Tips to Boost Bookings For Your Short-Term Rental!

If you own a short-term rental property, you know how important it is to attract the right guests. In addition to getting great reviews and word-of-mouth referrals, there are a few things you can do to boost your bookings! By setting a competitive rate, optimizing your listing for searches, writing stellar titles and descriptions, adding high-quality photos of your space—and more—you’ll give potential renters all the information they need when making their decision.

Set a Competitive Rate

A key thing to remember is that the price you set for your listing is not just about how much you can charge. You also want to make sure that guests feel like they got a good deal and hosts feel like they’re making money.

To do this, you’ll need to check out what similar listings are renting for in your area. Then set the price at a rate that is fair to both the guest and the host.

You don’t want anyone feeling ripped off or overcharged with each booking—if so, it could hurt your reviews and future bookings! For example, if there’s another place nearby with similar amenities that costs $50/night and yours goes up to $125/night then people might think something feels off about it (and maybe even question why).

Optimize Your Listing for Searches

Use the right keywords: Keywords are the words or phrases people use to search for a product. It’s important to use the right ones so that your listing shows up when people are looking for it. To do this, you’ll want to research what other listings for similar properties are using and add these keywords in your listing details.

Fill in all description spaces when editing your listing: To get discovered by potential guests on booking platforms such as Airbnb, you need to fill out all of the description space fields available within each platform’s user interface. These include things like location details (address, neighborhood) and amenities (amenities). Be sure not too go overboard here—you don’t want any potential guest wondering why there is so much detail about an item they don’t plan on using!

Vacation Rental Optimization

Write a Stellar Listing Title

You can’t go wrong by writing a stellar listing title. This is the first thing people see when they search for your property, and it needs to be clear, concise and descriptive. Your listing title should be a good summary of the listing itself—so if you have multiple rooms, or amenities like hot tubs or pools, make sure these are included in your initial description.

A good rule of thumb is that titles shouldn’t be longer than about 70 characters (including spaces). If you’re having trouble fitting everything in that space limit, consider breaking up the title into two separate lines so that users can see more information at once when they click on a result.

Write a Comprehensive Description

Your description needs to be clear, concise and compelling. If you’re not sure how to do this, think about what makes your unit different from the others. Do you have a special location? Are there amenities that guests can’t find anywhere else? Does your unit have unique features or decor?

The goal is to make people want to book your place first—so be detailed and specific about what sets you apart from other listings in the same area. (For example: “My property has hardwood floors throughout, and an outdoor space for BBQs! You won’t find this at many other places nearby.”)

Be honest about any potential downsides too; no one likes surprises after they’ve booked an Airbnb. If there’s construction next door or a noisy nightclub across the street, address them before anyone finds out on their own

Add High-Quality, Professional Photos

Make sure you have high-quality, professional photos. Professional photography can make all the difference in how guests will perceive your property. You want to hire a photographer who knows how to capture your space in the best way possible so that it looks beautiful and feels inviting.

  • Use a wide-angle lens: While some cameras come with an ultra-wide angle lens, if yours doesn’t, then you should try to find one as soon as possible for hire or purchase (there are many affordable options). This will help capture more of the room’s beauty and give viewers a better idea of its size and layout.
  • Use natural light: There’s nothing worse than having dim, dark photos on your listing page! When taking photos for rooms that have windows facing outwards toward the sun, make sure they’re open during shooting time so there’s plenty of natural light coming through—but don’t forget about those areas where direct sunlight could cause glare or harsh shadows!
  • Use consistent styling: Whether it be furniture pieces or decorative accessories like wall hangings and rugs/carpets; create a cohesive look throughout all images by using similar items throughout each shot so viewers can easily identify them across different pages—this makes browsing easier for potential travelers too!

List All Amenities in Your Space

You should list all the amenities that are available in your space, and make sure to specifically mention anything not listed on Airbnb. For example, if you have a full kitchen but no stovetop, be sure to let guests know they can use an electric hot plate to cook meals. If you have a special rafts for floating around on, say so! This will help them see how much fun they can have at your rental.

Amenities in vacation rentals

Include House Rules in Your Listing

Be clear and specific. Your house rules should be set in a friendly tone, which helps guests understand what you expect of them while they stay with you. This will also help to avoid any confusion or misunderstandings that could arise from vague language.

You may find yourself writing long lists of things to include in your listing’s House Rules section, but don’t worry about being too wordy! The best way for guests to read through all of them is by making sure each point can stand on its own so that it’s easy for even the most distracted reader to pick out exactly what they need without having to keep reading through the whole list.

Also make sure that your charges are fair: no charging $2000 for smoking! You should also make sure not to clutter up your listing with unnecessary rules like “no shoes” or “no pets”. While those rules might be important if there were pets living inside your home and someone wanted an opportunity where they could smoke indoors (and thus not have their allergies flare up), these kinds of unimportant add-ons can feel like a waste of valuable space when there aren’t any pets living there anyway—so stick only with relevant information and save some room!

Get a Superhost Badge

The Superhost badge signifies that you’re a top Airbnb host who has maintained high ratings and great reviews from your guests. It will make your listing stand out on the site and give it more visibility, so you can get more bookings and possibly even higher prices as well.

The key to earning a Superhost badge is maintaining a 4.8 star average rating or better at all times. If you don’t already have Superhost status, there are several things you can do to get there:

  • Make sure all of the amenities listed in your listing are accurate. If no Wi-Fi is available, say so.
  • Don’t forget about customer service! Be friendly and helpful when answering inquiries from potential guests (and always respond promptly). Also remember that many questions originate from simple misunderstandings—for example, if someone asks whether parking is included with their reservation because they’re not familiar with short-term rentals in general but were thinking about staying at an AirBnb property for business purposes instead of leisure travel purposes, simply explain that parking isn’t part of the rental rate since this isn’t like staying at a hotel where everything comes with room rates or hotel taxes include off-street parking options without extra charges added on top of them later down the line).

Add Instant Book to Your Listing

If you have a short-term rental listing on Airbnb, it’s important to note that Instant Book is not enabled by default.

This means that guests who are searching for a place will not be able to book your listing without first contacting you. This can lead to some missed bookings and wasted time for both parties.

However, this feature is easy enough to enable: just head over to the “Settings” tab under “Your Listing” and scroll down until you see the option that says “Make This Listing Available on Instant Book?” Select yes and confirm your selection by clicking on “Save Changes.”

If you follow these tips, you will be able to boost your bookings and make more money as a host! Please contact us at WISH Short Term Rental for a free consultation… We have shown hundreds of hosts how to make more money with their rental properties!

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This article originally appeared in WishSTR Blog.

Shawn Goh, CEO

Property Management and Hosting

Shawn Goh began his career as an IT special consultant with leading firms such as SAP. With his extensive background in technology, Shawn built the ever-developing hardware and software infrastructure which allows for smooth operations across our portfolio. Coming from humble beginnings, Shawn has always been a tireless champion of progress.

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Noah Laker, CFO

Property Management and Hosting

Noah Laker led leasing projects in San Jose and Sacramento, CA while practicing real estate sales and property management. Noah and Shawn met in a leasing office in Sacramento, forming a modest joint venture for AirBnB and VRBO Investment which eventually flowered into a vast enterprise. 

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