The best way to dazzle potential guests is with professional and eye-catching photos, but how can you ensure your photos reflect the beauty of your property? We know that travelers browsing vacation rental listings are first attracted to crisp, clear, well-staged and well-lit photos. Perfecting your photos will not only improve the quality of your, listing but also the number of inquiries you receive. Spending a little bit of extra time on marketing by taking top-notch photos is an investment in your vacation rental business. Here are our favorite tips on a picture perfect process:
- Get photos of each room, the exterior, and the view
The more areas of your house you can feature, the more confidence a potential guest will have when booking. Not surprisingly, a great view is always a major draw. Guests will pay more for a fabulous view, and you should showcase this must-have amenity in your listing. Also make sure to include an exterior shot. Display your unique architecture and/or your gorgeous garden. Photos of the living room and kitchen are essential as this is the bonus space guests are getting by choosing a vacation rental over a hotel. Let your guests see where they will be cooking and where they will be relaxing. Include a picture of the master and every additional bedroom as well – this encourages renters to envision themselves, and each member of their party, in their respective sleeping quarters.
- Remove clutter and ensure there are no people or pets
It’s important to stage your photos to show your home in the best possible light. Some easy tricks to making a magazine spread style photo shoot are to set your dining room table as if for a dinner party, and make good use of colorful pillows and throws on your living room furniture. It may sound obvious, but make sure all of your surfaces are clutter free. Also ensure the televisions are turned off and all your wall hangings are perfectly straight. A great photographer’s trick is to arrange the furniture so that it all fits in the shot. And finally, it’s best to allow the renter to imagine herself in the property, so omit any photos of people and pets.
- Brighten your room
Natural light creates the most appealing photos so it’s important to consider where the sun is in the sky when you shoot, especially for the outdoor shots. You will want the sun behind you for your exterior shots. Midday is a good time for interior photos. A clear cloudless sky will create the best effect. If you do not have great natural illumination indoors, just be sure to turn on all the lamps and overhead lights, as well as light any fireplaces.
- Use high-quality photos
If you’ve taken your photos with a decent digital camera, they should be good quality snaps. However many people have questions about how to change their photos to the appropriate size for vacation rental listing sites. We recommend photos be 1024x768 pixels and 4.5MB or less. Here is a good resource for learning how to resize your photos once you have uploaded them to your computer. (http://m.wikihow.com/Resize-Digital-Photos) When editing your photos, do not add any borders, watermarks, arrows, or text.
Whether you choose to invest in a professional photographer or engage your artistic side and take your own shots, it is essential to recognize that photos are what will sell your property to potential guests.