How to Get Return Guests at Your North East Holiday Rental

Thursday 21st May, 2020 by hostandstay

Increasing repeat customers is a stumbling block in every industry, not just the short-term rental sector. While return customers are easier to secure than brand new guests, it can be difficult to establish a loyal customer base to begin with.

Brand new customers haven’t stayed at your property before but once they’ve hit that reserve button, it’s all about making a good impression. By doing this, you’re creating a lasting connection to your holiday let which will have guests booking time and time again. Plus – once they’ve visited once, you can ask them to book directly next time to avoid online travel agencies fees. Bonus!

The question is – how do you do it?

Communication is Key

Communication is key to establishing a loyal customer base so always meet any phone calls, emails or messages with responsiveness and kindness.

From the moment your guest books your property, you should provide quick and efficient replies to any questions they may have. By providing fast and friendly answers, you’re showing that you value their custom and you’re happy to take the time to provide a good service.

By answering all communications quickly, guests will feel confident that you can assist them with any issues they may have once they arrive at the property such as accessing the building or working the heating.

Communicating with your guests shouldn’t end once they check out though. We always recommend following up their stay with a request for personal feedback. This will not only help you improve your short-term holiday let, it will also demonstrate that you really care about the level of service you’ve provided.

Take the Time to Interact with Your Guests

When guests book a short-term holiday rental, they expect a different experience compared to booking a hotel. Reserving a room in a hotel has a very professional and business like feel. Whereas staying at a holiday rental can feel personal and with that you can strike up a friendly rapport with your guests.

Small gestures like travel or dining recommendations show that you want your guests to get the most from their trip. We always recommend checking in with your guest once they’ve arrived to ensure they’re settling in okay as this shows you’re responsible and care about their stay. You could also leave a handwritten note or welcome basket in the property as a thoughtful gift.

Most importantly, guests need to feel as though you’re making an effort to personally interact with them. By doing this, you’ll strike up a friendly relationship and your guests will trust you can accommodate them on future trips.

Provide a Top-Rate Experience

Your guests will only leave a great review and book your property again if they have a top-rate experience. This means going above and beyond to exceed their expectations.

Your guest will view photographs of your property and check the amenities on your listing before they book so they’ll have an idea what to expect when they arrive. But you can go the extra mile by adding extras and luxury touches to ensure your guests have the best stay possible.

As we already mentioned, welcome baskets and handwritten notes are a lovely gesture. Another great tip is to stock up on kitchen essentials. By adding coffee, tea, sugar, milk, salt, pepper and olive oil you’re providing your guests with the essentials they’ll need for their self-catering stay. Always make sure you have enough cookware and cutlery too!

Another key part of providing a top-rate experience for your guests is technology. We recommend every property should have a strong WiFi connection and a Smart TV in the main living space to begin with. But if you really want to amp up the luxury details, you could add a TV package such as Sky, Now TV or Netflix and a virtual assistant like an Alexa or Echo Dot.

Incentivise Guests to Book Again Direct

You should definitely include some incentives for guests to come back to your holiday home again. Try offering a discount on their next stay and you could also include perks for returning guests such as discounts for local businesses you’ve patterned with like restaurants or bars.

The key to this is to incentivise your guest to book direct for their next trip rather than using an online travel agency. Direct them to your own website and give them a coupon code that they can apply for a percentage off. By driving sales direct, you will avoid OTA booking fees and pocket more of the profit!

So when you get a new booking, take it as a chance to establish your loyal customer base further. It should always mean more than just one booking for you, it’s about bagging a great review, securing a repeat customer and most importantly showing you’re a professional and reliable host.

At Host North East, we can take care of all of that for you. Our dedicated team are always on hand to ensure our guests get the best experience possible. From lightening fast response rates to 5* reviews, we provide a stress-free hands-free service for short-term holiday rental owners across the North East. Our proven methods can not only increase your guest satisfaction but also your revenue and overall profitably of your holiday let property.

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