Why we use OTA's
Online Travel Agents or ‘OTA’s’ have been around since the early days of the internet, but in recent years have seen a growth in popularity due to sites like AirBnb and HomeAway, which allow guests to book a much broader type of accommodation than just hotel rooms.
Many Cottage holiday agencies see these websites as a threat to their established businesses and websites, as they have created a much more competitive online booking market, and online bookings now make up 80% of all holiday bookings, compared to as little as 25% 10 years ago.
Here at Wight Holiday Lettings, we see these sites as a valuable tool to market our owner’s properties to a vast global audience and reach far more people than we ever could with just one website. Larger agencies will invest millions of £’s annually on google marketing to steer potential guests to their website first, but we believe it is possible to get the best of both worlds, by combining traditional marketing with the use of OTA’s to ensure that our properties gain the most exposure.
Managing marketing across all these sites isn’t easy, and we use post our properties on over 200 websites. Which is why we use specialised booking software to synchronise all our calendars, pricing and property details. We closely monitor booking activity and browsing patterns across these sites to determine how our properties are performing, and then implement tweaks to rates, descriptions and images to improve our booking rates.
There is a substantial cost to using these sites, but we feel that its better to invest in marketing on these established websites (that everyone knows), rather than invest too heavily on PPC (Pay per click) advertising.
Once we receive a booking through and OTA, everything is passed over to us to manage the guests booking, deal with any queries and changes, coordinate travel and arrival details with the guests and manage their needs during their stay.
Dealing with bookings is just a small part of the service we offer and if you’d like more information of how we can help get the most from your holiday home, please contact us for an appraisal on 01983 525710.