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Factors that Determine Listings on Booking Platforms

Choosing the Right Booking Platforms

In our previous article, we looked at five different booking platforms – Airbnb, Booking.com, Vrbo (HomeAway), TripAdvisor and Expedia – to list your properties on.  

But in order to be listed on these platforms, your property must meet platform-specific requirements. Factors such as location, price and unique features, will shape whether your property is a good fit with the company’s target audience. 

By considering these different factors, you will be able to determine whether your property listing will benefit from being listed on certain booking platforms. 

Here are some factors that determine whether short-term rentals are suited to particular booking platforms: 

Property location

The location of your property is essential to determining its profitability. If your short-term rental is situated in a tourist destination, then this will attract leisure travellers needing accommodation as part of their holiday. Sites like TripAdvisor, Expedia and Vrbo will work for these types of vacation rentals. 

On the other hand, if your property is located in a city centre, densely populated with office buildings, then this will be suitable for business guests requiring a place to stay during their business trips. Airbnb and Booking.com are platforms that will work for properties like these. 

Regardless of whether your property is more suited to business or leisure travellers, it’s worth considering the affordability and walkability that comes with staying in a particular area. 

Having amenities close by like public transport, shops and restaurants, as well as recreational activities, will boost the number of bookings your property receives, increasing the expected return on investment (ROI).

Type of property

The size and type of property being listed will play a part in determining your target audience. 

Rentals come in different shapes and sizes, with certain guests gravitating towards particular short-term rentals. While business travellers may seek out apartments, families might prefer staying in houses. 

In addition, the location of your property will have a significant impact on the type of property being listed. Urban areas will predominantly have smaller rentals, like apartments and hotel rooms, whereas rural areas will have larger properties, like holiday homes and cabins. 

With any type of property, it should be furnished to attract more prospective guests, increasing profitability.

Price

Trying to put a price on your short-term rental can be tricky. 

Ideally, you want to set a rental rate that brings in income and positive cash flow, but doesn’t deter prospective guests from booking – i.e. you get no rentals if the price is too high, but you risk losing money if the price is too low. 

To figure out the right balance, look at the prices of rentals that are similar to your property. Depending on how the short-term rental market is performing, adjust your rental rate so it remains competitive against other listings. 

Booking platforms such as Airbnb and Expedia are good if you want to advertise your property as a budget option, which will make low consistent profits. Whereas if you want to make huge profits sporadically, advertising your luxury stay on sites like Vrbo and Booking.com will help. 

For vacation rentals, Syncbnb recommends applying dynamic pricing to your property. With demand being seasonal, this should be reflected in the rental price. Charge a slightly higher nightly rate when demand is high and when the hot season comes to an end, lower your price to attract potential guests.

Unique features

So, what constitutes a unique feature? 

This could be the type of property being offered, such as caravans and cottages, that provide an alternative experience that differs from traditional houses, hotels and apartments. 

It could also refer to the unique amenities that come with your property, including: 

  • Kitchen facilities – full kitchen, washing machine/laundry service 
  • Bathroom essentials – soap, shampoo, conditioner, body milk 
  • Entertainment – TV with streaming services, DVDs and books, swimming pool/hot tub 
  • Other – air conditioning, reliable Wi-Fi, charging adapters, 24-hour check-in 

According to iGMS, an investment of $60 in smart amenities can increase your revenue by up to 20%

As amenities are becoming more and more important when it comes to booking a rental, providing unique amenities will help your property stand out against others.

To summarise

Before listing your property on various booking platforms, it is important to understand who your target audience is through these factors and many more. 

If your property doesn’t match platform-specific requirements and isn’t a good fit with the target audiences being advertised to, then it should not be listed on those platforms. 

As booking platforms constantly grow and evolve to accommodate travellers’ changing needs and preferences, a site that didn’t work for your property before might be suitable now. Keeping up-to-date with these sites will ensure that your property is tailored to the target audiences on these platforms. 

Need assistance in listing your short-term rental on booking platforms? Speak to our team of experts at Keey to find out more! 

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