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Advertising Your Vacation Rental - How to Choose

Mar 29, 2008
There are literally millions of holiday home owners now advertising on the internet. Some people set up their own website and just sit back and hope that they will be found by prospective holidaymakers looking for their vacation property. After a while they start to realize that there is a little more to getting seen on the internet than just creating a website.

The next step for most is using one of the myriad of advertising sites to create a listing. With many of these they are attractive to look at and after about an hour of work you have a respectable listing showing your vacation property or villa in its best light. Once again they sit back and wait for the inquiries to pour in. Once again they are disappointed.

The fact is there are several things you should do if you are a villa or apartment owner if you want your property to be seen on the internet. One of the things not to do, is to sit back and think that things will happen all by themselves.

As a quick guide to getting your property seen on the internet, we will fore-go the setting up of your own website. If you are a novice at things such as SEO, (if you dont know what SEO stands for then your a novice!) and move straight onto where to list your property and how to get your listing seen by the most people.

The first thing is to choose the site to advertise your rental with. There are many ways to do this but I recommend two fairly standard procedures to follow.First make a list of all the keyword search phrases that you would use if you were looking for a villa to rent in its location. A keyword phrase is the words or phrases that you would type into the search box if you were a holidaymaker looking to book a rental.

Now you will need to use some tools that will show you where people actually search and in what volume. The key to successful advertising is getting the maximum number of visitors to your listing page. This is best done by first using a site that receives a lot of traffic for the type of property and the area you are renting in. The best single tool to use is the Google Keyword tool. To find it just type 'Google keyword tool' into your Google search.

Here you will be able to type in some keyword search phrases from your list to find out where people actually search. The tool will give you the terms with the most volume on average and the volume for the previous month. Start working through your list of general and more specific terms ranking them in terms of actual search volume. You should then end up with a list for the most searched terms by volume for the highest traffic general terms as well as your localized search terms.

Now go to Google and type in the highest traffic terms. make a note of the websites that appear on the first page results for each term. What you are ideally looking for are the websites that cover not only the high volume general terms, but also rank well for your local keyword searches. Once you have been down the list you should start to see a pattern of which sites rank well in all areas. If not, then look to split your advertising between a mixture of sites that provide high traffic and those that provide more localized result rankings. Remember to avoid the Pay per click sites that advertise at the top and bottom of the page and down the right hand margin. These sites pay a fee to advertise on Page 1 of the results page. If their advertising budget runs out then so does the traffic to the site. The organic results are most likely to give you stable traffic in the long term.

You should now have a list of maybe half a dozen potential websites to choose from. To decide which ones to choose will depend on a number of different factors that will be covered later.
About the Author
Neil Ebsworth is co-founder of AMLAspain.com, The MLS for Spanish property .and rentals Spain vacation rental properties.
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