9 Replies Latest reply: Apr 26, 2012 5:53 PM by m&jbosnia RSS

    Web-site critique game.


      I got this idea from another forum a while back.


      The idea is, is that if you post here that you would like honest community feedback on your web-site.  A fun way to help each other grow and learn more in the process.


      From what I can tell, anything goes, so don't be afraid of the opinions that might arise. 

        • Web-site critique game.

          I am new to managing our vacation home and this forum.  I would appreciate critiquing of my listing http://www.vacationrentals.com/vacation-rentals/85377.html


          Thank you in advance.

            • Web-site critique game.
              tyann Contributor



              Following are my suggestions:


              Photos - A few of the photos are dark, and they need to be brighter (the jacuzzi tub, the door and couch, and the dining table). Also, captions added if you could, expecially an explanation about the dog (does he live there full time, is the home pet friendly, etc.?).


              Rates - List your time periods with rates, don't just give a range of dates and then expect the guest to guess when the rate applies to which time period. I really have to absolutely love a property to do further work just to find out the rates for when I would like to come.


              Description - Do a grammar check and make sure you have commas and quotes in the right places. Also figure out the type of description that works for you best (long and flowery or short and to the point or clean with bullet points). Everyone has their own style, but also experiment with it. I have found when I look at listings, I would rather have the most important amenities in a bullet point format, as I want to know right away if it has what I want (bed sizes, number and types of baths, swimming pool, view, etc.). Also state how far away you are from the main attractions in your area, whether it is miles or minutes. "Close" is interperated differently - I might want to be 5 minutes from something, but your close means 20 minutes, and then I would be sorely disappointed.


              Hope this helps! I am sure others will have suggestions, too!



              Tyann Marcink

              Nature's Retreat and Canyon Retreat | www.vacationhomeinbranson.com

              Website Design and Photography | www.marcinkdesigns.com

              Handpainted Children's Room Decor | www.littleelephantcompany.com

                • Web-site critique game.

                  Thanks Tyann.  I will definitely consider your suggestions.


                  I did try to get a price range going but it would not accept my bullet format!  I did ask support for help and they commented that it looked like I got it working - They must not have read my statement that I am having issues with posting the price ranges so I gave up with Vacationrentals support!  but I will try them again.

                  • Web-site critique game.

                    P.S.  I need to edit the dog photo.  No that is my baby and I am going to add a caption of "Hunker Down and Relax".  I had a picture of my old bully at the top of the stairs with the same caption and the guests loved it when I was with a property manager. 


                    Unfortunately, we cannot add captions with the pictures..

                    • Re: Web-site critique game.
                      sfvacationhut Community All-Star

                      Tyann, you rock!  This is such a nice and thoughtful critique.


                      Hunker Down, your cabin looks really nice!  I'm not feeling energetic enough to write a critique right now, but I think Tyann gave some great ideas!


                      Also I want to applaud Hunker Down for being bold enough (and thick skinned enough!) to put his or her web site out there for public critique! You must be very brave.  Kudos to you!!!

                        • Re: Web-site critique game.

                          I am new to renting my cabin on my own and who is best to seek help but the experts! I am very passionate when it comes to my cabin (plus working in govt I could be a tad bit wordy!)


                          Ya'll have made it work for you so I truly appreciate the help and input.



                          Have a great day. Marian

                    • Re: Web-site critique game.

                      Hi guys,


                      I'm also new to this and would love some feedback.  Our place is VRBO # 411580.


                      Thanks so much!


                        • Re: Web-site critique game.
                          sophie Senior Contributor



                          I took a look at your property. Very charming. Makes me want to go to Ireland!


                          Here are some suggestions:


                          The first thing that jumps out is that it's a MANAGER run property but when I scroll down, I see you and your wife's picture saying you own the property. If you own it, it needs to be OWNER run. I think properties carry more clout when they are owner run.


                          You state the property is a 3 bedroom but only 1 is seen. And you only say there are 2 twin beds and 1 double. What is the configuration of the sleeping arrangements? Is there just a twin bed in each of other 2 bedrooms? The most important pictures and information for guests is sleeping arrangements so I would be more clear.


                          Let's talk about the photos. This is your chance to really shine. vrbo now gives us 12 pictures to show off our property. Most of your pics appear dark and gloomy. I would brighten all of them. As I said above, you should have photos of ALL bedrooms. Photos of bathrooms, hallways, cabinets should be removed. I'm not a big fan of pictures showing anything other than the home itself, ie: countryside, river, etc. And, they all appear gloomy or too dark.  Any outdoor photos should be taken with a clear blue sky and the sun shining.


                          I would move your vehicles from the front of the house and capture a closer photo of the home. It appears really small and guests may think it's small inside.


                          In your description, you say "no telephone" but I see one clearly on the dining room table. As to the dining room photo, I realize it's looks like placemats but it comes off as being cluttered. I would clear all surfaces to include kitchen counters so it doesn't appear cluttered. Is there a stove/oven? That should probably be addressed. I would guess that is doesn't because you don 't state it. This needs to be clear.


                          One last thing, I notice that the captions on your photos are either one word or nothing. I would definitely use that space to add some spice ie: instead of Dining Room.......Enjoy a cozy homecooked meal with your family in the dining room.....instead of Gas Fire......Snuggle on the leather couches enjoying the gas fire place.


                          Hope this helps. You are brave indeed!

                            • Re: Web-site critique game.

                              Thanks so much for your helpful input, Sophie!  And you're more than welcome to come visit, anytime!  We will definitely take some more pictures next time we're out there.  And that's a good idea about brightening the photos!


                              I guess I assumed that if we weren't there on a daily basis to run things, then it would be run by a property manager?  We have a friend taking care of things while we're gone (including the logistics involved in having renters in and out, keys, etc).  But, we are definitely the owners! 


                              To answer your question, the kitchen does have a stove/oven.  I thought we marked full-kitchen or listed it in the amenities section, but I'll double check to make sure.


                              Thanks again.  Appreciate your suggestions!