As a rental property manager or landlord, you believe that your vacation rental property has a lot to offer. It might even be the best vacation rental property in the neighborhood. But how do you get other people to believe this as well? It’s all about word of mouth.
The best way to get your vacation rental property noticed in a very competitive market is to have other people speak highly of your vacation rental property. Aside from the usual marketing channels, you have to create a buzz around your vacation rental property by getting other people to spread the word. Get people to influence other people’s perspectives by getting outstanding reviews.
Why are reviews so important?
Reviews are a good way for people to gauge if a product or a service is worth getting. There is a phenomenon called buyers’ remorse. It is the sense of regret after having made a purchase. People want to avoid having buyers’ remorse, so they check out what other people (people who have already bought or got the service) have to say BEFORE they buy. If you still doubt the power of a good review, here are some statistics to think about1:
● Nearly 95% of shoppers read online reviews before making a purchase (Spiegel Research Center, 2017)
● 94% of customers read online reviews (Fan and Fuel, 2016)
● 93% of local consumers use reviews to determine if a local business is good or bad (BrightLocal, 2017)
● 72% of customers don’t take action until they have read reviews (Testimonial Engine)
● 92% of B2B buyers are more likely to purchase after reading a trusted review (G2 and Heinz Marketing, 2017)
● Displaying reviews can increase conversion rates by 270% (Spiegel Research Center, 2017)
Outstanding customer service is still the best way to get outstanding reviews
The sure shot way to get outstanding, five-star reviews is, of course, to provide outstanding, five-star service. You have to anticipate your customer’s needs and be able to go above and beyond that. For example, if your vacation rental property has a pool, you can provide pool toys for kids and have summer hats for the adults. You can put together a welcome basket that could include a small print out of the best tourist spots or some historical info about where the property is situated. Even chocolates or mints on the pillow will make any guest feel welcome. Small (or big) personalized touches will be greatly appreciated, especially by guests who are coming from a long trip, and will increase your chances of getting outstanding reviews.
Human interaction is a must
With the advent of technology, guests can stay at a vacation rental property end-to-end without even having to meet the owner, property manager, or landlord. They can book the stay online, send the payment via bank transfer, collect the key card and leave the property – all without having any human interaction. While this makes the process seamless and modern, it takes away the human touch. The big question is how will they leave a -five-star review if they haven’t even seen the property manager or owner? To your guests, it will feel as if they were just reviewing the property and not the whole experience. So, as a vacation rental property manager and/or owner, you should make sure that you get to meet and greet your guests. Don’t underestimate the good impression that a little chit chat can make.
Don’t be shy to ask for feedback
If you want to get outstanding, five-star reviews, ask for it! Most people only give reviews for excellent or very poor service. There is a great number of guests who have an in-between experience – pleasant but not outstanding. This is your chance to ask them to consider leaving a review. Do it nicely. In this conversation, you can actually influence the guest a bit. Ask them what about the stay is memorable and what did they enjoy? This is also a chance to thank them for choosing your vacation rental property and to invite them to return and recommend the property to friends and family. Here’s a tip: get reviews from guests who you know for sure are very satisfied with their stay.
Ask where you can improve
And while you’re at it, ask your guests where you can improve. This is a chance for you to take and consider any suggestions that can help improve your vacation rental property. Let your guests know that their opinion matters to you. Offer other avenues for complaints such as via email, a phone number or a comment card. You don’t want those to be posted online for all to see – so it’s best to have offline avenues available for guests to provide feedback and itemize issues that need improvement.
Accept feedback constructively
No one is perfect, and there is no such thing as a perfect vacation rental property. You will get complaints – some ridiculous, some are perfectly reasonable. Address all of them equally in a professional manner. There will also be sincere suggestions from guests for areas to improve on. Treat this information as gold. This is where you will discover how you can improve your services and how you can improve your vacation rental property.
Do not push for a good review. Be polite and ask humbly for a review. Let your guests know that their good word will be helping you grow and improve your business. Let them know that you appreciate if they can recommend your vacation rental property to others. Be sincere in helping them so they can help you.
David Property Management knows how hard it can be to rise above the noise and get your vacation rental property listing noticed. This is a very competitive market after all and there are multiple players in the field. We know how hard you are working to earn those gold-star reviews and we want to help. Contact us today to learn how we can help you manage your vacation rental property.
Davis Property Management
At Davis Property Management, we provide fast, friendly, and professional service tailored to your individual property management needs.