Content analysis of TripAdvisor reviews on restaurants : a case study of Macau

S. Lei, Chun Hung Roberts Law

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


With the emergence of Web 2.0 and user-generated contents, the electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM) effects have become gigantic. Tourism and hospitality practitioners have been keeping an eye on eWOM to understand their firm's current position and competitive advantages. This study explored TripAdvisor, a consumer rating and review website, which reflects the dining experience in restaurants in Macau. English language online consumer reviews from TripAdvisor were selected and examined by content analysis and taxonomy. Simple frequency counts on the number of positive, negative and neutral comments were performed. 614 online reviews of 22 restaurants were carefully read. In cases of uncertainty or doubts in the written texts, a second person helped examine the questionable texts from an independent view so as to reduce personal biases. Empirical results showed that the overall customer satisfaction on the dining experience in Macau was positive. Interestingly, the expensive restaurants in Macau indicated a higher percentage of negative comments than the less expensive restaurants did. The content analysis revealed untapped stories and generally provided insights to service industry practitioners. For consumers, despite Macau's high living costs, one could still find good restaurants at reasonable prices.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-28
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of tourism
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Restaurant
  • Dining
  • TripAdvisor
  • Macau
  • Content analysis


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