Role of e-WOM in Hospitality Market Pricing

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2017
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Publishing House of the University of Economics in Katowice
Abstract

Aim/purpose - Online assessments are one of the main factors determining a customer's choice of accommodation. This article examines their relationship to prices in the low and high season in Cracow's hospitality market. The question of which attributes in hotel ratings explain the change in price levels was investigated. Design/methodology/approach - The inference was based on ratings and hotel room offers published on the Booking.com platform. Data were collected and estimated for the representative number of 97 hotels in Cracow. Regression analysis was then used to estimate the model. Findings - The results of the analysis showed that price levels for the high and low seasons are correlated with ratings for comfort and location. It is more precise to use these variables as an explanation for prices in the high season. Guests' perceptions of comfort and location are combined with other hotel features. Research implications/limitations - The study showed which of the hotel parameters should be enhanced when rationally increasing price levels. The limitations of the study are that it covered only one Polish city, collected data from a single website, and omitted other variables to explain the prices of hotel rooms. Originality/value/contribution - This is one of the first papers to examine the correlation between electronic consumer ratings and price levels in the Polish hospitality market and one of few investigations based on the role of e-WOM for the pricing of all objects in the sector, not just for a specific category of hotels. Keywords: consumer ratings, e-WOM, hospitality market, online reviews, pricing.

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Keywords
word of mouth (WOM), consumer ratings, e-WOM, hospitality market, online reviews, pricing.
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