Here are 10 tips for how and where to advertise your holiday accommodation, these tips will be helpful for any holiday let owners running their own self-catered accommodation. In today’s competitive holiday letting market its vital to use all the tools that are available to boost bookings.
The use of social media in today’s world is essential in connecting with guests of all ages from all around the world. The most used social media platforms that suit the holiday letting industry are Facebook and Instagram. It’s best not to use to many platforms and if you don’t have much spare time, just pick one and put all your time into doing it well. Your posts should include pictures and information on your property’s features, what the local area is like, things to do and restaurants that are nearby.
Having a modern website with a booking platform integrated is the only way to get direct bookings without paying third party companies any commission for getting you bookings. There are some free booking platforms you can use such as Freetobook and if you need more professional features paid versions are available too. It is also very important your website is mobile friendly in fact 71% of the visitors to Porth Holidays website over the last 6 months have been from users on mobiles, make sure all photos and information is clearly set out and it is super easy to book your accommodation through a mobile. You can build a modern template website quickly and at low cost by using website builders like Wix or go bespoke and have a tailored website made by a professional exactly how you want it, we recommend Pure Cornish Design they made our Porth Holidays website you are currently visiting, it is also important to have a strong SEO stragety (search engine optimisation) this means using the correct keywords on your website to show in Google search results, we have temaed up with Smart Seo Cornwall for some help and advice with SEO.
Think about who your target audience is and write for them for example if your holiday home is a 4-bedroom house close to a beach your main target audience is families looking for beach holidays, explain in detail how close the beach is and what amenities are they, also what other attractions are close by that would be great for kids? If you accept dogs where are the closest dog friendly beaches and is there a dog ban at any point in the year? If your writing skills aren’t the best or you just don’t have the time don’t worry, you can easily hire a content writer from the digital services website fiverr. Its low cost and the websites freelance creators can offer many other digital services like website building, photo editing, voice overs.
There are a few options when using paid advertising, you can boost posts on Facebook and Instagram. You can also add your property to listing sites which promote direct bookings, these usually cost around £250 per year for just a property profile. Porth Holidays not only offer comprehensive holiday let management, but also offer the exciting opportunity for holiday let owners to simply advertise with us for less than £2 a week! This service is specifically designed to help property owners that are happy running their own self-catering accommodation in Cornwall get more direct bookings. Find out more on our Advertise with us page.
Pricing your holiday let
Setting the correct pricing for your holiday home is important but you should always remain flexible as the market can change throughout the year, and it usually does! For example if 5 new properties come on the market in your local area that are very similar to yours and all of them have lower pricing you may find a drop in bookings if you don’t adjust to the new local competition – However if you feel you have more features and are confident your pricing is correct and gives good value, it’s worth seeing how the next couple of months go and monitor the bookings, are their calendars filling up with more bookings than yours? You should also think about discounts for long stays, as they are becoming more popular amongst holidaymakers. Read our blog on 10 features to guarantee more bookings
Great photos & videos
Having great photos & videos showing off your holiday accommodation is essential in today’s increasingly competitive holiday letting market, help potential guests visualise the spaces and exactly what it would be like to stay in your property, achieve this with high quality photos & videos - We have a blog sharing the photography tips and tricks we use when photographing new properties getting added to our portfolio of self-catered accommodation in Cornwall. Read our holiday letting photography guide.
Awards boost bookings
If you holiday accommodation is high quality, follows all the current regulations and is a unique place to be, you should think about entering it for a tourism award or certificate, for example a Visit England award for excellence or enter the Cornwall Tourism awards.
Reviews & feedback for your holiday home
The best marketing for your property is having multiple glowing guests reviews, it is the biggest deciding factor on if a potential guest will book your property or not! Remember constructive criticism should not be taken to heart and be looked at positively, if there are small ways to improve your accommodation that you haven't thought of guests will let you know in the reviews or private feedback, take note and make the improvements, even if its small things like, more cutlery, a stiff door handle or scuffs on the paintwork. Respond to all good and bad reviews and if you think it’s unfair explain why, anyone reading the reviews can usually tell if the previous guests where being unreasonable and it won’t put them off. Tip: If you do get an extremely harsh review wait 24hours before composing your reply, often replies in angry will not come across very well and make the situation look worse.
List with other holiday booking platforms
To gain maximum exposure get your property listed on a few of the biggest third-party booking platforms such as, Airbnb, Booking.com or VRBO. Using these services can come at a cost, up to 20% plus VAT of your booking value, many will find this acceptable due to the number of extra bookings and exposure being on these booking platforms brings. These big companies have huge marketing budgets which gives you a high chance of getting extra bookings, which is why they can charge a lot of commission. Big name brand invest huge amounts of money in search engine optimisation which is why having your property listed with them means you'll have the best chance of being seen, for help and advice with SEO just to to our friends at Smart SEO Cornwall to get a boost in rankings!
Join a holiday letting agency
This option suits owners who don’t live in the area their holiday let is located or don’t have the time or knowledge to put into promoting and maintaining there holiday accommodation and all its visitors, join a holiday letting agency who can take care of everything in the above list for you. Here at Porth Holidays we offer low commission comprehensive management for holiday lets in West Cornwall, find out more on our Join us page.
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