To advertise a holiday rental property successfully online, it’s good to start with a clear strategy and adequate funding, then create an online advert that is informative and stands out from the crowd.
Decide on Your Holiday Property Advertising Strategy
First, decide who is your market. Is your property best for families, groups, couples or adults only? This may depend not only on the accommodation but also on what type of holiday your location offers? Also, will you welcome pets and do you have facilities for disabled people?
Next, set pricing. Research prices in your area – and compare like with like in terms of space, facilities and standard of accommodation. Try to step back and take an honest, independent view or get an objective second opinion.
Don’t forget to budget for your advertising. Set a realistic figure that includes any photography costs, hosting of your listing over the long term, contingencies for special offers and extra advertising and the cost of phone calls to customers.
Creating your Holiday Property Advert
For your listing, you need a heading and description of your property, photographs and perhaps a video, a booking calendar with prices, local information, travel details and map, activities and attractions. Sounds like a lot - but this is the crucial part to get right. Work on your presentation in advance and then take your time and get as much help as you need to make it really good.
Of course, you have a duty to be honest throughout - but it’s good business to catch the eye with lyrical phrases and buzzwords for your headings. Show and tell browsers what a holiday at your place will offer. Give as much detail as possible and make it as friendly and personal as necessary to demonstrate your level of commitment and service.
Use good quality digital photographs to show your property’s character and unique selling points. The main photograph is the pivotal eye-catcher and it’s good to show a really attractive shot of the house exterior. Other photos should show the garden with outdoor living and swimming pool if appropriate, interiors - especially living room, kitchen and bedrooms - activities, the local area and colourful events.
Consider adding video, too. At French Connections, we’re proud to be first in our market to offer a video package and browsers’ search option because we know that video sells. Quick booking decisions are often influenced by watching the video because it gives a complete feel of the property.”
When you think you’ve finished your listing details, get objective feedback from someone who knows the property and someone who has never seen it. They are more detached than you and might just spot important omissions or missed opportunities.
Managing your Holiday Rental Advertising Campaign
When your listing has gone live, it’s essential to monitor enquiries to avoid missing bookings. Holidaymakers need a reply to email enquiries within 24 hours and if you can’t answer fully in writing, then pick up the phone and call them to discuss. It could clinch the booking. If you’re away from your email, you can get text alerts or log into the owner’s area to pick up enquiries.
How many bookings can you expect? Ideally you want to be busy from May to September and also do some business in the ‘shoulder’ months of March-April and October-November, or even to have guests all year round. There will almost certainly be annual variations – and not only due to market conditions. Sometimes one owner inexplicably has a bad year and someone else does well. The next year, the situation might be reversed. The bottom line is to be in this for the long haul.