How to get more bookings from the channels you advertise on

You’ve listened to the experts and added your self-catering properties to the big booking websites like Airbnb, and HomeAway – but are you getting the results you’d hoped for?

If the channels you advertise on aren’t getting you more bookings, don’t despair. Just a few little tweaks and attention to detail makes all the difference. Follow these steps to to make your listings go from average to exceptional (the principles are the same for all the channels).

1. Be specific

Make your listing content as comprehensive as possible. Owner listings typically out-perform those added by agencies because of attention to detail. Tick every amenity that applies to your holiday rental, don’t miss anything out. If there is a box you can tick, make sure you do. It’s worth setting a reminder to check your settings regularly to see if the channel has added any new ones since you initially set your property up.

2. List all of your properties

The major players know how many properties you have in your portfolio, and owners and companies that add them all to their channel rank higher.

3. Add your prices way in advance

We say it again and again, because this is crucial. Make sure you add your prices at least 12-18 months in advance. Don’t get too hung up about what you should be charging, the further ahead you set your prices, the more flexible you can be. Set them high to start with, then adjust them as those dates get closer.  The worst that could happen is that someone books and pays a premium price.

4. Respond quickly

Having a good record for prompt resonses will help your property appear higher in the search. Eg. HomeAway states that to be classed as excellent you must respond to an enquiry within 15 minutes .

5. Don’t cancel!

Canceling bookings has a detrimental affect on your listings. Aim to have a cancellation rate that is lower than 10% to help your holiday rentals’ performance on the booking channels. In an ideal world it would be 0%.

6. Ask guests to review their stay

As well as building trust and providing proof, the number of reviews your holiday rental has affects where it appears in searches. Use auto emails in your SuperControl account to send guests review requests on departure.

Give these a go and you will see results. Remember, advertising on the major booking websites gets your self-catering properties seen by a much wider audience. Once you have secured bookings via the channel you can build relationships with the guests, and stay in touch to encourage them to return – booking direct with you next time. Good luck!