Once you’ve opted into travel websites, such as Booking.com, LateRooms and Expedia, you’ll probably boost your bookings – but now you need to make sure you stand out against the competition!
Your online property profile is like your shop window and you need to influence guests to book with you over your competitors. So how do you do that?
1. It’s all about your photos
Photos are the most important thing when it comes to your online presence. In fact, a study we conducted showed us that 82% of potential guests are put off by bad photography and 1 in 3 people think poor photos mean poor service.
What you need photos of:
- At least 20 high definition photos of your property.
- 4 photos of each room type including a bathroom.
- Photos of everything – including rooms, building, common areas, breakfast room and facilities.
- If you have a sea view, show a photo to capture attention rather than words.
What to consider before taking a photo:
- Take your photos in the daytime when there is good natural light.
- Make sure you can’t see any people in the pictures, like in a mirror’s reflection.
- Ensure that the rooms are clean and tidy.
- Double check that all windows and mirror are cleaned.
- Play with your camera’s settings, for example, if you’re in a room that has little natural light, you should open the ISO.
- A standard camera can hold hundreds of images so take lots of photos and use your best 20.
- Experiment with different angles and settings.
- Remember to have high definition images so they look great on any screen size.
- Make sure you keep the photos relevant – arty photos add no value to the guests’ search.
For more advice on taking quality photos, read our guide.
2. Using the right words
It’s not just good images that capture potential guests’ attention – it’s using the right words too! Did you know that you only have 3.4 seconds to capture a guest’s attention? Here’s how you can capture their attention in that time:
- Showcase your higher quality rooms by calling them ‘executive,’ ‘superior’ or ‘luxury.’
- Show the location of your rooms by calling them ‘sea view,’ ‘garden view,’ ‘ground floor’ or ‘balcony.’
- Know what adds value to a room; is it location, positioning, view, size or facilities? This will increase the value of the room.
It’s nice to have individual names for each of your rooms, however, when listing them with the travel websites, it can make the choice available to guests a little complicated – they may not be able to see what the differences actually are when searching online. This is why you should group rooms of the same category together and standardise their names like ‘Single’, ‘Double’, ‘Triple’ or ‘Family’ rooms. You can then add extra detail as needed to differentiate between the room types such as:
- Highlighting different standards of the rooms by prefixing them with levels of quality such as executive, superior or luxury.
- Promoting the location of your rooms by naming them with an extra level of detail such as sea view, garden view and balcony.
The advantages of this approach are:
- Your room types will be easily translated and understood when displaying online to global websites in over 30 different languages. People are much more interested in the bed type, the size of the room and the facilities offered.
- Having fewer room types available makes it simpler for potential guests to find and choose the type of room they are looking for
- When your rooms are offered with more general descriptions you have the flexibility to manage your diary, your way!
If people are not allocated into a specific room, you can move them before arrival and condense bookings back to back into certain rooms. This helps maximise your occupancy and length of stays available.
For your convenience, this kind of strategy can also make operational tasks easier, such as planning your cleaning and maintenance schedules and managing wear and tear on your rooms.
You can also move people into rooms that you’d prefer them to be in to maximise revenue per available room, where you might be comfortable offering discounts.
3. Showcasing your USPs
Make sure you stand out from your competition by showcasing everything that is available when they stay with you!
- Meal Options: what breakfast and dinner options do you serve?
- Facilities: do you have a bar, restaurant or parking?
- Things to see: what places are there to visit nearby?
- Things to try: maybe you have local crafts or foods to sample?
- Things to do: are there sports events, shows or gigs in the local area?
- Things to buy: any nearby shopping available?
- Where to go: local restaurants and pubs are a great addition here.
- The story: here is a great chance for the guest to understand you a little better. For example: If your B&B’s building has an interesting history, a unique location or some other interesting snippet!
- With only a small amount of time to impress your potential guest on a travel website listing, you should keep your information sharp and informative with great, high-quality images!
Make sure to include every free service or facility a guest gets that is included in the price they pay. The top services to highlight, if you offer them, are:
- Free Parking
- Free Wifi
- Free Breakfast
The important thing to remember is that on a travel website listing, you only have a short amount of time to impress and influence the guest before they move onto another property listing. By keeping your information sharp, informative and to the point, having great high-quality images and listing all your facilities and amenities, your potential guests will have no reason to look elsewhere.
Book a demo to find out how eviivo could help you!