Improve Guest Experience By Taking Their Advice
The Internet and smartphones are two driving forces that make the hospitality industry what it is today. They empower guests and hosts like you to connect and make memorable vacations possible.
Someone who understands this is Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky, who recently asked his Twitter followers what his platform should launch in 2022. Running a successful business is about knowing what your audience wants, and rather than beating around the bush, Chesky went straight to the source and then tweeted the top six (all in this blog).
Now that travelers have spoken, Modern Innkeeper described how you can continue to improve guest experience at your vacation rental.
Whether or not the platform(s) you have your vacation property on accepts cryptocurrency is out of your control, but you still need to prepare for the likely possibility this feature will soon be available.
And frequently utilized.
If you do not know much about cryptocurrency (you are not alone), then 2022 might be the year you educate yourself on it. After all, it has already begun impacting your industry.
The Pavilions in Madrid, Spain, a hotel, partnered with Coindirect, a platform that provides people and businesses crypto-related services, according to this article on euronews.com.
Revfine.com described the advantages of cryptocurrency in hospitality, such as:
● Simplifying payments
● Increasing security during transactions
● Improving travel experience based on storing information capabilities
Read more about its benefits in the article itself.
Clear Pricing Displays
How vacation rental platforms choose to display pricing is not up to you, but since customers are focusing on this in 2022, now is the perfect opportunity for you to review yours.
Because travelers have so many options, especially now that their reasons for travel have recently changed (more on that later), it is unwise to price your property at a figure that does not reflect the market or consider these factors:
● Minimum nightly rate
● Vacancy potential
● The influence of local, upcoming events
Vacasa goes into more depth about how the points above affect your pricing in its “How to price your vacation rental” article, in addition to listing helpful software tools that will land you on a fair number.
Guest Loyalty Program
Remember how last week’s blog mentioned Marriott utilized its loyalty program during the pandemic to drive bookings once travel resumed? It was there we learned this was an effective strategy, making the fact that guests want loyalty programs music to our ears!
The majority of vacation rental hosts operate one property; therefore, they do not have the means to develop an app like Marriott, but it is still possible to create a loyalty program to receive repeat bookings.
Below are some of the perks you can offer to encourage this:
● Discount on one night each trip
● Gift certificate to local restaurant
● Exclusive amenities most guests do not have access to
● Free tour of your rental’s locality led by you
● Seasonal bottle of wine from nearby winery (if applicable)
To dive deeper into the importance of this, read Avantio’s “Loyal Programs: What Are the Benefits for My Vacation Rental Business?”.
Updated Cleaning Fees
One of the best ways to prevent guests from joining your loyalty program is to blindside them with cleaning fees.
When they book a vacation, travelers want to know what they are getting themselves into, including the impact it will have on their bank account.
Back in December 2020, we came up with ways to help you determine your cleaning fee. If you conclude hiring a service is too expensive, here is a list of supplies you will need to do it yourself.
Whatever you decide, make sure your guests are aware of what they will incur.
More Long-Term Stays and Discounts
This and the final suggestion are the two you have the most control over, so take matters into your own hands and give your guests what they want.
The “Clear Pricing Displays” section merely mentioned travelers are staying at vacation rentals for different reasons than they used to, but this section elaborates on it.
Close to a year ago, this blog let you know travelers who worked remote could work from your vacation rental, as opposed to taking time off during their time away from home. Fast forward to the beginning of October 2021, when 23 percent of the remote workforce took extended trips (10 or more days) due to their newfound work flexibility, according to Skift.
Seeing this trend continue highlights the importance of accommodating long-term stays, which means you should dedicate some time to review these policies and pricing, as well as figuring out where you can afford to offer guests discounts.
Failing to do so will only turn travelers away.
(Remember to equip your property with office necessities.)
Better Customer Service
Better customer service being one of the top six things guests most want in 2022 signals a significant amount of interactions they have had are not satisfactory, opening the door for you to exceed their expectations.
One of the primary purposes, if not the primary purpose, of The Art Of Hosting is to empower you to deliver quality customer service that may lead to guests repeatedly vacationing at your property:
● Write them personal letters for their arrival
● Acknowledge their feedback about their stay
● Address potential security concerns
● Understand who they are and cater to their needs
● Help them preserve memories from the trip
All of these action steps, and many more, will allow you to stick out to guests as the one host who went above and beyond and made their stay extra special.
Listening is How You Improve
Having direct access to this type of information from people who could be your next guests makes your job a little bit easier, and, who knows, acting on it may lead to you becoming the host of their newfound favorite vacation spot.