How to Write a Standout Property Description for Your Vacation Rental
Susan is on the hunt for a vacation rental. And she’s feeling the pressure.
She wants her three grown children, each with their own families in far-flung places, to click the link for the rental she chooses and be so jazzed that they immediately shoot back: “Let’s book it!”
She goes online and confronts a ton of options. Narrowing her search to 5-bedrooms helps. Next up: check out the photos. Professional, great lighting, inviting decor—check. Then she reads the property description.
This is where many vacation rental owners drop the ball.
Susan reads the property description to make sure your home will meet all of her needs. Do the bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms? Is there a flat screen in the living room for her grand-kids to watch movies? Are there are any weird restrictions like ABSOLUTELY NO TALKING AFTER 9PM?
But just because Susan is hunting for specific information doesn’t mean you should simply dump as many details as possible into your description. Instead, use this opportunity to really sell her on your rental!
How do you do that? We’ve put together four time-tested writing tips that are sure to help your property description stand out.
1. Convey Your Unique Selling Point
In the vacation rental industry, you have to figure out what sets your property apart from the competition, and then drive the point home over and over again…in the photos, in the headline, in the description, and in any other marketing materials you produce.
The more your unique selling point (USP) differentiates you from your competition, the better. A great location is good, but you might have neighbors who can claim the same benefit. Even better is offering the only hot tub in that great location, or kayaks your guests can use for free.
2. Tell a Story
As a vacation rental owner, you have an advantage: large hotels don’t have a human face—but you do! And so, when you write about your property, you have the opportunity tell a story. Your words and tone should convey trustworthiness, personality, authenticity, and connection—both to the perspective guest, and to your property.
Tell a story about the moment you fell in love with the home, or the months you spent getting the interior just right. Of course, you shouldn’t make the property description your life biography, but a sentence or two about the time you searched high and low for the perfect piece of art for the dining room tells travelers that you’re passionate about providing great accommodations.
Leave the restrictions for later. Steer clear of big, bold NO PETS AT ANY TIME, EVER commands. We know it’s tempting to weed out problem guests at the outset, but you may lose good guests in the process. No one wants to deal with an overprotective property owner who assumes bad behavior or bad intentions right off the bat.
Again, warm and inviting is key.
Use personal pronouns (“you,” “we,” “yours”) and a conversational tone to help create a sense of intimacy and familiarity. Write like you’re talking directly to the perspective guest. A little humor can be great, too. (Just avoid glaring grammar/spelling mistakes—people may wonder what other details you let slip through the cracks.)
3. Paint a Picture
You won’t win anyone over with overblown adjectives like “amazing” or “spectacular.”
Anyone can claim these attributes—accurate or not. That’s why you need to paint a picture for travelers. Describe in detail to the potential guest what makes the views, pool, or living room furniture so special. Maybe the couches are so comfortable you fall into a nap almost immediately after sinking in. Maybe the views are particularly striking at sunset, when light shimmers gold on the water.
Think about the best experiences you’ve had at your vacation home (or that guests say they’ve had) and work them into your description.
4. Keep it Simple
Short sentences, short paragraphs. Use small bites of information as opposed to big long paragraphs and sentences with a half-dozen commas. For better or worse, this is just the way people read online.
Also consider inserting headings between paragraphs to break up the content and facilitate skimming.
For example, before describing your property’s bedroom details, dream up an intriguing headline to slap above them, like: “What Makes Our Bedrooms So Inviting?”
Follow these best practices when writing your property description and Susan is sure to book your vacation rental in no time!
Need help writing the perfect description for your vacation rental? Evolve’s marketing team will write your property description for free! Click here to check out a 60-second video about our marketing and booking services.
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