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Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

Arcata, California
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1 post
34 reviews
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Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

I am an avid TripAdvisor user, but I do not understand why TripAdvisor set up its category rankings not to include a "good" category. It is frustrating to me as a user and reviewer not to be able to give establishments a ranking in between an "Average" ranking and a "Very Good" ranking. It does not make any sense to me to have a "Terrible" and "Poor" categories because if an establishment has multiple below average reviews that is enough to help people's decision making process. Someone is not going to go to a place because in is poor vs terrible. But what would help in choosing one place over the other is a "good" ranking vs a "very good" to help sort out more places properly.

Please help me understand the current ranking system. Thank you.

Melbourne, Australia
Destination Expert
for Philippines, Kuala Lumpur
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23,737 posts
1,719 reviews
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1. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

This has been discussed before and I am in complete agreement with you.

Sometimes I have the felt a place is worth only a 3.5 star category but I need to give a 3 or 4 ranking. So I need to rank it lower than it deserved or higher than it deserved.

Tommo

Cabarete, Dominican...
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for Cabarete
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43,383 posts
261 reviews
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2. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

Welcome to the Forums! I don't believe there is any explanation in the Help Center as to what each rating mean. It's just a scale of one to five, and instead of choosing good for the middle point, TA chose to use 'average'.

You just need to think of the ratings in a scale of 1 to 5, disregarding their labels. Poor and terrible are both bad. Very good and Excellent, are both great. Average is just whatever is in the middle, neither poor nor very good. You can call it good if it fits you.

This is a subject that has been discussed many times on this forum. TripAdvisor is not going to be changing the rating scale because of the millions of reviews with ratings already on the site. But I so wish they would just remove the labels and leave it to each member to interpret the points in the scale as they wish, just leaving a label for 1 and 5.

Silvia

3. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

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Calgary, Canada
Destination Expert
for Calgary
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86 reviews
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4. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

I'm afraid some kind of label is needed, or some people will assume 1 is "best" and 5 is "worst".

I'd love to see 5 labelled as "significantly exceeded expectations for this type of hotel/restaurant/attraction" and 1 labelled "fell far short of expectations for this type of hotel/restaurant/attraction". But that's far too lengthy!

Cabarete, Dominican...
Destination Expert
for Cabarete
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261 reviews
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5. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

It may be too lengthy but I honestly love your idea, C_W.

Silvia

Pittsburgh...
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5,957 posts
76 reviews
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6. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

5-Superior (by definition, superior to everything else, best experience possible)

4-Excellent (Great! But, not the cream of the crop)

3-Good/Average (hey, it's good)

2-Fair/Below average (acceptable, but only just so)

1-Poor (it ain't pretty)

Chester, United...
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60,405 posts
69 reviews
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7. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

With so many reviews already scored using the existing system I cannot see TA altering it any time soon

To me it works as I just disregard the labels for 2/3/4

Hampshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Eastleigh, Winchester
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4,917 posts
106 reviews
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8. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

Just need Smiley face - Sad face icons with no need for text labels

Pittsburgh...
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5,957 posts
76 reviews
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9. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

All kidding aside, if we're going to have text descriptors assigned to ratings, then I think they should mean something. If they truly don't mean anything, then they need to go away completely. Unless someone has come to this specific forum (lets face it, most members don't) and has read all the threads on this topic, they're not taking the advice to just think of it as a 1 through 5 and be done with it. They see the descriptor, and try to assign a rating that matches the experience as described.

Here's the biggest question. Can an experience be "below average," but not "poor"? I say, yes, it can. What's a "below average" grade in school? A "D", right? Unless you're in grad school, a D is passing. It's the lowest "acceptable" grade for the course. It isn't good, it's below "average", but not "poor" enough to fail.

I don't buy this idea that the rating system can't be improved because ratings have already been assigned under the old system. That's like telling Major League Baseball that they can't have a 162-game regular season because it would mess up the statistics from when the season was only 154 games. Guess what? MLB didn't care about that. They made the season 162 games. Period. And they all count towards player/team/league statistics. To say that every past review would all of a sudden be invalidated because we made the descriptors a little better is, in my opinion, less than accurate.

Honest question, do we believe that changing the descriptors will somehow retroactively change the rankings in the popularity index? Why is it not possible to leave the current ratings as they stand, improve the descriptors, and move forward from that point?

Cabarete, Dominican...
Destination Expert
for Cabarete
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43,383 posts
261 reviews
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10. Re: Why does rankings not include a "good" category?

We still need a middle point, don't we? So what do we achieve if the scale is changed, say from 1-5 to 1-7? In my view, a larger scale would even cause more trouble for members to pick a rating--and don't mention what to label each point and the disagreements on that.

"To say that every past review would all of a sudden be invalidated because we made the descriptors a little better is, in my opinion, less than accurate"

No, I don't believe they will be invalidated because if you extend the scale, you need to reassign each previous rating to a new scale that still accurately reflects the reviewer's rating at the time of submission. The two extremes and the middle point can be reassigned a new value easily; not so with ratings of 2 and 4.

Silvia