On this blog, I talk a lot about what to do to optimize your listing, but today I'm going to talk about the five awesome benefits after you're optimized.
As a vacation rental homeowner myself for over five years, I would say that I truly started to notice these benefits about a year or so after being completely optimized.
You may be optimized today and not seeing all of these benefits, but a lot of times it just takes a little bit of time for those to really come through.
Let's first cover what I mean by an optimized listing. An optimized listing refers to a listing that has been carefully crafted to appeal to the ideal guest. It's one that comes to the top of the search results and it really stands out in the market so that it gets the click. Once someone has clicked on it it has a really great description and it has everything needed to convert that click into a booking.
Once you have gone through this process, then you can really start to uncover some of the awesome benefits that come from that. Let's dive into the five awesome benefits.
Benefit #1: Increased revenue
This one may be one of the more obvious benefits. But of course, when your listing is optimized then it's going to draw in more booking which means more rental income in your pocket. That is the number one benefit that you should notice right away.
Benefit #2: Higher-quality reservations
Once you're vacation rental is optimized, you may notice that you start to get longer bookings, so maybe those you're able to book your peak season in week-long increments instead of filling out your calendar with two nights here and three nights there.
That's definitely one that we saw firsthand and it resulted in bookings that happen more in advance and it resulted in bookings that happen more in advance so we have more security upfront.
Benefit #3: Your listing will start to run on autopilot
In the beginning you're doing a lot of tweaking and adjusting to make sure that your listing is going to appeal to your ideal guest and convert them.
But once you've kind of gotten through that and you know what works, it really starts to run on autopilot. You can have instant-booking on in a lot of cases and you'll just start to see the bookings roll in, and as long as you've got some automated messaging or you're utilizing templates, then you really shouldn't have to do too much work week-to-week, to really manage the online side of everything.
That was definitely another benefit that we noticed about a year in is that the time spent managing the bookings the time spent managing the bookings and inquiries and reservations decreased dramatically after it was more optimized, and kind of running on autopilot.
Benefit #4: Ripple effect
Benefit #4 is what I'm referring to as the ripple effect. I had started noticing a couple years after being fully optimized in really, really building our review count that we were starting to attract the guests that were more flexible on their dates and just kind of looking at what the top homes in the market were.
That's when I noticed we were getting a lot of the guests that had some open travel dates and they really just wanted to stay with one of the more highly-reviewed homes in the area, and ours is one of those homes.
They know they can book with peace of mind and security because we have the social proof there and all of the great reviews that really helps tell them that this is a phenomenal choice for the area.
I really have noticed that through this ripple effect the off-seasons are significantly easier to book the off-seasons are significantly easier to book than they used to be. It used to be next to impossible for us to book It used to be next to impossible for us to book something in January or February.
We're in the middle of Missouri and not a lot of people travel during the winter, so there aren't too many reservations to really obtain. But now that we're optimized, we are getting reservations in even the hardest of months. So that's what I'm kind of referring to as the ripple effect and this one takes a little bit longer to really see, I'd say we probably saw this one a couple years in but it's really nice to get these surprise bookings in the middle of the winter.
Benefit #5: Community over Competition
This one was a really cool and unexpected benefit for us for sure. So what we noticed once we were optimized and coming to the top of the listing results in our market and coming to the top of the listing results in our market is that we were also having a lot of homeowners reach out to us, and really ask us questions about what were we doing to get that kind of visibility.
It just created this awesome community where instead of kind of protecting the secrets and not sharing it, I really used that as an opportunity to educate the homeowners in our area of what they could do to improve their listing as well. And it's created this great network where we work together.
If one of us gets an inquiry and we can't accommodate them, then we have this network of other people that we know, and we know that we can strongly recommend their place as well. We work with each other and help each other out to fill each other's calendars.
That was one was definitely a surprising benefit and I'd be curious to hear in the comments - have noticed this community in your area as well?
So those are the top five benefits that we have seen with our optimized vacation rental listing.
We have increased revenue, higher-quality reservations, it runs on autopilot, there is a ripple effect, and there's community over competition.
If you're still in the process of getting your listing optimized, I have the perfect resource for you.
It's called The Vacation Rental Marketing Roadmap, and it will be your guide of the most important areas that you should focus on and the most common mistakes that I have seen when rental homeowners are first getting started.
Be sure to grab your free marketing guide here!