The importance of reviews
Reviews matter to travelers and will help you gain trust and credibility. Be sure to request a review from each and every guest who stays with you. Why? Travelers look for them; reviews from past guests give travelers confidence when booking your vacation rental. Reviews aid in establishing trust and credibility. A vacation rental is a big expense for the average family. Prospective renters want to read reviews of your home from past guests to reassure them that the home is depicted accurately.
Build instant trust with potential renters by getting past guests to write reviews of their stay at your home. We also encourage you to respond to less-than-positive reviews so that you can help other potential renters put the review into context. Every vacation rental is different. Reviews are even more important for vacation rentals because the traveler isn't considering two or three brand name hotels; they're comparing vacation homes rented by individual owners.
How to get more reviews
We spoke to several vacation rental owners who've shown a knack for getting their guests to post reviews. We rounded up their best advice below.
Recognize that positive reviews generate more positive reviews
“Guests have told me they definitely feel better renting from a private homeowner having read other guests positive experiences, and I've found that the guests who mention they booked because of the online comments generally turn out to be my best renters. They've done their research and are looking for a great experience. And if the guest has a great experience, they are going to be most appreciative and more than willing to comment in our online guestbook.”
–Debbie T (VRBO #82395, 206 reviews and counting)
Mention your reviews from your very first interaction with a potential guest
“When responding to inquiries, we always mention our reviews, and provide a link to them in our response letter. I also use it as a closing tool. When someone has expressed an interest in our property, we also remind them to check out our guestbook. This lets them know that we consider this important to our business. Someone told me once that the longer you can keep a potential customer on your website, the greater the odds of booking. The guestbook is great at that. When someone emails me that they are considering several properties, I direct them to our guestbook which gives us an extra ‘push' in that kind of situation.”
–Steve J VRBO
Establish a personal connection
If you live in the area, meet your guests face to face upon arrival when you can. Knowing that you are a real person who actually cares really helps travelers feel comfortable in your rental, especially first time renters!
Reviews go both ways!
After the stay is completed, owners and travelers will receive an email with a link that asks them to review their experience. Neither party will be able to see each other’s ratings until they both have submitted the review. Learn more.
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*Last Updated April 17, 2018