The vacation rental industry has become increasingly competitive in recent years, with a growing number of property owners and managers offering their properties for rent. This has created a crowded marketplace, driving the need for property owners to differentiate themselves and stand out from the competition. According to research, the global vacation rental market was valued at $91.2 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach $315 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 12.4% from 2022 to 2031. Additionally, according to Statista, 75% of total revenue will be generated through online sales by 2027.
Why should you list your property on OTAs?
Listing your property on an online travel agency (OTA) such as Airbnb or VRBO can offer a range of benefits. Perhaps most important is their ability to quickly increase the exposure of your property to a wider audience of potential guests. By utilizing the platform's large user base, user-friendly booking process, and global reach, you can connect with guests from all over the world, while also enjoying the convenience of having a trusted third-party handle the majority of the booking process. Additionally, many OTAs provide valuable data and analytics to help you understand your property's performance and make informed decisions about pricing, marketing, and improving your property. Overall, listing on an OTA can be a valuable investment for those looking to maximize their rental income and grow their business.
There are several reasons why you may want to list your property on an online travel agency (OTA), such as Airbnb or VRBO:
- Increased Exposure: OTAs have a large user base and can provide significant exposure for your property. By listing your property on an OTA, you can reach a wider range of potential guests who may not have found your property through other channels.
- Convenience: OTAs handle the majority of the booking process for you, including payment processing, customer service, and dispute resolution. This can save you time and effort, allowing you to focus on managing your property.
- Access to a Global Market: OTAs have a global reach, allowing you to connect with guests from all over the world. This can increase your chances of finding guests and filling your rental calendar.
- Data and Analytics: Many OTAs provide data and analytics to help you understand your property's performance, such as occupancy rates and revenue generated. This information can help you make informed decisions about pricing, marketing, and improving your property.
- Increased Trust: OTAs have built a level of trust with their users, and guests are often more comfortable booking through a well-known platform rather than directly through an individual property owner.
While there's many benefits to listing on an OTA, it's important to consider the costs involved, including the commission fees charged by the OTA and the additional responsibilities that come with managing a short-term rental property.
Things to do Before Listing Your Property on Airbnb or VRBO.
When listing your property on Airbnb or VRBO, there are several important factors to consider to ensure a successful rental experience:
- Legal Requirements: Make sure you understand the local regulations and laws surrounding short-term rentals in your area, including any licensing requirements, taxes, and insurance needs. It is important to note that some localities do not allow to operate vacation rentals from their neighborhoods.
- Property Type: Determine the type of property you have, such as a vacation home, apartment, or guest room, and make sure it meets the requirements for listing on the platform.
- Accurate Listing Information: Provide accurate and detailed information about your property, including photos, description, location, and amenities. Make sure your listing is up-to-date and reflects any changes to your property.
- Pricing Strategy: Determine a pricing strategy that is competitive and aligns with the local market. Take into consideration the time of year, local events, and demand when setting your prices.
- House Rules: Establish clear and concise house rules to ensure a positive rental experience for both you and your guests. This can include rules around smoking, pets, and noise levels.
- Cleanliness and Maintenance: Make sure your property is clean and well-maintained before and after each rental. Consider hiring a cleaning service to help with this.
- Communication: Be prepared to respond promptly to inquiries and requests from potential guests, and be available to address any issues that may arise during the rental period.
By considering these factors and taking steps to ensure a successful rental experience, you can increase your chances of attracting bookings and earning a good return on your investment.
Airbnb vs VRBO key hosting differences
Airbnb and VRBO are two of the largest online travel agencies (OTAs) for vacation rentals, and while both platforms allow you to list your property and connect with potential guests, there are some key differences between the two:
- Commission Fees: Airbnb charges a service fee to the guest, which ranges from 14% to 20% of the total booking cost. VRBO charges a listing fee and a service fee, both of which are typically lower than Airbnb's fees. However, VRBO may also charge a booking fee, which can add to the cost for guests.
- Target Market: Airbnb has a younger, more budget-conscious target market, while VRBO attracts a more affluent, family-oriented demographic.
- Property Types: Airbnb has a large focus on unique and quirky accommodations, such as treehouses, yurts, and houseboats. VRBO is geared towards traditional vacation rentals, including villas, cottages, and apartments.
- User Experience: Airbnb has a more user-friendly and intuitive booking process, while VRBO offers more robust tools and resources for property owners, including detailed analytics and data.
- Marketing and Promotion: Airbnb has a larger user base and more resources dedicated to marketing and promotion, while VRBO has a more established reputation and brand recognition in the vacation rental industry.
Ultimately, the best choice between Airbnb and VRBO will depend on your specific needs and goals as a property owner. Consider your target market, the type of property you have, and your budget when making a decision, and consider listing on both platforms if it makes sense for your business.
Should I List on Airbnb or VRBO? Why not both?
Listing on both Airbnb and VRBO can be a smart choice for property owners who want to maximize their exposure, occupancy, and revenue. Here are some reasons why listing on both platforms could be beneficial:
- Reach: By listing on both Airbnb and VRBO, you can reach a wider audience of potential guests and increase the chances of your property being rented. Each platform has its own unique user base, and listing on both can help you tap into both markets.
- Increased visibility: Listing on multiple platforms will increase your visibility and make it more likely that potential guests will find your property when searching for a vacation rental.
- Diversification: Listing on both platforms can help diversify your income streams and reduce the impact of changes to one platform's policies or algorithms.
- Price Optimization: By listing on both platforms, you can compare the performance of your property on each and make adjustments to pricing, marketing, and other factors to optimize your results.
However, it's important to note that listing on multiple platforms requires additional time, effort, and resources, including maintaining accurate and up-to-date information on each platform, responding to inquiries and booking requests, and managing calendars and availability. Before listing on both Airbnb and VRBO, make sure you have the resources and capability to manage multiple listings effectively.