5 Scary Things That Can Ruin Your Hotel

Is Your Hotel Scaring Guests Away? 

5 Scary Things That Can Ruin Your Hotel

Can dirty sheets, sad front desk clerks, filthy carpets and a bad online reputation frighten guests? Learn the 5 Scary Things That Can Ruin Your Hotel by SmartGuests.

Different travel sites and paranormal groups cite The Stanley Hotel in Colorado as one of the most haunted hotels in the world. In fact, this hotel inspired the setting of one of the best horror novels of all time – Stephen King’s The Shining. It is rumored that when Stephen King and his wife stayed here, they left their room for a couple of minutes and when they came back, they found that their suitcases have been unpacked and their clothes neatly stowed in the closets.

There are other haunted hotels in the US and in the world, and they scare majority of travelers away. However, even if restless spirits and ghost don’t roam your hotel, you can still be spooking travelers.

How? Well, here are five things that scare hotel guests away and ultimately, can ruin the reputation of your hotel.

  1. Bad Online Reviews

Here’s the thing, between what you’re saying and what other guests are saying about your hotel, travelers will believe what their fellow travelers remain saying. This is why the influence of online reviews have grown over the past few years. Every month, millions of travelers consult TripAdvisor, Google Place, Yelp, Facebook reviews when scouting for hotels to book and if your property has more negative reviews than positive ones, you’re definitely going to spook potential guests away.

It’s important that you regularly audit what people are saying about you online. Are they true? Are they raising valid points about your hotel? If yes, then do something about it! Improve your property and boost your service level. Are these negative reviews just isolated cases. Then you have to set things straight and respond to all negative reviews in a timely manner.

Related: What to Do When Guests Threaten Your Hotel with a Bad Review?

  1. Incorrectly Responding To Reviews

As hotel professionals, we work hard day in and day out to deliver the best possible hotel experience to our guests. This is why when we read bad reviews about our property or our service, our knee-jerk reaction is to be defensive and refute the negative comments. We can get frustrated and even angry – and many of us make the mistake of responding to negative reviews when we are pretty emotional. The result? We sound like we’re berating the guests. We appear close-minded because we’re not open to criticisms.

Angry hotel people can definitely scare potential guests away, which is why the manner in which we respond to negative reviews is very important.

First, you can not take these criticisms too personally. We know this is difficult, but if you want to have the right mindset when responding to reviews, you have to do this. Once you’ve changed your mindset, you will see these negative reviews as constructive feedbacks rather than personal attacks. Thank people for publishing reviews – whether they leave a positive review or negative one. Assure resolution and offer a different venue for further discussion outside of the Internet (i.e. encourage the reviewer to call you so you can discuss the matter personally with him or her).

Read More About: Get 35 Best Ways to Respond to Guest Reviews

TIP: Sleep it off. Perhaps get a good night’s rest before tackling a negative review. This will help you focus with a clear mind.

  1. Not Maintaining Your Rooms and Hotel Facilities

A lot of hotels in the world are not haunted – they just look like they are haunted. Cobwebs on the ceilings. Suspicious stains on the carpet and linens. Pests running around. Gross bathrooms. These things are do make a hotel haunted but not in the spiritual or paranormal sense.

Good housekeeping is the bare minimum expectation from all of us in the hospitality industry. We may not have luxurious rooms and amenities, but we should at least keep our property clean, well-maintained and hygienic.

Reiterate among your entire team the important role they play in your hotel. Have stringent housekeeping protocols in place and ensure that there are quality assurance checkpoints in place to avoid getting yourself in a dirty situation – literally and figuratively.

  1. Untrained Staff

As a hotelier, you know what to do. You know what your vision is, what you want your hotel to be five years or 10 years down the road. You know what impression you want to make among your guests and how you want to be known in the hospitality industry.

You know all these things and more. The question is, does your staff know these things as well?

Untrained staff is one of the main reasons why several hotels all over the world crumble every year. If this is a war, your staff members are your front-liners and there is no way that you can win a battle if your staff are not trained properly. They are the ones who interact with your guests the most, who cater to their needs majority of the time. It’s important that you are all taking well-orchestrated steps toward a single direction – to deliver the best hotel experience possible to your guests.

Training Related: How to Boost Staff-Guests Engagement at Your Hotel

  1. Unprofessional or Rude Manager

When hotel guests are not happy about something, they turn to the hotel manager. Hotel managers play many important roles – consolers to irate guests, confidante of unhappy guests, shock absorbers of angry guests, problem solvers, and the list goes on and on.

This is why a rude hotel manager can ruin the reputation and the future of your property. When everything is in disarray? Who can your guests turn to and who will play the objective problem solver, if your hotel manager is oozing with rudeness? Plus, if the hotel manager is rude, you can’t expect the other hotel staff to have a service-oriented mindset. If a hotel manager is rude, guests can’t expect that their best interests will be prioritized.

Be careful when hiring a hotel manager. Make sure that he is cordial, warm, friendly and always put the welfare of the guests among other things. After all, you’re in the hospitality industry and rudeness should have no room in hospitality.

Your hotel may not be haunted by restless spirits, but if it’s haunted by the five things we listed above, you’re definitely going to scare potential guests away. Make sure to rid your hotel of these five hospitality ghouls if you don’t want your hotel to be an empty ghost town.

– Staff at SmartGuests.com – Hospitality Marketing and Engagement Tools

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Image credit: http://gamingshogun.com/

Rupesh Patel

Rupesh Patel, hotelier and founder at SmartGuests.com, a U.S.-based Hospitality and Review Tools company that helps hotels increase revenues and occupancy, by boosting their online reviews and reputation. His proven system has not only improved his own hotels, but have helped hundreds of other hotels (large and small) get an advantage over their competition. He regularly shares his passion for entrepreneurship, customer service and marketing on numerous industry sites, social media and blogs.

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