Almost three quarters of your ideal buyers (i.e. tourists and vacationers) are going to be using the internet when doing research for their upcoming getaways. According to a Toluna survey of 2,004 UK consumers, the web was involved in 85% of all travel purchases, either in the research state or when actually booking. Your website will be acting as your main sales guy who will be available to your visitors 24/7, 365 days a year. Thus, you’ll want to make sure that you’re getting the most out of this segment of your marketing strategy. So, is your vacation rental website design primed to grab the attention of future vacationers and keep them interested? What should you focus on for in a good vacation rental website design?
Fast loading pages
It doesn’t matter if your website design is the best one out there—if visitors to your site have to wait around for any page to load, you aren’t going to get too many people sticking around. In this era of new technology, people want what they want and they want it now. Test your website on a variety of browsers to make sure that the loading time is as close to instant as possible. Your vacation rental website design should be optimized for the web and should never take more than 15 seconds to load.
Have you ever gone into a store that was just so chaotic and disorganized that you ended up walking out? People don’t want to have to work to search for what they want. Once people arrive at your site, you’ll want them to stay awhile and click around. If they don’t know where to find a page, or can’t find a link, they will become impatient and leave your site. Make sure that your main menu and pages are in clear site (at the top or on the left or right) and that all of your important links are available from every page (the footer is a good place to do this). Your information needs to be accessible from every page on your site for a polished vacation rental website.
Optimize for All Resolutions
Your potential customers will be viewing your website on a variety of computers with all kinds of resolutions. Design your site to be compatible on every computer screen so that visitors can see the website in its best format. This means mobile too!!
When I say professional, I also mean “readable.” Don’t use extravagant or hard to read, unprofessional fonts. For example, Comic sans, while cute, does not give off the impression that your site should be taken seriously. Keep this in mind.
Check your links to make sure they are in working order. Nothing is worse than having a visitor leave your site simply because they clicked on what they thought was an interesting link and was taken to an error page. Yikes!
Simplicity is key. Don’t clutter up your vacation rental website design with too much text or too much content. Sometimes, less really is more. Visitors to your site don’t want to be greeted with a block of text or a page jammed with words, graphics and backgrounds. Make use of white space to make sure that your content is easy to digest and can be read quickly.
Use Images/Video Sparingly
Yes, visual media can be a great asset to your site. However, you do not want to include so many that the photos overwhelm your guest. Pick a few of your favorites that you believe will intrigue your visitors and stick with those. You can always post more photos or videos in a blog or on another page!
It is so important to make an assessment of your website often to ensure that it remains in tip-top shape for your potential customers. Why is a fine-tuned website so important? According to that Toluna survey, 29% of the respondents didn’t find travel websites easy to use and that lack of clarity was the most likely reason in buying elsewhere! Especially with the upcoming spring and summer seasons, it’s important to take a look at your website and make sure that it is optimized to its full extent to bring you leads.
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