11 Replies Latest reply: Jul 11, 2019 3:02 PM by bonsai.cliffs RSS

    Now totally confused about Boost!

    floridarob Active Contributor

      I would really appreciate ANY help I can get on this, because right now I am scratching my head trying to understand what is going on.

       

      For anyone who has been following my discussion... complaining... whining(?) about my inability to use Boost because of the size of my primary market, well here is a bit of news; I actually was able to use Boost and spend some of my powerups! So, on the one hand; YAY!!! Hope it works!  On the other hand; What the heck? I'm totally confused!

       

      First, a bit of background. We were told by Erinn that a property would only be able to use Boost if they were in the top 1000 of properties in their Primary Market. That is not me, for two reasons; my market rank is down currently (only around top 10% instead of top 2%) and there are around 44,000 properties in my primary market so it is really hard to crack the top 1000.

      Screen Shot 2019-04-15 at 12.37.38 AM.jpg

       

      What that means is that on my MarketMaker Dashboard screen, if I look at a set of dates, I won't see a search position, because apparently a search position only will show if we are in the top 1000 of properties. This is what I normally see:

       

      NormalSearchPosition.png

       

      Just a bunch of dashes in the Search Position row.

       

      This evening, while I was snooping around on my Dashboard, I clicked on the MarketMaker screen and this is what I was greeted with: A Search Position!  I have never seen this before!

       

      SearchPosition.jpg

       

      Note that the screenshot was taken AFTER I boosted Thursday -18th, which is why the green arrow is showing there. But the big point here is that for the first time ever, I was actually seeing a 'Your avg. search position' range in the row, instead of the usual dash.

       

      When I clicked on the 18th to see what would happen, I got the 'Boost' pop-up and spent the maximum Powerups I could to boost it, although it didn't change its apparent search position very much. No matter, I was willing to spend the maximum amount possible to get whatever Boost I could get for these very near remaining dates (which are high season in Orlando and I have NEVER had open before! Meaning, they ALWAYS get booked, but not this year with a week to go!) that I DO want booked!

       

      Boost18th.jpeg

      So I spent the 288 Power-ups and boosted the 18th, which should also help the 16th & 17th. Fair enough... hope it works.

       

      Then I clicked on the 22nd, which also had a search position showing, and this is what I encountered.

       

      NoBoost!.jpg

      No boost in the search position, even if I spend 274 Power-ups. This was confirmed when I clicked 'Apply':

       

      Screen Shot 2019-04-15 at 1.40.38 AM.jpg

       

      The forecasted search position would be no different than the previous existing Search position. So with apparently there being no value in spending the Power-ups, I clicked cancel and that was that.

       

      I checked the MarketMaker calendar going forward two years, and I have no other dates showing a search position range. My other property has NO Search position numbers at all anywhere.

       

      Which all leaves me with the following questions, in an absolutely confused order:

       

      1) Why did a search range appear on these five dates, giving me access to the Boost feature?

      2) What does the search range mean? I understand 176-200, but out of what? All 44,000 properties in my Primary Market?

      3) Does this mean that Search position varies at different times? Why, how, and according to what? What drives/controls the search position?

      4) Is my search position for these dates now in the 'top 1000' because all of the properties with a better market rank than my own are already booked for these dates?

      4a) And I'm now in the range of 186-210 of the properties that are left?

      4b) Is that a range of properties similar to mine, or ALL properties within the market? (so confused...)

      5) It seemed that I was spending a lot of Power-ups for not much of a change in search position. How does this compare to other owner's experience (please)?

      6) Why would spending Power-ups on Monday 22nd produce no change?

      6b) Why would the system allow me (apparently) to spend the Power-ups if it would result in no improvement? (seems like bad design)

       

      I may add some more questions if I think of them. But if anyone can provide some insight into any of this, I would really appreciate it!

       

      Thanks!

        • Re: Now totally confused about Boost!
          ashevillelookout Senior Contributor

          I hope that you get a moderator or someone at HA to answer your questions.

           

          IMO, Boost and the other tools that are meant to increase our position in the rankings are simply ways to "entertain" the VR Owner.  I don't think that it does anything.  If the mysterious search algorithm puts you in the view of the prospective traveler, you may get a booking.  But I think that the whole system is just like a lottery drawing and we are all tossed about in the big box....rising to the top only on occasion.

           

          I have decided to stop worrying about market position, rankings, boost, opportunities to adjust my pricing etc.  I will just keep improving my property, finding other ways to attract guests, and let the HA games go by the wayside.  I have a life, and it no longer involves trying to figure out what HA is doing now.

          • Re: Now totally confused about Boost!
            hbrcondo8c New Member

            I agree with ashevillelookout - I think that we all know that if we were not placed behind all PM's and realtors - if VRBO or vrbo or whatever we are now - really valued the true HOMEOWNER we would not be scrambling to figure out the newest trick the quant geeks invent to "help" us get bookings. Now totally confused about Boost!@

            • Re: Now totally confused about Boost!
              dramsey Contributor

              Same frustrations here. I especially was confused on how many points I needed to use to boost - 50, 100, more? I don't see the value in this. We follow the rules, we book through the platform and we had a great position. Now, not so much.

              • Re: Now totally confused about Boost!
                floridarob Active Contributor

                I'm bumping my own thread because I really would like an answer to my questions from one of the HA moderators.  It took me a great deal of time to document the situation and post the questions.

                 

                I realize that many owners have simply elected to not 'sweat' the workings of this program because they actually have lives outside of HomeAway and their property (lucky them!) but I am really curious about this.

                 

                And by the way, the boost, if it worked, didn't make a difference. For the first time in seven years, I had part of the Easter season left unbooked.

                 

                So please:

                1) Why did a search range appear on these five dates, giving me access to the Boost feature?

                2) What does the search range mean? I understand 176-200, but out of what? All 44,000 properties in my Primary Market?

                3) Does this mean that Search position varies at different times? Why, how, and according to what? What drives/controls the search position?

                4) Is my search position for these dates now in the 'top 1000' because all of the properties with a better market rank than my own are already booked for these dates?

                4a) And I'm now in the range of 186-210 of the properties that are left?

                4b) Is that a range of properties similar to mine, or ALL properties within the market? (so confused...)

                5) It seemed that I was spending a lot of Power-ups for not much of a change in search position. How does this compare to other owner's experience (please)?

                6) Why would spending Power-ups on Monday 22nd produce no change?

                6b) Why would the system allow me (apparently) to spend the Power-ups if it would result in no improvement? (seems like bad design)

                • Re: Now totally confused about Boost!
                  floridarob Active Contributor

                  Further down the 'rabbit hole'...

                   

                  Well 'Boost' was available to me again for some dates in June. And just as before, I can't understand why, at least based on the information that has been posted here on this forum by (former) moderators.

                   

                  Why/how could my search ranking be less than 1000 at any time, when my Market Rank is around 4,500? There have been some suggestions that filters could affect search rankings, but this makes no sense... WHO'S filters, and when and why do they apply to affect the search ranking that appears on my dashboard?

                   

                  In order to humour Meriah, I will call Customer Service and 'record' the conversation, and report back the answers here. But seriously, I really don't expect any answers that make any sense, as this forum is always the last resort for owners frustrated with what they are told by customer service (and which often is contradicted here or proves to be wrong) and the information provided here about Boost has been confusing, contradictory, and not backed-up or support by anything other than 'trust us, we're working on it'.