The demand for vacation rentals is at an all-time high. You may have even experienced the rewards of this spike, seeing higher revenue and occupancy rates than in previous years.
This surge in demand allows vacation rental managers to review their portfolios and ensure that every guest gets the most out of their experience, from booking to check-out.
Put Effort into a Marketing Strategy
The first step in optimizing your vacation rental portfolio is to get your listings in front of as many potential guests as possible. Putting time and effort into your marketing will help grow your business by attracting new guests and encouraging previous ones to return.
- Make sure your website is user-friendly and rich in SEO keywords. Get specific and use a few variations to capture more search results (e.g., if you’re already using ‘cabin,’ consider adding ‘chalet’ in a few places to widen your search options).
- Check that photos on your website include SEO-rich captions and alt text. It will help guests find you by giving more breadcrumbs for the search engines to follow.
- Use social media to create a buzz with beautiful lifestyle images of your properties. Encourage guests to take pictures and tag you for a little extra boost.Spend time building a nurture track for new and returning guests, delivering content-rich and relevant emails to each audience.
Optimize Your Listings
Each property listing needs to be optimized as much as possible to get the most out of your entire vacation rental portfolio.
- Give your property a memorable name. Besides adding to your brand identity, property names are a helpful way for guests to search for the rental to book in the future. It also helps if many of your rentals, like condos or townhomes, look the same or share the same address.
- Use high-resolution photos. The photos of your property are the first hook for potential guests, so you want them to present your property’s best side. Order the photos in a natural progression through the house, highlight the best features up front, and use the nicest as the cover photo.
- Your property description is supportive marketing alongside the photos. It should be informative, concise, and encourage guests to book the property. Use SEO best practices to make the description keyword-rich, and avoid anything that might turn a guest off, like house rules.
- Restrictive practices like minimum or maximum stays, set rates, outrageous fees, or adult-only restrictions can limit the audience who may book your property.
- Make sure your booking process is as straightforward as possible, and utilize tools like Instant Book or the like to get guests booking immediately.
Use OTAs Strategically
Using OTAs like Airbnb or booking.com can be a double-edged sword. They can increase the exposure of your short-term rentals, but they can also be quite expensive and detract from direct bookings on your brand’s website. But if you use them consciously, these third-party listing sites can help optimize your vacation rental portfolio.
- It’s generally good practice to list your vacation rental portfolio on as many listing sites as possible. But this can be cost-prohibitive to some. Consider analyzing which third-party site brings in the most business and focusing on just those channels.
- Additionally, you could use third-party sites only for new properties, advertise them there for the first six months, and then “retire” them to a more cost-efficient listing site.
Make Each Property as Nice as Possible
If you’re looking to earn more from your entire vacation rental portfolio, your first step is to ensure that every one of your properties is in tip-top shape. While a complete overhaul isn’t always possible, even minor updates can make a huge difference.
- Take a look at your competition. What amenities are they offering that you aren’t? And how much are they charging for properties with additional amenities like a private hot tub or pet-friendly accommodations?
- Encourage your vacation rental homeowners to budget revenue for updates and maintenance.
- Go over guest reviews. Is there something that more than one guest has pointed out? If there are multiple complaints about mattresses, water pressure, or a particular appliance, then those are the updates to focus on.
- When was the last time you updated the property’s bedding, the entryway rug, or the curtains? While this is the smallest change you can make, it can make a huge difference.
- Consider updating your properties with Smart home technology, like keyless entry, voice-activated assistance, Smart thermostats, and tablets with rental and area information.
Optimizing your vacation rental portfolio is a huge task, and you deserve a PMS system that can keep up. LiveRez goes beyond standard vacation rental management software by putting all your essential functions into one tool: accounting, booking, operations, CRM, and more. Make the most out of your portfolio without straining your resources.