Content can often feel overwhelming to produce, but when written with intent, vacation rental managers have the incredible opportunity to boost their brand, integrate their marketing efforts, and grow their businesses.
When planning and creating content, you may feel like you’re already behind. Instead, take a step back and focus on serving a purpose. To do that, consider why you’re writing a particular piece. Are you trying to generate reservations, attract new travelers who may not know your brand, or connect with past guests? Once you decide on the goals, consider how travelers will find your website on search engines and then tailor content to achieve this goal and appeal to searching travelers.
- Transactional Queries drive direct-bookings, so they are the most important. For example, when people search, “cape cod beachfront rentals,” they are looking to rent a home on Cape Cod. Because transactional queries are vital to your business, you’ll want to focus your efforts first and foremost on creating content for these types of queries: your homepage, property category pages, specials, etc.
- Informational Queries connect with potential guests when they are looking for things to do in the area. A traveler might search, “Cape Cod Labor Day.” By creating content that connects with their search, you are broadening the amount of exposure for your brand.
- Navigational Queries are branded queries. If travelers already know who you are, they will type your business name into Google. In this case, your Google My Business page, your site links, your title, and your meta descriptions are places where navigational queries can have an impact. A lot of search queries on Google are navigational and they develop brand recognition.
Writing with Intent Case Study: Martha Murray Real Estate and Vacation Rentals has been independent and locally owned for 35+ years with over 300 properties on Cape Cod. This past year, they have revamped their content strategy and aimed at transactional and informational search queries to drive reservations. They chose to create clear and concise landing pages, including one for beachfront properties, that are true to their brand while also focusing on their goals.
By the end of the year, they were the second listing when users searched “Cape Cod Beachfront Rentals” on Google and their beachfront page became one of their highest volume pages with a 600 percent increase in new users year over year.
Additionally, they created “Martha Murray’s Beachfront Events Pages.” Over the course of the year, there have been 17,000 page views from the search query, “Cape Cod Events,” a great example of increasing results with quality content. Events pages made for informational content can lead to transactions, yet events are interesting because they are timely when travelers are often visiting your destination for concerts, festivals, sports, holidays, etc.
For example, Martha Murray’s landing page for “Cape Cod Labor Day” ranks number two in Google search. This page goes the extra mile by providing the schedule of events and useful information for travelers. Another example is the search query, “Cape Cod Barnstable Fair 2018,” which is a large event located right near Dennis, MA. Martha Murray created a page for this event and it ranks number one in Google search with valuable information like a schedule for travelers.
Summary: Focus on building content with three considerations in mind, to reach travelers searching for lodging, those searching for experiences, and those who know your brand. Initially create content that drives reservations, such as homepage, property category pages, specials and promotions, or other landing pages that promote specific properties. From there, expand the strategy to include informational content based on search queries for activities, events, and things to do in your area. This strategy will accelerate year-over-year website traffic, conversions, and revenue. In the competitive vacation rental landscape, it can be challenging to compete against OTAs and their enormous budgets, yet vacation rental managers can extend their presence, leverage their local expertise, and grow their brand with qualified content.
Bluetent is a digital agency with a passion for reaching travelers, inspiring guests, and attracting owners. Our team firmly believes in providing vacation rental managers with effective online marketing strategies to elevate their businesses. Rezfusion, our eCommerce platform, delivers a seamless user experience with direct-booking websites, distribution solutions, guest experience tools, and marketing services. The robust platform currently supports 250+ vacation rental providers and generates $400 million in annual online reservations. Rezfusion fully integrates with leading property management software, is PCI-compliant, and is designed to motivate travelers to book. With a growing team of 80+ individuals who inspire our culture, we’re Outside Magazine’s “Best Place to Work” seven years running and we strive to efficiently evolve travel and hospitality businesses to generate sustainable growth for our clients.