The Most Important Tool in Your Arsenal
Photos determine the first impression of your property, making them the most important tool to increase your bookings. Do you have plenty of images of your property? Are they appealing to prospective visitors? Where could improvements be made? These are the questions property managers should continually ask themselves. Potential guests use photos at nearly every step in their travel decision process. If your photos are inadequate a potential guests’ consideration stops there.
An ideal photo collection is the most effective tool at your disposal. It is important to have a minimum of 20 photos, making sure every room and feature of your property has at least one picture representation. According to one Tnooz article, “travelers are 150% more engaged on listings with 20+ photos, than those with only a few photos.” Be sure to include any enticing seasonal outdoor features or views. The minimum is 20 photos but remember more is always better. As another Tnooz article proclaimed, “doubling a hotel’s online pictures can result in 4.5% take-up and $3.50 higher ADR.” Enable potential customers to visualize their vacation stay by giving them plenty of visual representation to work with.
Make your first impression as professional as possible. Even though you could buy a high-quality camera that professionals use, you will find more success from hiring a professional photographer. Along with the equipment, professional photographers come with the knowledge and experience to take a variety of fantastic professional photos.
Every property on every channel has a hero image. This is the first image a prospective guest sees when viewing your property. Guarantee your property has its best foot forward with a high-quality hero image. The key to a great hero image is to highlight the most important features of your property.
Some Good Options Include: Living Spaces, Pools, or Views
Rande Gross, National Account Manager for LeisureLink, has seen the dramatic effects photos can have on a property listing. Rande explains, “One of my properties was down more than 70% YOY and I’d tried everything. Finally, I went myself and took new photos. Immediately after posting those photos their sales turned around. They were up 38% YOY within the first two weeks and it has continued to go up since then. I can’t stress the importance of photos in driving sales through all channels.”
High quality pictures are also a key factor in your OTA rankings. Having plenty of high quality photos, highlighting your properties best features, is taken into account in your OTA rankings. When you rank high on an OTA your exposure to potential customers is increased exponentially, with the end result being increased revenue and brand awareness. Additionally, boosting your brands awareness will have the added benefit of increasing your direct bookings. A solid photo collection is an important tool in your arsenal. Don’t let it go to waste.