Corona hit the tourism industry hard and the pandemic shifted travel behaviour substantially. It has increased the focus on domestic travel, led to more last-minute bookings and more individual accommodation choices. For homeowners, these changing tastes could be an opportunity. Especially among ‘safety-first’ holidaymakers, vacation rentals have witnessed huge demand since 2020.
This has been proven through data from Holidu, a leading travel tech company in the vacation rental industry. Holidu is active in 21 markets with its search engine for holiday rentals that bundles more than 15 million offers from over a thousand travel sites such as Booking.com, VRBO and many local specialist providers and reaches more than 25 monthly visitors.
Under the Bookiply brand (www.bookiply.com), the company also helps holiday rental owners to get more bookings with less effort with a software-and-service solution.
Entering their second year in the Algarve, the Bookiply team in Faro looks back on a turbulent, but also successful start. Guido Brunelli, Area Lead Algarve of Bookiply, reveals 5 fundamental tips for vacation rental owners on their way to a thriving vacation rental business.
1. Global Reach: Boost your visibility on many portals with one account
If you want to run a successful business and generate bookings, you need to increase the visibility of your property. The most important step towards this goal is listing your property on relevant and trusted distribution channels. If your accommodation is displayed on different portals, you are also addressing different customer segments like families, retirees, people on workation – as well as customers from different markets like France, Germany, Austria etc. Choosing a channel manager like Bookiply, all information about your property is centralised and distributed in an optimised way to various booking portals such as Airbnb, Booking.com, VRBO and Holidu. In addition to high quality visibility and content, Bookiply offers an all-in-one software solution for simplified multi-channel management of bookings.
2. Explore the local market
It’s time to look within our borders. According to recent data, the share of domestic bookings in the Algarve increased to 49% in 2020 vs 24% in 2019. People want to travel to safer alternatives, rather taking the car than a plane. And in many instances, this involves booking a nice house in a remote area away from the masses. This is a trend we expect to continue into the next few years. In regard to this key trend, the Holidu app has been constantly ranking among the top 5 travel apps in Portugal.
3. It’s not only about summer
Due to lower travel costs, less need to organise in advance and eagerness to escape from the big city centres, domestic travelling is not restricted to summer months. New adapted school calendars in different regions and countries impacted the once guaranteed summer holidays – so people may need to take holidays in other months than July and August. This goes along with the fact that people will take whatever opportunity they can to travel given that travel restrictions can be imposed or lifted at any time.
4. Welcome short stays
The vast majority of homeowners are still unsure if shorter stays would be worth the effort and financial costs involved in maintaining their property between stays. With cleaning fees and the organisation of check-ins and check-outs, they were hesitant to earn less money from short stays. This is why Bookiply has implemented the feature Short Stay. It’s an easy-to-use feature, activated with just one click, which reorients homeowners towards setting a minimum price they want to earn for an entire stay instead of a minimum number of nights.
5. Get 500% more visibility with professional photos
People looking for a holiday home on booking portals need to be interested in your property as soon as they see it. For a property to stand out in the competitive market with more than 30,000 vacation rentals in the region, it has to shine. Data from Bookiply shows that appealing photos increase the visibility of an accommodation by up to 500%! Therefore Bookiply supports its customers with a professional photo service – free of charge for Bookiply’s customers.