While it’s no secret that many vacation rental owners advertise their properties on listing sites such as Airbnb and HomeAway, in order to really maximize your bookings and your renting potential, it’s a great idea to have your own business website too.
As the growing vacation rental market is set to be worth $194 billion by 2021, owners need to focus on the aspects that will keep them competitive.
These are the top ways that having a vacation rental website can really complement what you’re already doing on external portals.
1. Gain online credibility
One of the main advantages of having your own vacation rental website is being able to showcase your vacation home; however you like. What’s more, it will automatically improve your online credibility and trust with future guests. Travelers who find your property on a listing site, then look for your vacation rental name elsewhere will be brought directly to your website.
Plenty of potential guests now cross-search different sites for the best price, and also to make sure the vacation rental they’re viewing isn’t too good to be true! So having your own credible site will only help confirm that you’re the real deal.
2. Boost your brand
Defining your brand is the first step in learning how to market your property effectively. Everything from your domain name to your logo and the colors and copy of your website plays a role in how guests view and interact with your business.
Making your own branded website is not a hard or laborious task, but consistency is key. So, why not think about matching the colors of your interiors to your logo and brand identity? Or use your website to write content that’s appealing to guests and reveals your property’s personality. Guests trust brands (more than 200 million rely on Airbnb to book their accommodation) – so make yours count.
3. Promote direct bookings
The aim of the vacation rental game is to get bookings, right? So why not make the most of all the different avenues available to you and use listings sites to link back to your own website. When you’ve got your own website, you’ll benefit from reaching a different client base that want to find their rental home privately. Guests love the convenience of being able to book directly, especially when it means there are no additional, hidden fees.
If you already have your own site with WordPress, Wix or another provider, but it doesn’t yet support bookings, there are tools which can help enable online reservations. For example, Lodgify’s embeddable code snippet will transform your existing page into a fully functioning booking portal, complete with calendar availability and rates.
4. Centralize your vacation rentals
If you list your vacation rental on multiple channels like those already mentioned, it can sometimes be difficult to keep on top of your bookings across the different platforms. Not to mention the risk of double bookings!
A good vacation rental software will provide the solution to avoid this and any other confusion between your sites. A channel manager will take the hassle out of organizing your vacation rental listings – just synchronize your availability calendar with your software, and watch as your external listings are automatically updated across the board.
5. Show off your skills
Your own vacation rental website is the perfect place to showcase your best assets. For example, you could collate all your amazing guest reviews from other sites into a testimonials page. Or stand out in the ever-growing market by collecting digital badges. These are generally stickers which show where you’ve been mentioned (e.g. newspapers, online magazines, etc.) or they’re online certificates of accomplishment (like the ‘Superhost’ badge on Airbnb). It’s a no-frills formula really – the more badges you have, the more trustworthy your site is, and the more trustworthy your site is, the more bookings you’ll take!
Overall, having a professional vacation rental website can truly enhance your vacation rental business! Not only does it provide you with the freedom to advertise your property the way you want, it also gives you a URL to refer direct inquiries to and helps diversify your booking channels.
About the Author
Lodgify is an all-in-one vacation rental software solution that allows owners and managers to create a stunning website and accept online bookings instantly easily. Owners can enjoy managing all reservations from one place and seamless synchronization of property data with external booking channels.