Mistakes to Avoid when Advertising your Holiday Home Online

If you walk into a shop, it will be set out in a way that makes it easy for you to make your desired purchase. The products wouldn’t be obstructed from your reach; neither would you have to walk to a different floor to pay at the till. Similarly, if you use the internet to rent out your holiday villa, cottage or house it’s important you provide an online service, where it is easy for travellers to see what’s on offer, and book their holiday with you. In the marketing world "usability" means making it as easy as possible for a customer to buy your product.

HomeAway.co.uk provides a market place which allows you to market your holiday home to over 250 million travellers on 11 international websites. Travellers can contact you through the site and book holidays in your rental. However many owners make these common mistakes which effects their usability. Avoid the following pitfalls and travellers will find it easier to book with you.

Don't fall into the trap, avoid the following mistakes commonly made by holiday rental owners:

Inadequate property information

Remember your guests are taking a leap of faith by booking a property they have never seen before. Provide as much useful information as possible in the Property Description, to help travellers make the right decision. We also provide a Facilities Table and free text options so you can communicate extra information to travellers.


Too few photos

People are visual, and like to see what they’re getting for their money. It’s not surprising then that properties with 9-12 photos get 40% more enquiries than properties with only 4 or less. Make sure you choose attractive photographs of your home, and focus each photograph on a different room or feature of the property.

Availability calendars not up to date

This makes it difficult for travellers to book your property if they have specific dates in mind.

Not displaying your rental rates

People make their buying decisions based on pricing. Display clear rental rates, so travellers can decide whether or not they’re interested in your property. Ideally you should display rental rates for the year ahead. This will allow travellers to make early bookings.

Property not categorised properly

When you create and edit your advert make sure you tick the boxes that best describe your property and location. Tagging your property properly means it will show up under the correct search results filters, that travellers use to make refinements based on their requirements.

Slow responses

In the days of being able to book a hotel room online in a matter of minutes, travellers expect a fast and efficient service. You may want to undergo some tenant screening, to ensure the person is a suitable holiday home guest, but equally don’t frustrate travellers by leaving them hanging around.

Incorrect spelling, grammar and punctuation

This undermines your professionalism and travellers find it off putting.

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Copyright HomeAway.co.uk, September 2010