Booking.com is the platform with the most listed properties and a huge number of travelling visitors, which is both an opportunity and challenge for hoteliers selling rooms on this OTA. If you just generate very few bookings with Booking.com, it is time to re-check your supply settings and take action. There are two focused areas in regards to property visibility that can help to improve your bookings on Booking.com and even other OTAs, those are acting on property’s availability and acting on booking restrictions.
Loading your rates & availability for future dates
By acting this, you will increase your property’s visibility in the search results and get ready for early bookings over the coming months. Opportunities are around the corner, the more rooms or units you make available in advance, the more travelers you can potentially appeal to. You can refer to Booking.com’s 2022 Travel Predictions for more details of captured travelers’ behaviours and demands in the early next year and some other useful tips to attract these demands here.
Removing the length of stay restriction
Booking.com indicates that a significant proportion of travelers’ searches on the platform are for stays of one or two nights; however, almost half of connected Vacation Rental partners don’t show up in travelers’ searches for one-night stays due to length of stay restrictions.
There are different direct impact levels of restrictions which can be suffered by the properties:
- Never appear in search results: The restrictions may prevent the property from being visible to all travelers and it becomes unbookable, as a result, there are no bookings generated for the property because travelers can’t book what they can’t see on the platform.
- Reduced property visibility in search results: The restrictions limit the property’s opportunity of reaching potential bookers. A common example is that the property allows bookings at least one day in advance, so when the travelers search for a place where they can check into that same day, it is least likely that they can see the property’s offer.
- Not appear in certain search results: This scenario is for the length of stay restriction case. For example, a property has set up a three-night minimum length of stay restriction, which is not shown when travelers are searching for one-night and two-night stays.
Apart from obvious impact in terms of property visibility, there are some indirect disadvantages caused by restrictions such as reduced brand awareness, lack of controls of booking volumes due to unpredictably unbookable situations and losing exposure benefits towards other properties with fewer or no restrictions.
Booking.com advises properties to ease their minimum length of stay restrictions to minimize these impacts and generate more bookings. The properties can particularly offer shorter stays such as one-night and two-night stays to attract more travelers with this demand.
Above are two recommendations for properties to improve their supply and capability to match the untapped demand. In the Booking.com extranet, the properties should access the demand data section which is specific to their locations. This includes important metrics such as booking windows, traveler type, split between domestic and international travelers, devices used for booking, top countries – and more essential data. From these insights, you can tailor the best improvement in gaining bookings.