If you ever sit on the subway or walk down the street in a busy city, you’ll notice that the majority of people around you are either on their phones or looking for their phones. But with nearly 4 billion smartphone users worldwide and high demand for connectivity on the go, this comes as no surprise.
The smartphone industry has skyrocketed and will continue to leave its mark as it evolves with speedy networks and futuristic designs. In fact, it has started to take over desktop usage altogether. A study by StatCounter shows that a whopping 55.73% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices, 41.46% comes from desktops, and 2.81% from tablets.
So, as vacation rental owners, how can we take advantage of this rise in smartphone usage? Apps!
Free to all owners and managers, the Vrbo app makes it incredibly easy for vacation rental owners to manage their businesses at all times. It gives you the freedom to edit your listings at any time, update your calendar, reply to messages, and get notifications on booking inquiries directly to your phone.
A feature that stands out on the Vrbo app is Trip Boards, a useful way for travelers to save and organize properties for their next trip. Travelers can team up with friends and family, “hearting” and voting for their favorite destinations and properties. As a vacation rental owner, you should know what features the app provides and the experience that your guests will have when using it.
It’s important to know that HomeAway and Vrbo were acquired by Expedia Group in 2015 but their brand and users differ. While Vrbo is used by homeowners in the US, Mexico, and Canada, HomeAway is mainly used by hosts in Europe, Australia, and India. However, most of the functionalities on the platforms are the same.
Airbnb’s app is known for its easy use, allowing owners to use the same features that are found on the website. The highlights of the app are the inbox, saved responses, and the resolution center.
Forget about wasting time scrolling through your inbox! Airbnb’s app allows you to archive old messages and search for specific words. If you’re tired of responding to the same questions, the app also lets you save responses so that you can use them in the future. You can even send photo messages to your guests when words just aren’t enough.
Last but not least, if you ever come across problems or questions, you can access Airbnb’s resolution center directly from the app.
Booking.com’s partner app Pulse helps owners manage their properties with ease. Keep an eye on all updates, immediately respond to guests, and update your room availability at any time.
If you’re running a multiple property business and overwhelmed by the number of notifications bombarding your phone, you can select what kinds of updates you’d like to receive such as new bookings or cancellations. You can also update photographs directly from your mobile device, saving effort and attracting new guests on the go.
Back in 2015, Expedia introduced their mobile app due to the high demand from travelers. Today, their Partner Central app complements the website by helping owners provide the best guest experience possible.
Increase your productivity, respond to reviews, engage with guests, and manage inventory. Upload and tag pictures right from your phone and highlight local points of interest.
If you’re looking to take your vacation rental business to the next level and invest in property management software, Lodgify offers a plethora of services and tools to help you manage your property efficiently.
From a channel manager that automatically syncs your calendars, bookings, and rates from the top online travel agencies mentioned above to automation tools that make communication and accounting way less difficult, your business (and mental health) is bound to thrive.
The Lodgify app allows vacation rental owners to be in full control of their business at all times. Manage your reservations, stay up-to-date with guest check-ins and check-outs, and message your clients whenever and wherever. Set up autoresponders to save time and switch on push notifications to always be in the know.
There you have it! Our top 6 vacation rental apps that every owner should know about. Whether you’re just starting out in the industry or you’re an experienced host, knowing about these apps and using them to your benefit will help you run your business effectively.
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