Repeat business is good for every industry, and the investor property industry is no exception. When it comes to holiday rentals, loyalty is everything. Many guests feel more comfortable staying somewhere that they have already stayed at before, compared to trying somewhere completely new. This makes a lot of sense. Most of us feel more comfortable when we know what to expect.
Repeat bookings include travellers from a wide range of travel markets. Business travellers who frequently fly in to any given destination tend to choose a familiar accommodation option, while seasonal leisure travellers plan annual holidays to a holiday home that they know will offer everything they need during their stay. Simply put, guests tend to reward accommodation venues that provide the perfect combination of location, service and quality with ongoing loyalty. What does this mean for your short term rental investment however, and how can you increase your guest loyalty to encourage repeat bookings? Let’s take a look.
Getting Repeat Bookings For Your Investor Property
As we briefly mentioned above, the things that factor in the most for repeat investor property bookings are location, service and quality. In a city such as Cape Town, location is everything. Top areas such as Camps Bay and the CBD will almost always see a higher rate of repeat bookings. While you can’t do much about your location (unless you are in the buying stage of your investment strategy), you can increase your booking loyalty by focusing on service and quality. Some of the ways that investor property owners can fine-tune their offering include the following:
- Make the right impression the first time around. This sounds obvious, but a surprising number of holiday rentals fail to make that all-important first impression memorable. Or, they may make a memorable impression… for all the wrong reasons. If you are not able to wow your guests the first time around, you will not likely have a chance to wow them a second time. This should not mean going over and beyond the call of duty, although that is always appreciated. It simply means that you need to ensure that your guests are given the best level of service possible, from the moment they send the initial enquiry, to the moment they check out. One way to ensure that you provide your guests with a stellar experience from the very start is to work with a dedicated short term rental manager. This will give you the benefit not only of guest services, bookings management and marketing, but also day to day management to ensure that your property stays clean and organised at all times.
- Deliver a consistent level of excellence. The keyword here is consistent. If you deliver a world-class experience to one guest, and then a sub-par experience to the next, you will never have the chance to develop a strong holiday rental reputation. If, on the other hand, you have a commitment to service excellent that is uniform and reliable, your guests will never have to wonder what to expect when making a booking at your establishment.
- Provide value added services. Another way to foster loyalty is to provide value added services to your guests. Value added services take an average stay to an unforgettable stay. How can you help make each guest’s stay as pleasant as possible? Perhaps you can assist with full guest concierge services. Maybe you can present them with a tailored city guide. You could plan tours that are personalised according to your guests’ interests. You could offer cots or cribs, or babysitting services.
- Offer special deals for returning guests. What are you doing to remarket to your guests? Whether you offer a special discount for repeat bookings, or some other form of reward, it can be useful to offer incentive for repeat guests. Yet again, this is why it can be useful to work with a professional investor property manager who can market and manage your property proactively.
- Keep guests updated after their holiday. On a similar note, what are you doing to keep guests in the loop after their holiday has ended? Are you keeping your location (and property) top of mind? Or are those guests gone, never to be heard from again? A newsletter or even a simple blog, Facebook page or mailer can do wonders for keeping guests updated on news relating to your city. That way, when the time comes for them to travel again, they won’t have to think too hard about where they want to stay.
Interested in learning more about how to take your investor property to the next level? Contact Totalstay today to arrange a free evaluation of your property, and let us show you what you can expect from your investment returns.