While successful guest experiences are made better by fabulous amenities, gourmet cuisine offerings as well as myriad nearby attractions and landmarks, it really comes down to how you communicate with your guests.
However, there is always the potential for things to go askew if vacation rental owners don’t implement guest communications properly or worse yet, not at all!
Today, we’ll dive deep into the realm of guest communications, whilst providing you the scoop on how a Touch Stay digital guidebook can make your contact with guests shine. In other words, a house manual your guests will actually want to read!
To keep you in the loop, Hostaway and Touch Stay are now neatly integrated with each other’s software, making it a breeze to serve guests practical yet valuable information while decreasing repetitive guest questions!
Guest communications are the touchpoints throughout your interaction with guests that create a marvellous guest experience. They span the entirety of your visitor journey, meaning communication kicks off the moment your guests book with you either via your direct booking site or your online travel agency listing (OTA)!
A brilliant guest experience goes hand in hand with your guest communications. Supplying guests practical information, alongside personalized recommendations they won’t find on any top 10 list, empowering your guests to make the most of their holiday.
Digging even deeper to uncover the how, what, and why of your guests’ stay with you, also increases the chances of their imminent return to your holiday home in the future, while singing your praises in their review.
For many vacation rental owners, guest communication ceases the moment guests book either via an OTA or through their website. However, there are so many prime opportunities in between when you could be pumping up guests with excitement and anticipation for their impending vacation.
Below are a number of key stages throughout your guests’ journey that you might consider optimal periods of time to touch base:
Shortly after booking - an opportune moment to mention you’re more than just a listing and that you’re happy and helpful hosts welcoming them to your cottage, holiday villa, or vacation home.
Once (or thrice) before arrival - these can be breadcrumbs of information - keeping your guests in the loop of all the wondrous things to see, do, and experience throughout their stay with you!
The day of arrival - pertinent information for their anticipated arrival.
The day of departure - vital details as you bid your guests farewell.
Shortly after departure - achieve sparkling guest review status!
Mix things up by incorporating a number of different communication channels in order to fulfill your guest communications. Means of communicating with your guests might include via text message, messaging apps like WhatsApp as well as email.
Another fantastic way to fulfill your guest communications is via a digital guidebook, of course! We’ll explore later on how a Touch Stay digital guidebook marries need-to-know information with tailored recommendations for your guests’ wants and needs throughout their stay with you.
Spending time on building out your own guest communications flow from the get go, gets the ball rolling in creating an amazing guest experience. In a nutshell, strong guest communications help you to run your vacation rental property more efficiently, while building up guest loyalty in the process.
Reflecting on what guest communications has meant to you in the past when staying in vacation rentals as a guest yourself, can bring awareness to your guests’ wants and needs. It can also help you relate back to your ‘why’ when putting into practice your own guest journey.
Pain points often reveal themselves when you least expect it while running your holiday let business. Bringing awareness to potential roadblocks you might run into, can make them easier to spot and resolve as you face them.These might include:
Ceaseless guest questions
Wires crossed between guest and host
Vague check-in processes and procedures
Bland property listing
So how do you tackle these pain points? Easy - with a digital guidebook! A digital guest welcome book solves these potential irritants to your business, while offering so much more.
Gone are the days of your guestbook serving as just another instruction manual for how to operate your property’s dishwasher. A digital guidebook replaces your mangled and tattered (and perhaps out of date!) house manual. Presented in an accessible, easy-to-use format, a digital guest welcome book is also easy to update and even easier to share with your guests.
In addition to creating a meaningful guest experience by way of personalized recommendations, guests love the convenience and ease a digital guidebook delivers as the centralized source for all pertinent information pertaining to their stay. Not to mention, it positions you as the knowledge expert of the who, what, where, when, and why of your city or township!
Addressing frequently asked questions within your digital guidebook by way of adding a handy dandy FAQ category (after you’ve tackled your essentials first, of course!) leads to fewer guest questions. It also helps you win back valuable time to manage your short term rental (STR)!
Better yet, with Touch Stay’s guest alert system Memo 1.0, you can send your guests scheduled emails or text messages, directing them to highly specific information deep within your guidebook. So if guests have a must-see activity on their list, or want to know what’s included and what’s not included as part of their stay, you can point your guests directly to this information.
A digital guest welcome book is also easily editable, and entirely customizable to match your property’s branding. Adding personalized recommendations for how guests can best make use of their time during their stay with you has never been easier. So when a cute new Italian bistro opens up just around the corner from your holiday pad, updating your digital guidebook with a link to their website’s reservation page is effortless.
Not to mention, a digital guidebook is accessible offline. Including thorough instructions on how guests can add your digital guidebook to their smartphone prior to arrival, means more time for your guests to enjoy their roadtrip to your holiday beach home, even when faced with spotty cell reception.
Get back to running your vacation rental property and reignite your passion, with a Touch Stay digital guidebook. Our digital guidebooks serve as your guests’ must-have resource, empowering them to seek out the essential information they want and need for a stellar holiday. After all, here at Touch Stay, we’re in the business of happy and empowered guests!