Makeover Session 2.8: Holly & Alanna's Progress Reports | VRMB
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Makeover Session 2.8: Holly & Alanna’s Progress Reports

Note: This post is part of the VR Marketing Makeover. You can see all posts in this category by clicking here.

Below I’m sharing feedback from both Holly and Alanna on their progress in this, the first 3 months of their vacation rental website makeoves since our big reveals.

I’ve also shared a glimpse at their web traffic (we installed Google Analytics) to show the core metric that directly influences your success: the more quality web traffic, the more organic inquiries that you can turn into bookings.

My hope is that by being transparent with Holly and Alanna’s mini victories and common setbacks, everyone can see that building a web presence for your vacation rental is not an overnight ‘magic pill’ but neither is it rocket science.

Holly’s Progress Report: Success With Blogging

Matt’s Summary: Holly has progressed primarily in the blogging area with a few posts that have really done well to convey trust and authority to prospective guests. She’s also finding a hidden benefit of these blog posts – saving time by sending the blog link instead of writing out the frequently asked question. Holly also sealed her first booking through her website: the moment she crossed that threshold, her website had “paid for itself.”
Holly's Web Traffic Since We Started

Holly’s Web Traffic Since We Started

“So far I’ve gotten three inquiries through my site YosemiteStay.com.

Those converted into one booking for 7 nights (and about $1600 in revenue).

I had a guest say to me “Any questions I had you already answered at your website,” which was awesome! This was a direct result from The Best Blogging Formula Ever.

At least three guests mentioned (WITHOUT me pointing them in that direction) that they read my blog post on choosing an airport and it helped them a lot.

At least three different guests said (after I suggested they check out my blog posts) that they felt very well taken care of.

I really feel these comments are a direct result of my three blog posts (roads closures or not, restaurant choices, and the airport post mentioned above) and my activity listing on my webpage.

We always take good care of people, but I have noticed a marked change since these three articles have been available to them.

This month, when I have been my busiest for the entire year, I felt the website saved me at least six hours in responding to basic questions. Some days I use the links more than once per day.

I still respond to all my guests, but I can just put a link in to the response, which is faster and easier. Then I can say one thing about the topic (short and easy) and they feel they got some extra custom help.

I didn’t make a website before now because I pictured it an “all or nothing” investment.

And honestly, I haven’t put extra time into my website in the recent weeks either.

But getting started and plugging away is what matters.

I am happy to see that with the time I have put in, I have some benefits and it encourages me to do more.

I continue to have great results sending my guests to the website to get activity info and answer FAQs.

P.S. The airport blog post scored again this week with a booking.

Alanna: Discouraged, Still Looking To Build Momentum

Matt’s Summary: Because her rental is fully booked, Alanna has been slow to increase steam…which is having a negative effect in not generating any tangible results just yet. Having understood from the beginning that the website building process is a “slow and steady” one, it’s important for Alanna to keep implementing best practices, continue blogging, building backlinks, and doing outreach. There’s simply no way to generate bookings if you don’t have quality web traffic flowing through your site.

Alanna's Web Traffic Since We Started

Okay, I have not been as active with my Princeville Vacation Rental website as Holly.

To date I have received one inquiry and no bookings.

I will start referring my guests to my website (like Holly) and I think/hope I will get some good feedback that way also.

Feeling a bit discouraged at the moment…..and like I have let you guys down.

I know that the more you invest the more results you get and for me I think that is going to come in the form of blogging.

With regards to our backlinks session, if I had to do it all over again I would probably set a goal of 2 per month and keep better track of them.

To date, I have probably acquired about 5 but they are more free listing sites that don’t have a huge following (as opposed to sites like Purple Roof which has a large following because of its niche).”

What Could Each Be Doing Better?

Some of the biggest areas for improvement for both Holly and Alanna would be as follows:

> More Blogging: new, original content on your website is always a wonderful thing and there is surely no shortage of topics

> Outreach: contacting local bloggers or influencers and asking them to post on your blog (or offering to post on theirs) both adds unique content AND gives you access to their following

> Continue Acquiring Backlinks: Like Alanna suggests, acquiring 2-3 backlinks per month is a great way to organically build your quality web traffic and make new partnerships

> Start A Newsletter (next makeover session)

About the Author Matt Landau

Matt Landau is the Founder of the VRMB and the Inner Circle, two online resources dedicated to helping vacation rental owners and managers generate more bookings. Google+ | More Posts (230)

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