13 Replies Latest reply: Apr 1, 2019 12:22 PM by margaret RSS

    Search Position Algorithm Question

    moosebigd Active Contributor

      Our property is listed in a broad general area consisting of 11,499 listings.  We are also listed in a smaller subgroup of 230 properties.  I have been told by CS (Feibus, I already paid you your virtual donut!) that our average search position as it shows in the Market Maker reflects our position among the 11,499 listings, which numerically is not the same position in the smaller subgroup of 230. It does not appear that our search position in the smaller subgroup is proportionate to the position of the larger group. Properties listed above us in the subgroup are listed below us in the larger group and vice versa.  Could there be two different algorithms for search placement for the same property?   

        • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
          feibus Senior Contributor

          what do you mean by "smaller subgroup of 230 properties"?

            • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
              margaret CommunityAmbassador

              I believe moosebigd is located in Myrtle Beach so Myrtle Beach would be the larger group of the 11,499 listings the 230 smaller subgroup is probably a search of the resort name.
              Maybe moosebigd  sees a breakdown rather than other in "Understanding you market."

              • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                moosebigd Active Contributor

                We are in the Myrtle Beach area.  There are smaller communities within the general Myrtle Beach area. We are located within one of those smaller communities recognized by VRBO.

                  • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                    feibus Senior Contributor

                    Then if you go to the Understanding Your Market icon (cool, that just showed up!) and click that, it'll show which is the primary market for the listing.

                     

                    However, actual search position might fluctuate based on how the guest re-centers and zooms the map, what filters are chosen, etc.  There's a lot that goes into determining which property to show at each position in the search results.  But the average search position is based on the dates chosen and how your property ranks among the other properties for that particular search.

                     

                    At least that's my understanding of it.

                      • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                        moosebigd Active Contributor

                        Myrtle Beach is 50% of my market; other is 50% as well.  Never include dates or filters in my searches.  I disable the the map.  Today my search placement is 2% for all of Myrtle Beach (not complaining!) and 18% for my subgroup.  Our neighbor's property is after ours in the Myrtle Beach search, but before ours in our subgroup search.  Okay... I might understand algorithms change numbers, but actual physical placement?

                          • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                            feibus Senior Contributor

                            The "secret sauce" isn't something we get to ever see or know.

                            But they want to maximize bookings in every market by elevating those properties that book faster in response to specific search requests (and that includes whether the property books well for 2 adults/2 kids vs 3 adults/3 kids).

                            So it's not a single linear "rank" where you can ensure you're always in the same relative position as other properties in all markets where you appear, since they're using past performance to guide market placement.  So it's possible your neighbor's booking results are better when the submarket is chosen, but your results are better in the larger market.  For that specific inquiry you did, since the inquiry and filters changes things.

                             

                            Sounds like you're doing really well in your large primary market, being high enough that 50% of your bookings are coming from that large market area.

                              • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                                moosebigd Active Contributor

                                50% of our bookings in the big pond does look good, doesn't it?  But 6/12, many of which were weekend stays, not so good.  I appreciate your taking the time to respond...

                                  • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                                    feibus Senior Contributor

                                    If you don't want weekend-only stays, you can adjust your calendar settings to make stays that cover the weekend require longer stays.  Example: stays starting on Thursday and Friday are required to be 5-night stays, stays on Wed need to be 4-night stays, that kind of thing.  I do a bunch of that during high season when it's still months away to ensure I don't get too fragmented of a calendar by tiny weekend stays 8 months away.  I also raise my weekend rates... just because.

                                      • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                                        moosebigd Active Contributor

                                        Tried that, but it seems that the weekends are more appealing in the off season.  Also tried raising the weekend rates for awhile but withdrew that.  It just seems that each year we progressively struggle with getting bookings... the bane of many of us!  Oh, well... getting off topic here...

                                          • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                                            margaret CommunityAmbassador

                                            My VRs are located in Pawleys Island, a little bit south of Myrtle Beach. Your location is probably dictating those weekend stays. I also get a lot of weekends in the off season due to golfers squeezing in a few rounds then heading back home for work on Monday. I require a 3 night minimum during most of spring and fall and 7 nights during the summer. After Thanksgiving through early April, I allow a 2 night minimum (except over x-mas) On dates before and after my snowbirds those 2 night golf trips can bring in quite a bit if revenue with very little wear and tear.

                                              • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                                                moosebigd Active Contributor

                                                I agree!  Those two night rentals sustain us when the snowbirds are gone.  Our housekeeper likes it as well!  But April and May are characteristically lacking on our calendar.  June and July is what carries us through the year for bookings.  And this year we still have two open weeks in those months.  I shouldn't complain though because it gives us more time to spend in Myrtle Beach!

                                              • Re: Search Position Algorithm Question
                                                feibus Senior Contributor

                                                It does seem like a good question the forums are designed for: what do MB owners do to maximize off-season bookings?