Most renters will have something to say about staying in your holiday rental. If you do a good job of welcoming them and ensuring they have everything they need, the negative feedback should be kept to a minimum.
The good news is that both positive and negative feedback can be useful to you as the holiday let owner. Sometimes someone will leave a positive review but make a little – almost throwaway – comment you can learn from. For instance they may say they loved the property but would have preferred a simple lockbox key pickup as opposed to meeting you in person at a specific time. Even if the time is agreed in advance it can be frustrating to be pinned down like this. By providing a lockbox for the renter they will be free to turn up when it suits them.
Are you checking the information given in guest reviews?
Reviews of your holiday let may be written in a guest book on the premises or left on your website. Either way you should check them frequently and look for comments that may lead to some changes.
For instance someone may have commented on the tired look of the decking at the rear of your holiday rental. The exterior may not look its best, perhaps needing a fresh coat of paint. These guest reviews can lead you to make improvements that will bring in more visitors in the future, so they can be a very positive thing to have once you learn to look at them in the right way.
Are you responding to comments in a positive way?
A negative comment – whether left on your website, in your guest book or on an external site such as TripAdvisor – can be disappointing. But if you take action to resolve the root of the comment and go back to the commenter to let them know you have listened and taken action, you can turn it into a positive.
For example someone may be disappointed that no welcome basket was left. The solution to this would be to put one together for each new guest that stays in your holiday let from now on. You can then leave a response that states this. Always remember to be courteous and to thank the commenter for their response. As you can see it can highlight your responsiveness and your willingness to improve on your holiday rental, no matter how good it might be in the first place.
Respond to positive as well as negative reviews
People like to see a responsive holiday let owner. If you respond only to negative comments and never to positive ones, it looks like you are ignoring the positives. Be more engaging – respond to as many as you can. It makes you seem friendlier and more approachable. If people have questions about the property before booking, they are more likely to ask them if you seem approachable. This alone can improve your bookings and perhaps even increase the positive review count as well.