Technology has shifted the vacation rental industry to a new paradigm. From marketing on the web to online payments, guests can go through an entire stay without any human contact whatsoever from the owner or the owner’s representatives. While that may facilitate management, it may decrease the likelihood that a renter will return.
The reason? Some vacation rental managers confuse the convenience of technology with good service.
Rental technology’s greatest strength – its ability to automate the entire reservation process – may be your greatest weakness. Your diminished personal contact with the guest strips the process of any personal connection. How do you make a personal impact on your guests in this automated world? What you can do to make sure your brand stands out to ensure repeat bookings?
Use these four tips to make a connection at every touchpoint in the traveler’s journey:
1. Make electronic inquiries count
Don’t just reply. Respond. Provide personalized answers to their questions and respond with insightful answers that make a meaningful connection. If you can show a real person behind the technology, they’re more likely to book with you. Photos and videos provide an additional touch, putting a face to an email address.
2. Add a personal touch to Booking
After your guests commit to your property, commit to them by making yourself easily accessible. Continue providing them with customized confirmation. Invest in a guest app that opens up a personal connection between you and your guests. With a mobile app, you can review property guidelines, share security codes and information and begin a relationship with your guests.
3. Make a connection during their stay
Even if they choose not to take advantage of the added service, your guests will appreciate that you opened up lines of communication for their questions or high-priority issues during their stay. Simply opening this avenue will encourage confidence and help dispel doubts on their part. A connection - even if it's only digital - allows them to communicate with someone directly and send photos of any property issues. You can, in turn, respond to queries and address problems quickly to show that premium level of service.
4. Appeal to guests on their level
Guests give you their hard-earned money. Give them a once-in-a lifetime experience in return. Suggest unique experiences that you know they'll enjoy. Of course, that means you need to take a few minutes to learn about them. Don't suggest a family experience to a group of singles or vice versa. Some guest apps provide coupon sections that offer discounts on nearby restaurants and attractions. When they enjoy themselves, the guest app encourages them to stay with an extended-stay discount. This powerful gap management feature that can fill in empty dates between bookings.
To make a lasting connection, you need to appeal to your guests on a personal level. Opening a direct line of communication using a mobile app might be your property’s ticket to success. Learn more about Kigo’s mobile app solution.