How to Get More Short-Term Customers for Your Rental Property
Jan 30, 2024
If you own a rental property, moving away from the traditional model and into short-term rentals has the potential to be extremely lucrative. That said, if you don’t do things the right way, you run the risk of having a property that’s always vacant and causing you more problems than it’s worth.
Target Market Analysis
The first thing that you must take into account is who your target market actually is. Is your property appealing to traveling for an event and just looking for somewhere to crash at night, or is it more suitable for a family on vacation who needs a lot of space?
As well as the purpose of travel, other factors like age and income level are also relevant to defining who your ideal customer is. For example, if you own a luxury beachfront house, your target demographic might include high-income couples looking for romantic getaways. On the other hand, if you have a budget-friendly apartment that’s right near popular tourist spots, families or young travelers could be who you need to target.
Marketing to short-term renters differs from long-term tenants because their needs and preferences tend to vary greatly. Short-term renters are often vacationers looking for unique experiences, while long-term tenants prioritize comfort, convenience, and consistency. Once you know who your target market is, you can then focus on making sure the space has everything it needs to appeal to them.
Property Presentation and Marketing
After identifying your target market and making sure your property is perfect for them, you now need to make sure you sell it well. The first step towards an appealing presentation is investing in professional quality photography.
You can have the best real estate in the world, but if you have bad-quality photos that don’t showcase it well, most potential tenants won’t even look at the rest of the listing. Your photos should focus on highlighting the most important parts of the property, based on what you know about your target audience.
The next part is writing the property description, and again, this must be done with the perspective of your target audience in mind. Is the fact that your property has a strong internet connection and a comfortable workspace important to your potential tenants? What about the fact that it’s right in the heart of the city where all the restaurants and nightlife are? Focus on whatever is most important to the people you are trying to attract.
Maximizing Visibility and Bookings
Once your property is ready and your listings are optimized, the final part of the equation is putting your listings in the right place. This involves optimizing them for search engines, using multiple platforms, and incorporating customer reviews and feedback.
In terms of platforms, comparison sites are especially important. One good example is the online travel company eDreams, where you can not only search for hotel accommodation, but also apartments. They have a separate button under their search tool that allows travelers to easily search specifically for apartments by date and region. Leveraging the authority that platforms like this have is one of the best ways to get more eyeballs on your listings.
The next thing to consider is optimizing your listings for search engines. If you think back to a time when you purchased something online, you likely started out by searching for information about it in different ways. Each of the pages you visited was optimized in one way or another for the types of searches that you were making.
Try to incorporate this same approach in your listings. Insert relevant keywords into their titles and descriptions to give them the best chance of showing up in search engine results. Popular SEO tools like Ahrefs even have dedicated resources to help those in the real estate space in this area.
After you start having people stay at your property, you’re bound to get plenty of feedback, and this can be used in two key ways. Firstly, if all of your guests are mentioning the same kinds of problems, then that’s a clear sign that there’s something you need to fix. Secondly, positive reviews can be your most powerful marketing tool. Reviews are the main way that prospective renters will gain trust in your property, so don’t sleep on using customer feedback to your advantage.
Understanding your target market, presenting your property effectively, and growing its online visibility are the keys to finding more short-term customers. Make sure you take feedback from customers onboard and keep an eye on any trends or changes happening in the industry. Be prepared to experiment and change things when they aren’t working, and you’ll be well on your way to a fully booked calendar.