That you don’t need your own holiday home website?
I think it may well be! But let me tell you – you do need your own holiday home website!
It’s often perceived that websites are expensive to build and maintain as technical support is needed to update them each time. They are not! You need to buy a domain name (£8 a year) and some hosting (£60 a year). Use a WordPress website, for example, to build your own holiday home website. And easily edit and update it.
But with the perception that websites are technical to manage and expensive, at the start of the holiday home owner journey, so many owners don’t even think about creating their own.
So you take your product to market and list on the large listing sites. Giving up control to these big players, making your special place fit in and blend in with the 100 s of other holiday properties on there. Meaning you have no real control over how your listing looks and how your property is portrayed.
With your own holiday home website, this isn’t the case.
Your own website is your opportunity to show off your holiday rental your way.
You’re not restricted to ticking boxes for the features you have (and what about those features you do have that there isn’t a tick-box for?) You don’t have to fit your description into a 200 word box. You’re not limited by the number of photos you add, you can add a video, you can include other information about your area and about you the owner. Importantly you can set your prices exactly how you want to set them, not having to fit them into the large listing site’s pricing structure.
Your own website gives you flexibility
On your own holiday home website you set your seasons, your minimum stay, your prices, your way! You have flexibility in the way you operate. For example, you don’t have to take online payments if that makes you feel uncomfortable. Just take online bookings, approve the booking and then handle the payment off-line.
To convert website visitors into making a booking, you will need an online booking tool. This will differ depending on your website’s platform. But there are many third booking systems that integrate with your website for example Supercontrol, FreeToBook and Bookalet. Generate reports, log payments to track when final balances are due. Having these admin function in one place can free up a lot of your time.
You can chose how guests communicate with you too – by phone, by email, by both. No restrictions on only being able to email guests once they’ve booked.
Your website forms the hub around which all other marketing activity orbits.
Your social media activity should be aimed to pique visitor’s interest to get them to click through to your website. Listings on the smaller and more niche listing sites (this should form part of your marketing strategy) often allow you to add your website, taking guests directly to your site, which is your aim.
So, is the worst piece of advice for new holiday home owners that they don’t need their own holiday home website. It’s certainly up there!
Do you want to create your own beautiful website? Or update your existing website to one you can be proud of? Then check this out from Naomi from Branching Out Online:
Join via this link and there’s also an exclusive Facebook group. Naomi will be there from a techie and online presence point of view. And I’ll be there to answer your specific holiday home website related queries.