can still book hotels, compare flights and scan reviews, the booking platform now feels more like a travel-focused social media site.

 

In other words, Tripadvisor boasts they’ve created the “world’s first ‘travel feed.’”

 

Sounds great – let’s figure out what that means.

 

What’s Changed

Gone is the process of painstakingly comparing prices and booking flights before your time runs out – well, maybe not gone altogether, but you can do that later.

 

First, the site has you scrolling through a feed that feels very much like Facebook. You can browse meals and activities and save them to different itineraries. The focus now is on curating the ideal experience based on recommendations both from your college roommate and the Travel Channel. You can choose to keep your trip plans private, share publicly, or send them to travel buddies.

 

Tripadvisor gives you a head start by recommending a few of the over 500 influencers and publishers that are already on board. Most are predictable (like National Geographic), though there are some surprises (does Pandora Music really have on opinion on my next vacation? Apparently so.)

 

All in all, they’ve made it easy both for the social media fiend and their grandfather to instantly build up an inspirational travel feed.

 

Yes, It’s Still A Booking Platform

Those who want to keep using the site to book a flight and hotel can still do that. They just might have to click past someone’s photo of the Brooklyn Bridge to get there.

 

And fortunately, Tripadvisor’s vast archive of firsthand accounts from real humans (not just the ones being paid $1,000 per post) hasn’t gone anywhere. All the reviews have carried over.

 

How It Will Impact Travel & Tourism

It remains to be seen how much this new social feed might affect the bottom line for restaurants, hotels and attractions. But it does offer another way to reach potential travelers while they’re still in the planning phase. The day-dreamers who are double-tapping photos of margaritas now have a reason to visit Tripadvisor and stumble across your hotel months before they search flights to the Florida Keys.

 

You can also expect more reviews, as the site is likely to draw in a new set of users while streamlining the photo-posting process.

 

Next Steps for Travel and Tourism Businesses

For starters, log in and get started with a travel feed. You can choose a few accounts to follow in under a minute, and you’ll get a feel for how your potential customers are navigating the site.

 

Take a moment to assess your business profile. When was the last time you added photos? Have you responded to the last few reviews (both positive and negative)? Make sure your profile is worthy of a Save and a Share.

 

Finally, set a reminder for yourself to check daily for reviews, respond to comments, and post photos on a regular basis. Tripadvisor users will be looking increasingly for businesses that are active, responsive, and personal.

 

The new Tripadvisor feed invites travelers to document their excursions even more thoroughly, from the fluffy hotel pillows to the lively tour guide. But the same basic rules apply: give your customers an awesome time. Any business that delivers that 5-star experience will appreciate every extra shot, share and like.