Loyal repeat guests are the aim of the holiday property rental game and guest feedback often reflects why guests did or did not enjoy their stay.
In this post, we bring you top tips, opinions and input from local managers and their teams, as well as some real-life examples of guest feedback from our properties.
Here are our top tips on what to do to maximise guest loyalty…
How can you improve guest loyalty?
1. Ensure Guests’ Expectations Are Met
What guests saw and paid for online should correspond with what they are presented with on arrival.
Photos, website copy, communication and general information should be honest, accurate and up to date. Our post about how to stand out on listing sites delves a lot deeper into how you can ensure guests’ expectations are met on arrival by making sure your website is presented properly.
Often photos can be misleading, but this was not the case. We were surprised by the reality and the whole family agreed that Chalet Goville was very appealing.Chalet Goville – March 2022
This kind of feedback is the ultimate compliment. The last thing anyone wants is for guests to be unhappy on arrival, for managers to be on the back foot because a property does not meet guest expectations, and for owners to be upset that their rental property is not appreciated.
Check through the photos and other images of your property on a regular basis.
Update photos, plans and descriptions on sites and adverts as quickly as possible following refurbishments, remodelling, or after adding new additional features and facilities.
If guests feel they have been (unintentionally) misled, listen to their feedback, take another look at the information on your website and react accordingly.
Respond to enquiries quickly and accurately before the guests’ arrival and be available throughout their stay.
Make sure guests know what they are getting for their money before they arrive. Provide the necessary information for guests to make an informed choice.
Point out potential problems. For example, open tread stairs and a suspended metal fireplace may appeal to some guests who can appreciate the design aspect. But to others, this could be seen as a potential danger to their kids and a negative factor that actually puts them off booking.
2. Make Guests Feel Welcome
There are a couple of things to consider here. First is the face to face welcome from the guest/property manager.
First impressions count, and this meeting could make or break the guests’ stay, so make sure to get it right! Small touches like offering a welcome basket go a long way in adding a personal touch that keeps guests coming back.
Our blog post about making guests feel welcome covers all you need to know about meeting and greeting your guests, as well as how to set the property up for their arrival. Read it here.
Secondly, consider how to make your guests feel at home – without making them feel like they’re in someone else’s property!
What works for your family may not work for others, so if you want to attract loyal guests, aim to strike the balance between creating a cosy, homely atmosphere that isn’t filled with your own clutter. Find tips about converting your second home into a commercial rental business here.
The chalet was very comfortable, very clean and very well equipped. It’s in a particularly quiet environment. We had a very friendly welcome from the chalet manager.Chalet Cosyneige – August 2021
3. Ensure The Property Is Spotless
We had a great time with all the ingredients to cook up a very good recipe : the snow, a chalet so clean that it was beyond reproach, the comfort, an amazing view, and the manager who was very involved in his job! We’ll be delighted to come back!Chalet de Paul et Marie – December 2017
Cleanliness is something most guests just won’t compromise on and is a topic that can often feature in your guest reviews, whether it’s positive or negative.
Changeover days are busy and time is limited, so organise your property in a way that your local team can complete their work comfortably within the time available between a departure and the next arrival.
Local teams (including your property manager and cleaning team) take pride in not only cleaning but preparing the properties suitably for guests. For example, setting up bedrooms and bathrooms, checking bulbs, restocking toiletries, amongst many other tasks.
Ensure your equipment is in good condition and replace tired, damaged or broken items as and when necessary.
4. Value Your Local Network
Wonderful stay….A big thank you also to Corinne for her warm welcome and her professionalism. We are coming back next year!Chalet Morclan – December 2021
Whether you manage your property yourself or employ an independent professional property manager, the local manager is guest-facing and is crucial to the success of your business.
At OVO Network, our managers are bilingual (English and French), proactive problem solvers, with good local knowledge and solid support networks. They are proud of the properties they look after and offer a good service to ensure guests feel looked after and enjoy a great holiday.
Despite all the best-laid plans, things break down, problems occur, and weather conditions can be a factor, especially in destinations such as ski resorts. The way managers deal with any problems or concerns can make or break a guest’s holiday. Support them well!
5. Share local knowledge and advice
We are leaving with plenty of very good memories. Many thanks to the owner for being present and for his advice.Chalet Alyssum – December 2017
Some of our properties have their own customised A to Z guides in two languages, to really give guests a good overview of what’s on offer both at the property and in the area.
Guests can unpack their cars, knowing that instructions for the Wi-Fi, key safe, sauna, TV, jacuzzi, or any other facilities are in the guide which is available 24 hours a day.
You can also include information and recommendations on different activities and attractions if you choose. The guide is intended to save guests time and enhance their experience.
6. Offer Good Value For Money
Absolutely perfect welcome and stay. We’re hesitating about giving too many compliments, because we know this chalet gets booked up way in advance, and if we share what we really think, we’ll have to book now to stay in several years time!La Ferme a Juju – February 2018
Your guests chose to stay in your property, in a beautiful part of the world – out of all of the competition!
Support and help them to arrive safely, without stress, to find their feet and really enjoy their stay.
Welcome them and make them feel at home in a property that has been specifically set up with their group in mind. All of your efforts and attention to detail will be noted, appreciated, and may very well mean that your current guests will keep on coming back.
Ultimately, to maximise guest loyalty, you’ve got to show that you care. The market is saturated and there is so much competition out there when it comes to holiday rental properties, so you have to offer that personal touch in order to stand out!
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