23 Replies Latest reply: Feb 16, 2020 11:19 PM by swlinphx RSS

    New search parameters...

    dbcondo204 Contributor

      Doesn't appear that renters are  able to sort by price?  And it appears the search defaults to Instant Booking rentals.

        • Re: New search parameters...
          wildiris Senior Contributor

          I just checked.  I don't see ANY sort options.  This is terrible!  As a traveler, I always use the sort "number of reviews" in my searches and I know other travelers like using other sort options.  I'd say Vrbo was shooting itself in the foot, but with all of the recent "glitches" it's worse than that.  I feel as though Vrbo has opened a vein and is slowly committing suicide (and taking owners with it).

           

          One good piece of news - when I checked, it did not default to IB rentals only.  I had to click on that if I wanted to see only rentals with IB in my search.

          • Re: New search parameters...
            ha-moderator-amanda HomeAway Employee

            Hi dbcondo204 and wildiris, I've shared this with leadership to learn more. Yesterday I did a test search on www.vrbo.com and www.homeaway.com, and neither page displayed the option to sort the results; however, today I did see the option to sort on vrbo.com. I'm waiting for more information about this and we'll follow up as soon as possible.

            • Re: New search parameters...
              ha-moderator-amanda HomeAway Employee

              Hello dbcondo204, I just received confirmation that this is part of a test that they're running, and that's why I saw it on vrbo.com and not homeaway.com earlier. Apparently very few travelers use the 'sort' option.

                • Re: New search parameters...
                  wildiris Senior Contributor

                  Thank you for checking, ha-moderator-amanda.  I was wondering if it might be another A/B test.  Sigh ....  For me as a traveler, not having sort options makes searching much more difficult and time-consuming.  With all of the IT problems and additional expense associated with booking through Vrbo, I'm beginning to think it's not worth it for me as a traveler.

                  • Re: New search parameters...
                    happyfeet Contributor

                    Amanda and wildIrus

                     

                    I'm an owner but I wanted to vacation elsewhere. Of course, I basically knew what I wanted. When I'm searching, I like to search one resort condominium property at a time. There might be 100 to 200 units listed to choose from at each property. I also like to have them sorted by a method that is hopefully consistent so that if I want to look again at a certain resort a few days later -- I want the order (top to bottom) to stay basically the same. I chose to sort by price -"Low to High" and I got used to using that method. Well I can't use that method anymore. I know I can enter a price range as a filter but I don't know if that works for me. I don't want to spend all my time entering filters over and over again.

                     

                    Also for my own listing -- it doesn't show up near the top naturally but I do like it showing up near the top If I select one of the popular sort choices --like price low to high. That way I know some savvy searchers will find my listing easily.

                     

                    Did these thoughts trigger anyone else to comment?

                      • Re: New search parameters...
                        sward6880 Contributor

                        I just tried and was able to choose from the “usual” range of sort options.   In an area such as ours with over 40,000 listings then even having applied filters there are loads to choose from.   From experience this is a highly price sensitive market so to be able to sort by price is crucial.

                          • Re: New search parameters...
                            wildiris Senior Contributor

                            That's how A/B tests operate.  Different users see different formats.  I assume that they are selected at random, but I don't know.  I just looked at Vrbo again and I don't have any sort options.  Although you see the sort options when you search, someone else searching your market may not see them.

                              • Re: New search parameters...
                                hhirental2 Contributor

                                I agree, the searches need to go back on the frontsearch page.  I as a traveler always sort by reviews, once I have narrowed down my choices a bit.  And in my mind  a property that has 50 4 star reviews would probably rank higher than a property with only 1 review, even if it's a 5*.  Travelers need to be able to sort based on whatever is most important to them, and since this is the computer age and can sort on basically any criteria wanted, the traveler should be given the choice.  In your big resort markets, there are thousands of choices--the quickest way for VRBO to lose a traveler is to make it difficult for us to find what we want. 

                            • Re: New search parameters...
                              happyfeet Contributor

                              To All

                              Is there anyone on the forum who likes it the way it is now? It wouldn't surprise me if there are not any. But if you do like it this way -- could you please tell me why? What do you think are the advantages?

                              Happyfeet

                                • Re: New search parameters...
                                  garcar14 New Member

                                  happyfeet

                                  Good question.  I've tried to think of possible reasons why eliminating the basic sort options, that seemed logical, and replacing them with offering alternate date/length of stay options could be helpful...can't think of a single good reason.

                                  To begin their search, a traveler has already specified dates they are seeking - and now, rather than receiving information that helps to NARROW the choices -  they receive, instead, options that only serve to INCREASE the number of choices.  It would be one thing, if the dates selected by a traveler only resulted in a very small number of possible properties to choose from - then - perhaps expanding the date range, or length of stay could possibly be a consideration.

                                  I would imagine that this is RARELY, if ever, the case. 

                                  Sadly, it seems that such a "test" just isn't really thought out.  Of course, particularly annoying when it directly has negative impact on property owners, who have paid good money for a service that should HELP to guide travelers to narrow their choices and then move to action and book.

                                  Can only hope that someone at HomeAway/VRBO can review/ realize the misguided reasoning of this "test".

                                    • Re: New search parameters...
                                      garcar14 New Member

                                      happy feet

                                      In fact - your question would be an especially good question for an actual  response from HomeAway/VRBO.  Could someone provide a response regarding WHY HomeAway/VRBO think these changes would be helpful?  Actual reasons. If educated regarding the reasoning behind the "test", we could somehow appreciate the possible benefit resulting from it, and  be more willing to accept what seems to be a totally illogical "test". Given that our properties (read we)  are the guinea pigs, it doesn't seem a lot to ask.  So - could a moderator please ask/provide for us actual reasons given by the folks that are conducting this particular test?

                              • Re: New search parameters...
                                garcar14 New Member

                                I would also strongly agree that those search options remain in place.  This is especially true in locations where there are high numbers of properties available. It is little surprise that sites such as Amazon / eBay use these most basic "sort by" options as a means to very quickly assist the buyer (vacationer) to zero in on potential products.  These most basic sort options are vital - why do we need keep making it harder? 

                                • Re: New search parameters...
                                  garcar14 New Member

                                  I find it VERY hard to believe that "...Apparently very few travelers use the 'sort' option".  When confronted with  several thousand properties in a given location, using a search option - especially ordered by price - helps a traveler quickly be able to make  apples to apples comparison.  Again - Amazon uses  this option - call me crazy , but I think Amazon just might have superior statistical evidence to support using those very logical sort options. 

                                  PLEASE RETURN THEM IMMEDIATELY !!

                                    • Re: New search parameters...
                                      hhirental2 Contributor

                                      As a traveler, I always want to sort by number of reviews and/or price.  Average review doesn't really help because there are at most 5 categories to choose from, and most listings fall within the top 3.  In my area, after filtering for the following: house, 4*, premier partner, 3+ bedrooms, pool and private pool, I still come up with 112 properties available for a particular week. As far as the other filters, ALL the houses have the same amenities.  If you don't allow for sorting by price and number of reviews (which in my opinion is a very valid basis to make a decision), I think most travelers will give up.  I would.

                                    • Re: New search parameters...
                                      garcar14 New Member

                                      So now I see that with the elimination (hopefully only a test) of the logical one click sort options for order by price or reviews  - that travelers are instead now confronted by a half dozen alternate date/length of stay range choices....Didn't the traveler just enter dates of interest?   Does this make sense? Thought the idea is to HELP travelers quickly NARROW their search, and hence increase the likelihood of moving to action to actually book. Who thinks of these things?  Could we make it more challenging?  Any ideas...maybe block out every other word  in each property description?  Perhaps a strobe light effect to make all photos a guessing game?

                                      I'm sure there are plenty of studies to advise how many minutes a traveler will invest before becoming frustrated...and just booking a room at the Hilton instead!

                                      Please bring back the basic "sort by" options.

                                      • Re: New search parameters...
                                        hhirental2 Contributor

                                        any update from HA on whether sorts are going back on the screen...this is a very busy booking time for many of your owners...a poor time in my mind to run an experiment like this.