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Try the following method which I find works great
1. draft an email reply letting out everything you want to say. Don't hold back curse, defame, threaten violence etc. etc. but......don't ever press send. Actually it's much safer to add a fictitious email address just in case you get tempted to send it......then
2. Calm down and rewrite it removing all the steamy stuff. Admit anything that you feel the guest was right in complaining about and give precise details how you will correct these defects. Make sure you correct them for next time. Defend yourself in detail if they have lied about anything and remember very few reviews are actually removed by OTA's. Now the next very important thing to do is to take advantage of the exposure of the review, even though it may be bad those who read it will take note, so market your property in the same reply. Talk about positive attributes of your property and any special deals that you may be offering at the time. You are bound to come out winning as you've turned a negative situation into a positive one.
Apparently booking.com have now changed the review system once again and have reverted back to the old method again!!!!
I was told this by our local regional representative for booking.com here in Valle d'Aosta, Italy, as he said they realised that the new system of the guest giving an overall score themselves was even more stupid than the old method because the guest still had to use the 4 faces (which equal 2,5 points for each face) to give a score for each of the 6 catogaries. This conflicted with the system for the overall score because if a guest wanted to give you say 9 points for your overall score he could not choose the right number of faces to match that score in the 6 categories.
Once again booking.com not thinking things through properly so they have now reverted back to the old system or slowly reverting back to it so not to confuse things too much for everyone....too late booking.com we are all (including our guests) already totally confused and have no idea what the hell you are up to !!!!!!
I've discovered today that the new scoring system is active now for all properties world wide.
Guess what though: The 6 individual categories (Location, Cleanliness, Comfort, Value, Facilities, and Staff) still have the same 4 faces for guests to score with and it's only the overall score, that guests now give themselves, that has the sliding scale from 1 to 10.
Wow I really thought booking.com team was smarter than this. How the hell can a guest give an accurate overall score for a property when he can only vote for each of the 6 categories as 2,5, 5, 7,5 or 10 ?
Come on booking.com, as I've said before this is not rocket science if you want to give guests freedom of giving their own overall score using a scale of 1 to 10 then you have to give them a sliding scale scoring system for each of the 6 categories as well.
I really think you guys need to employ more hoteliers in your company....just a suggestion
So booking.com all you need to do is tweek the new system. Don't let guests give an overall score as they have no idea how to calculate it. You work it out from the other scores they leave. This will result in a mix of the old system and the new but be far more precise.
It's not rocket science guys
I've never managed to get reviews removed even when someone openly defames you. The OTA's and review websites like Trip Advisor etc. don't dedicate someone specific to examine reviews because they think it doesn't produce revenue for them. Little do they realize that the more false and damaging reviews they leave published on their websites the more they penalise the property and inevitably themselves in the long run.
I suggest you try and explain what happened as diplomatically as possible and then use the opportunity to highlight the good points about your property. Get some advertising with your reply. People read bad reviews and if you can turn it around you will win.
Don't worry about your reply not being accepted because some websites say you are not supposed to advertise your property in your reply as I said previously unfortunately most OTA's and review websites don't dedicate much time to reviews.
This feature which booking.com offers to property owners for non refundable bookings is not clearly explained as it's not completely risk free as stated. Booking.com say the booking is guaranteed and risk free but one can only debit the virtual credit card 2 days before arrival and it's not visible until then. Booking.com also state that from the date that the credit card is visible the guest is responsible for payment not booking.com so the guests credit card details replace the VCC details on that date. If a property owner then debits the card 2 days before arrival and it does not go through for payment due to an invalid status the
it has to be marked as invalid and the property owner risks loosing out on a non refundable booking.
It really is better there not to opt for this feature as at least one can check credit cards for non refundable bookings at the time of the booking.
This really should be explained by booking.com more in detail as, as it stands it's really only risk free for booking.com and not the property owner
Social media chat rooms and websites bring results https://partner.booking.com/en-us/help/guest-reviews/were-changing-way-guest-reviews-work