What I Learned This Week About Vacation Rental Website Design

It’s hard to imagine as we are just starting to head into the holiday season, but once we had all the parties and the celebrations and the magic of holidays, there will come a Sunday in January when the magic will be all over and we all might feel a little bit deflated.

That’s the time I usually start to dream about vacations. It’s when my family starts talking about making plans to get together at some vacation destination or another. And it’s when I jump online to start looking at different vacation spots and different rental houses to see what is available and in my price range.

But here is what I’ve learned… I am only seeing the Vacation Rental websites that are doing a really good job with Search Engine Optimization, which is a key component of good vacation rental web design. Despite doing what I do, I am a pretty average internet user. If your vacation rental site or any site I’ve search for isn’t in the top 10, I am not going to click through to your site.

So here is the thing… if you are a more boutique vacation rental company who has invested in a website but no SEO odds are that no one is going to find you. It’s going to be crickets out there on the internet instead of the clamor of rental customers. And there are lots of customers out there. A recent study suggested that 87% of us will use the internet for travel planning.

So you can two things right now to fix this if you are a vacation rental manager. First, get connected with an SEO service provider… and someone who knows what they are doing and how to do it well. Second, sit back and wait. While the groundwork for SEO can be done rather quickly, it can take up to 90 days for the search engines to recognize the changes. In other words you need to start now to maximize your reach in early 2013, when the winter doldrums send us all to the computers to make reservations for summer.

What’s the moral of this lesson? It’s the same as the one that was told in Aesop’s fable of the Ant and the Grasshopper (soory about all the bug references)… with SEO, “it is wise to worry about tomorrow today.”

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