Communicating with Guests

Guest communication is essential when managing bookings for vacation rentals, as it builds trust and ensures smooth transactions. 

Responding Promptly

First, respond promptly to messages from potential guests. Whether you receive inquiries through your website’s contact form, mobile app, or email, it’s crucial to reply as quickly as possible to prevent losing bookings and maintain a good reputation within the industry.

Responding to inquiries in a timely manner can mean the difference between a disappointing experience and the 5-star treatment your guest deserves.

Measuring Your Responsiveness

There are two metrics to measure your responsiveness to guest inquiries.  Here’s how they are defined.

Response Rate

The response rate is the overall percentage of messages you respond to.  The response rate is typically displayed as a percentage.

How is it calculated?

Response rate = Number of messages replied to / number of messages received

Response Time

The response time is the time between when a message is received and when a response is sent.  Response time is typically displayed in minutes and seconds.

How is it calculated?

Response time = time of response – time of initial message

Leveraging Communication Templates

To help speed up the response time, consider utilizing communication templates. These templates could cover frequently asked questions, check-in instructions, property rules, etc. Preparing pre-written responses for you will save time and maintain consistency in your messaging.

Using Lake’s Messaging Tool

You can also integrate Lake with messaging tools and channels, such as email, messaging apps, and website chat options. This way, all guest communication is centralized and easy to manage, no matter where the initial contact was made.

Here are ways to enhance guest communication through various channels:

  • Website: Make essential information readily available, such as check-in/out times, house rules, and contact details, so guests can find answers without contacting you.
  • Email: Use an email signature that includes essential property information and links for quick reference.
  • Mobile App: Ensure your app is user-friendly and provides relevant information at guests’ fingertips.

Going Low Tech to Manage Your Email Inbox

Another essential aspect of guest communication is keeping track of your messages. 

You could use color coding or a simple spreadsheet to help you manage conversations and timelines. This organizational technique lowers the risk of missing critical messages and ensures you’re always up to speed with inquiries and issues.

Following Up With Guests

Lastly, remember to follow up with guests after their stay. This could be a simple ‘thank you’ message or asking for a review. By maintaining open communication, even after the guest departs, you’ll build solid relationships and increase the likelihood of repeat bookings.

Effective guest communication is key to successfully managing bookings on an online vacation rental platform. No matter the method, always aim to be concise, courteous, and helpful when engaging with potential and current guests.

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