Self-catering accommodation owners need to get savvy with their marketing to stand out in the eyes of discerning travellers. With so many options, it's not just a good idea - it's a must-do.
Digital platforms like Airbnb and Booking.com are big players, and there’s also a host of other platforms, like Lindmere, here to help get your property noticed. Creating compelling descriptions and awesome photos, and collecting positive reviews are key to getting those bookings.
But marketing isn't just about those third-party sites. Owners should also invest in their brand by building a snazzy, user-friendly website that shows off their place. Social media can help too, by reaching more people, showing off unique stuff, and targeting ads to the right audience.
With so many choices, marketing isn't just about getting bookings; it's about creating a brand that travellers love. Strategic marketing is the secret sauce that links a property's charm with the dreams of adventure-seeking travellers, ensuring long-term success in the ever-changing world of self-catering accommodations.
Elevate your website's Google ranking by establishing a dedicated reviews page - a centralised hub showcasing guest feedback. By consolidating reviews on your site, you create user-generated content that search engines value. Including links to popular platforms like Facebook, Google, and Trustpilot not only emphasises transparency but also encourages guests to leave reviews on platforms they trust. This user-centric approach enhances your site's visibility and fosters a sense of trust and authenticity, contributing to improved Google rankings and a stronger online presence.
Streamline guest interactions by integrating QR codes linked to your chosen review platform. QR codes, or Quick Response codes, act as a bridge between the physical and digital worlds. Placing these codes strategically within your property or promotional materials empowers guests to share their experiences effortlessly. Scanning the QR code takes them directly to your chosen review platform, simplifying the process and encouraging more guests to leave reviews conveniently.
Steer clear of depending solely on one review platform. Travellers consult multiple sources for insights before making booking decisions. Getting your name out there on different platforms like Google, TripAdvisor, Booking.com, Facebook, and Trustpilot is a smart move. When you collect good reviews on these various sites, you reach more people and make different types of travellers happy. This multi-platform approach boosts the power of your reviews, making your place look even better and catching the eyes of potential guests on many different review sites.
Work with your web developer to add review scores to your website's layout. It not only makes your site look better but also gives visitors a quick way to see what others think.
Timing matters when you want reviews. Send an email to guests after they've left, but make sure you think they had a good time. This way, you catch their good feelings while they're still fresh, increasing the chances of a positive review.
Be smart about who you ask for reviews, especially if guests didn't have a great time. First, focus on fixing their problems and making them happy before you ask for feedback. Happy guests are, of course, more likely to say nice things.
Respond to all reviews, and do it quickly and professionally. It helps you connect with guests and boosts your property's ranking on Google. Google ranking affects how easily people find your website in search results, which can bring in more potential guests. When you engage with reviews, you also improve your search engine optimisation (SEO) by using relevant terms in your responses. This tells search engines that your content is valuable and important, making your property more visible and attractive to potential guests.
Responding to bad reviews underscores your commitment to a guest-centric approach. By openly engaging with feedback, positive or negative, you show that guest satisfaction is a priority. This level of transparency builds credibility and fosters trust with your audience.
Let guests know they can chat with you directly to discuss any concerns. This not only helps resolve conflicts but also shows that you care about understanding and fixing guest issues in a personal and considerate way.
Keep responding to reviews, whether they're good or bad. It shows that you're committed to making guests happy. Regularly engaging with reviews reinforces the idea that you value guest feedback and use it to improve the whole stay.
When you respond thoughtfully and proactively to unfair reviews, you can turn a tough situation into a chance to show how dedicated you are to guest happiness and constantly improving. This level of involvement doesn't just help with isolated negative moments but also builds trust and loyalty with your audience. Remember, it's not just about the reviews but how you respond that shapes how people see your self-catering spot.
Tackle Concerns Directly:
When you reply to negative reviews, especially ones that don't seem fair, it shows you're ready to deal with problems head-on. Say you understand the guest's experience, express your genuine regret for any issues, and explain what steps you're taking or plan to take to make things better. This proactive approach shows you're transparent and committed to constantly getting better.
Highlight the Good Changes:
In your response, make sure to talk about any positive changes you've made based on guest feedback. Showing that you're responsive not only turns a bad experience into a chance for improvement but also proves to potential guests that you take their concerns seriously.
To boost your self-catering spot's credibility, putting testimonials on your website is a wise move. It makes potential guests trust you more. But it's even better when you mix things up by getting testimonials from different places that UK travellers use. Here's a closer look at some of those spots:
Google Reviews: Adding Google Reviews to your site gives a direct link to one of the most popular search engines. People pay attention to Google Reviews, so it's a big deal for anyone looking for reliable opinions.
TripAdvisor: Lots of travellers check out TripAdvisor. When you feature testimonials from there on your site it shows that you're all about being open and honest because TripAdvisor is known for its detailed and unbiased reviews.
Booking.com: For people who like booking things online, reviews from Booking.com are really helpful. Having testimonials from this platform on your site shows that your place appeals to tech-savvy travellers.
Facebook Recommendations: Social media plays a big role in travel decisions. Using testimonials from Facebook Recommendations adds a personal touch and taps into the wide reach of this social platform.
Airbnb: If you list your place on Airbnb, including guest reviews from there shows you're all about meeting the expectations of guests who love the unique stuff and community vibe on Airbnb.
Trustpilot: Trustpilot is known for its focus on real consumer reviews. Adding Trustpilot reviews to your site shows you're serious about giving guests a trustworthy and awesome experience.
Putting testimonials from different places on your website gives a complete picture of the great experiences people have at your place. It builds trust and lets potential guests see you've got good vibes from several different sources. Remember, the more honest and diverse your testimonials are, the stronger the trust you build for your self-catering spot.
Mastering the art of review management is integral to transforming guest feedback into a powerful marketing tool. By strategically placing reviews on your website, using QR codes, diversifying review platforms, enhancing website schema, and engaging with guests consistently, you can create a compelling online presence for your self-catering accommodation.
Don't forget the power of testimonials on your site. If you're ready to take control of your property's success, get in touch to enquire about listing with Lindmere. Avoid paying 15-22% commission on every booking and join a platform designed to empower property owners.