TRIPADVISOR BUSINESS ADVANTAGE? 400 EUROS LESS IN POCKET...
TRIPADVISOR BUSINESS ADVANTAGE? 400 EUROS LESS IN POCKET...
Photo Source: Gaetano Sciacca
Well yes... we succumbed to the "system"! Despite our enormous concerns about it , at the end of the month of In August 2019, we were persuaded to shell out around 400 euros for the TripAdvisor Business Advantage package. What would we have liked to achieve? Visibility in the default ranking of TripAdvisor, that is the one relating to the quality / price ratio. Before entering into the contract, to the Business Development Sales Executive from whom we were contacted and subsequently also to the Senior Customer Success Executive, we explicitly expressed the sole need to have visibility in the default sort order. We were therefore told that the Business Advantage package would give us the opportunity to insert our own Special Offer that would allow us to be included in the ranking according to the quality/price ratio . Was that actually the case? No, because whoever pays more actually precedes us.
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How does it really work? In hindsight (and thinking about how many arancini we could have bought with 400 euros), I tried to better understand the mechanism. Despite the extremely favorable score given by the average of the reviews (currently 5 out of 5), to be among the first positions in that system, you must have entered into a contract with a certified partner of TripAdvisor, that is one of the many Online Travel Agency (for example Booking, Expedia, Hotels, Trivago). For those who are really white on the subject, these are intermediary multinational agencies to which the management of reservations for all or part of their accommodation is delegated, for certain periods, to which a commission (on average 15%) is owed for every booking was successful. This is what TripAdvisor calls CPC Campaign.
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The "problem" is that so far at Agricultural Camp Sophia we have never had the need to let others manage "our home". We have our website, we have our online booking system, "business" doesn't go so badly... What reason would we have to entrust the management of reservations for our bungalows to an OTA? No reason and instead many good reasons to continue to reserve the possibility to decide what we consider most appropriate on our structure and not having to give explanations to anyone if we decide to make, for example, a discount to a customer.
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Searching, for example, on Google ("incognito" mode) "camping Syracuse", in third position we find the ungrammatical link of TripAdvisor "The best 10 camping in Province of Syracuse in 2019 (with prices)". By clicking on it you will find yourself on the TripAdvisor page entitled "Camping a Provincia di Siracusa". The default ordering is according to the criterion of the relationship between quality and price. Our special offer (of which the novelty is that the price is no longer shown) is absolutely (and intentionally, to test if these 400 euros have been well spent) the most convenient. The score determined by the average of the reviews, by selecting the order for Traveler ranking, gives us, at the end of December 2019, the first place in the ranking. If mathematics is not an opinion, Agricultural Sophia, with a special offer lower than the prices proposed by the competitors, should not be in first place also in the sorting for Quality- price? And here the donkey falls ... Because the Agricultural Camp Sophia will always come after the structures that decide to join a certified partner of TripAdvisor. And pay 400 euros for the site link and the phone number on TripAdvisor (when the most immediate source for this information is the free Google...), choose the order of the photos or the "favorite review" (which among the 'other seems to me really a prank...), for a small company, in my humble opinion, it is almost equivalent to throwing money. I would like to point out the interesting opinion , from a few years ago but still currently, of the owners of the Preggio Organic Farm, on the usefulness of OTAs for a family-sized farm.
Text Source: Antonino Rampulla
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