Vrbo is, without a doubt, one of the most well-known sites for matching hosts with tourists interested in renting their vacation homes. With over 3 million monthly visitors to their website, vacation rental owners who want to make the most of their business should advertise their homes on Vrbo.
However, nothing is without flaws, as we all know. Because of Vrbo’s growing popularity, the rivalry has become more intense than ever.
Many hosts believe that simply by placing their home on Vrbo, they will automatically receive traffic and reservations. While this may be the case in some cases, you still should make your home more appealing and competitive.
Make no mistake: owners must be on top of their game to ensure that their vacation rental appears well in the search results.
Here are some Vrbo ideas and methods for owners to stand out from the crowd now that your rental is being exposed and sold to more clients.
Why should you optimize your Vrbo listing?
The reason you should improve your listing is simple: improving your placement in Vrbo search results is a terrific method to boost your revenue. Their search engine assists travelers in swiftly locating the information they require. As a result, it’s a smart idea to optimize your listing with your guests in mind. You’ll need to consider the type of traveler you want to attract and what they could be looking for when conducting their search. Everything you do will affect your rankings to entice guests to book.
So keep reading if you want to discover how to make sure you’re always in the first place! Let’s look at the most important Vrbo optimization tips and tactics.
How to improve your Vrbo ranking
The competition may be fierce, but you may take advantage of various strategies to boost your property’s visibility. Continue reading to learn our top ten tips and tricks for Vrbo owners.
1. Make quick bookings possible.
Allow your guests to book your property right away instead of waiting for a response. According to Vrbo, postings that include online booking receive 50 percent more reservations than those not. When you consider that 90 percent of guests prefer to book online, it’s a no-brainer.
Accepting bookings and payments using Vrbo in real-time provides a simple experience for both parties. As a result, your visibility will improve, and you will appear higher in Vrbo search results. Owners are thrilled to have the nights blocked off their calendar, and guests are pleased that their accommodation requests is swiftly approved.
2. Come up with a catchy title
The property headline will be the first thing guests see while searching on Vrbo, so make it count. That’s why it’s a good idea to look at your rivals first and purposefully create something different from them. Make use of your individuality to entice potential visitors. Play to your strengths – what do you have in your home that no one else has?
There are many other strategies to get people to click on your listing. Whether it’s a time-sensitive “Late Summer Special” or a Valentine’s Day couples bargain, eye-catching deals will help you stand out.
If your vacation rental has a brand name, you should add it as well. Information that can be found in the description should not be included. You should also avoid using all capital letters. This may give the impression of despair and aggression.
3. Come up with a fantastic description.
A great description is an important component of a successful Vrbo listing. Now is the moment to focus on all of your vacation rental’s outstanding features, such as air conditioning, free parking, and an outdoor pool. Make sure to mention them in a way that emphasizes how they will improve your guests’ experience. Just make sure you don’t go on too long and lose your reader’s attention. The key is to use the appropriate words.
Try to imagine what it would be like to spend the night at your own home. To describe the experience your guests will have, use phrases like “enjoy a romantic evening cozying up to the fireplace” or “wake up to the breathtaking sight of the sun peeping over the Rocky Mountains” to entice them to book your home. Additionally, it will set your property distinct from the competition.
4. Maintain a quick response time
The time it takes you to react to inquisitive guests is one of the most important elements determining your Vrbo listing quality score. While Vrbo recommends responding within 24 hours, faster responses (i.e., within a few hours) are more likely to improve your guests’ satisfaction and your listing score.
⭐ Additional Vrbo listing advice: To reduce your burden, improve guest experience, and promote your Vrbo listing, invest in vacation rental software.
5. Compile a list of the best traveler reviews.
When travelers search for homes on Vrbo, the properties with the highest ratings will appear at the top of the list. It’s also the first item most potential guests notice when looking at a Vrbo ad. That means it’s more crucial than ever to ask each guest to give you feedback on their stay. To achieve the coveted five-star rank, collect as many reviews as possible.
Remember that your review score is derived by averaging all of your previous reviews. Your average will be less than a full star if the rating is closer to a half star than a full star. To get five stars on your profile, aim for a total score of at least 4.75.
6. Publish flawless photographs
On Vrbo, the first photo you show has to be your best – or else you risk scaring away potential bookers. Anyone who has ever booked a hotel or other type of lodging online knows that images can make or break a listing.
We’re talking about current, current, high-quality, and well-staged professional vacation rental photography. Don’t forget to take advantage of the 24-photo upload limit that each Vrbo listing offers. Consider it a one-time investment that will pay off year after year after your booking calendar is completely booked.
Vrbo advises uploading photos with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels or above for the best quality. It’s also crucial to consider the content of your photographs. Consider what your visitors would like to see before snapping photos of your property. Cleaning and decluttering any space, as well as tidying up, straightening out your décor, and removing personal objects and “junk,” will greatly improve the property’s appeal.
It’s also crucial to photograph the house in natural light and with a realistic perspective—highlight the house’s particular qualities. Showing off your home’s unique elements will add to its appeal. You should still take clear house images, including areas that guests will want to see before they arrive, such as the bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen.
Remember to include the property itself and any exterior areas such as the backyard or terrace. Photos of the scenery or minor features are excellent, but they shouldn’t overpower the property itself.
7. Avoid Cancellations
Dealing with guest cancellations is inconvenient, but you know what’s even worse? Not being able to accomplish things on your own!
Nothing irritates online travel agencies more than hosts canceling their guests’ bookings, even with a valid cause. We are not kidding when we say that one or two close cancellations can cause your listing’s quality score to plummet. Good luck with your recovery!
If there is no way for you to avoid canceling the reservation, you should try to reach an agreement with your potential guests so that they cancel it on their own. What are the chances? They may return to your rental at a later date, and you will no longer have to deal with that black mark on your record.
Remember, the fewer cancellations you make, the higher your ranking on the site will be. If your cancellation rate is high, you will appear lower in search results, making it less likely for visitors to locate and book your property.
8. Include details about the place.
Adding a verified property address to your rental listing can help it rank higher on Vrbo. But don’t worry: Vrbo won’t give up your specific address to users; instead, it’ll use it to locate a rough position on a map search.
Remember to include location tags like “Downtown,” “Rural,” or “Waterfront.” When potential visitors filter their searches, these labels will help them find your home, enhancing its visibility.
They’re also simple to set up, so you’re missing out big time if you’re not using them.
9. Keep your calendar up to current at all times.
There’s nothing more aggravating for tourists than trying to book a hotel only to discover that the calendar hasn’t been updated in months and that the resort is fully booked. Maintaining accurate availability will help you get more reservations while also maintaining the quality of your listing.
Vrbo will stop displaying your calendar on the listing page if you don’t update it at least once every 60 days. But that’s only to keep it on the list! We recommend that you do it at least once every 30 days, if not more regularly if you want proper visibility. Extra Vrbo recommendation: With a vacation rental channel manager, you can keep your schedule up to date and fully connected with other listing sites.
10. Provide discounted rates for the first few reservations.
Getting started with OTAs sometimes be the most difficult part of the job. If you’re new to Vrbo and want to entice tourists to book your property right away, you’ll need to offer them something tempting. Most guests will automatically dismiss any listings that haven’t had any previous bookings.
Offering a slightly lower nightly fee than your nearest competition can be a terrific way to secure those initial few bookings. You may only be able to persuade a few individuals to rent from you, but that’s all it takes! Things will get a lot easier once you have collected your first four or five reviews, and potential guests will be much more eager to choose your house.
Setting lower rates at the start will ensure that bookings come in soon for new Vrbo hosts. Just remember to update them at some point in the future.
11. Become a Premier Vrbo Host
Who doesn’t need a pick-me-up now and then? Vrbo’s Premier program, which acknowledges and rewards performance in the same manner that Airbnb’s Superhost program does, is open to the finest hosts on the marketplace.
Being designated as a Premier Host by Vrbo comes with a few rewards: access to their Boost program. Boosts are similar to “power-ups” in video games in that they provide you with a temporary advantage over your opponents.
You’ll get a boost every time a visitor checks out of your home, which you can use to boost your listing’s ranking higher than it would be otherwise!
12. Become a member of the Fast Start Program
Vrbo understands how difficult it may be to get started as a new host, which is why their Fast Start program was just established. What exactly is it, you might wonder? Simply put, it’s intended to assist new business owners in expanding their operations on their platform.
Vrbo accomplishes this by giving members more prominence, but they’ll also let you import evaluations from other sites or platforms, such as Airbnb or Google My Business. Make the most of this chance, and you might be on your way to becoming a Premier Host in no time!
Now it’s your turn
Competition is stiffer than ever on OTAs, and Vrbo is no exception. It should come as no surprise that if you want to reap the benefits of appearing on the platform totally, you’ll need to prepare.
Our top Vrbo listing suggestions, on the other hand, will help you compete on an equal footing. You’ll get more inquiries, bookings, and a better ranking in Vrbo search results when you follow this advice.