Fewer reviews, marginally higher scores and it is far more difficult to score five stars are the latest findings that compare user-generated hotel reviews over a year-long period. The team at TrustYou, working in conjunction with Donna Quadri-Felitti, Ph.D., at New York University, Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management, has developed its first quarterly report identifying key trends in travelers' reviews and hotel satisfaction. Based on a sample of more than 250,000 reviews of US-based hotels from across 250-plus sources, the data and insights are segmented by region and major markets versus secondary ones. Review scores are based on TrustScore, TrustYou's aggregate score out of 100, pulling from all reviews written worldwide. Quadri-Felitti, an associate professor at NYU specializing in marketing, asserts that "Data, big or not, are only meaningful when managers find actionable insights from the patterns. Working with TrustYou's talented team, this thought leadership series was developed to provide those insights." Some of the highlights in TrustYou's findings, which are compared to third quarter of last year, include: Travelers Writing Less Travelers have written 9% fewer reviews compared this same time last year. Consumer review fatigue may be setting in, which underscores the importance of each review and management's thoughtful response to them. Travelers Are Being (Somewhat) Kinder with Feedback Guests are being a bit kinder with feedback with a reported 2% increase in overall review scores. The competitive intensity of major hotel markets puts pressure on management to constantly monitor and improve, which ultimately shows through in user-generated feedback. The US markets with the highest TrustScore go to New York (90.50), Orlando (88.98) and Chicago (88.12). The markets with the most improved TrustScores were Tampa-St.Petersburg (+3.6%), New Orleans (+3.2%), and Philadelphia (+2.6%). Good news for besieged Detroit, Michigan with an improved TrustScore for its hotels of 2.5%. Hoteliers Are Saying "We Hear You" Management response rates have increased by double-digit percentages, sending travelers a clear sign that they are being heard. In particular hoteliers in the Midwest, led by hotel managers in Chicago and Minneapolis, increased the volume of management responses by over 15 percentage points. This may be one reason TrustScores have improved in the US: engaging guests directly helps build credibility and trust among travelers in the public review environment. Five-Star Reviews Are Harder to Come By Remember we said travelers are being somewhat kinder? Despite higher TrustScores, hotels are seeing double-digitdeclines in five-star reviews. Across all markets and regions, consumers are less likely to rate their hotel experiences as five-stars. Hoteliers have to work harder to exceed expectations, delight and surprise guests and to differentiate their product and service delivery on what are increasingly high traveler expectations. Pricing is Not a Pain Point for Most For most major markets, 14 of the 25, pricing is not a sore spot for consumers. Are hotels being priced fairly or are there revenue opportunities in many markets? We will continue to track this in future reports. Download the full report at TrustYou