Last Updated on March 10, 2015 by Mark Lavington
The online world never stands still; here’s our top ten digital trends and tips to increase holiday let bookings to help your holiday home business stay ahead of the game in 2015.
Content remains a key to your holiday home marketing
The last few years have seen an explosion in the use of the term ‘content marketing’. What does it really mean to a holiday home? Creating content that your visitors want to hear about, which will engage their interests and encourage them to book with you. The more of this information you’re creating in 2015 the more you’ll be benefiting.
Competing against the noise – building buying personas
The key to great content is creating information that is both relevant and engaging to your visitors. This is inherently linked to understanding whom it is that wants to stay with you, and as a result, the information they need and want to know.
In order to stand out from the increasing amounts of content being generated by your competitors you need to ensure everything you do is relevant.
Write down who it is that stays with you; how old are they, do they have children? what are their interests?
Once you have this, build your content around their needs and interests.
Give them your local knowledge
Not sure what to write about or struggling for content ideas?
48% of visitors will use their phones to find local attractions and restaurants during their stay. Give them that information and let them know everything your local area has to offer.
Mobile continues to grow
25% of all smartphone owners will book using their smartphone in 2015.
50% of all tablet owners will book using their device in 2015.
If your site isn’t responsive or mobile friendly you’re missing out on an increasing number of bookings. It’s a trend that’s here to stay so it may be the time to invest and embrace.
Make sure your site is quick!
If more visitors are booking on mobile, more will also be searching on wireless networks and on 3G or 4G technology. This puts an added emphasis on website speed, particularly when your conversion rate can drop by more than 55% if it takes the page more than 5 seconds to load.
New promotional avenues
The ways in which we promote holiday homes is changing; the static brochure website is now a thing of the past, with 3D Tours, drone photography, video guides and a whole host of other promotional avenues now available.
Remember that your visitors will want to enjoy a blend of content; mix it up and gain some variety in how you showcase your holiday home.
Engage on Social Media
Traditionally social media activity has focused on gaining bookings (before stay) and maintaining relationships (after stay). With 75% of visitors now updating their Facebook profile whilst on holiday there is a growing opportunity to engage with current occupants of your holiday home and to effectively amplify the great time they’re having.
Remember, there is no more credible source of information on your holiday home than the person staying in it. Which brings us on to reviews.
Online reviews continue to get bigger
Love them or loathe them, review sites now play an ever increasing impact on destination decisions; 88% of visitors consult reviews before making a booking and half say that they are the greatest influence on their final booking choice.
Managing your online reviews, using them in marketing and replying diligently and quickly to them will need to be a growing part of your online strategy in 2015.
Remember: 97% of people reading a review will believe it to be valid and accurate.
Is PPC worth it?
Travel accounts for nearly 10% of all Pay Per Click advertising. In an increasingly competitive search engine marketplace advertising still presents a good return on investment. More and more holiday homes and other accommodation providers will turn to advertising in 2015, and many, when implemented correctly and appropriately, will see results.
Email – the year round relationship
There’s a reason that for every £1 spent on email between £10 and £20 is generated in revenue. For holiday homes this will continue to play a big role in gaining year round contact in the most seasonal of businesses.
Use it to your advantage; gain regular contact and encourage repeat visits.
If you have any thoughts or experience of other digital trends and tips to increase holiday let bookings please leave a comment below.
Boshers offer specialist holiday home insurance to holiday letting owners across the UK. For more information on how a specialist insurer can help and support your holiday home business, please give us a call on 01237 429444.