Niche Websites and OTA’s.
No business survives by generating income from one source and the vacation rental /self -catering/holiday home rental (whichever phrase you wish to name it) cannot survive through one source alone either.
What is an OTA?
An Online Travel Agent. These include Booking.com, Airbnb, VRBO, Holidaylettings, Expedia etc.
What is a Niche Site?
A site that is specific in what it offers. A niche site could be particular to a location or a community, for example, LGBT. Other niche sites include ones that list properties that specifically pet friendly.
Why is House Parties a Niche Site?
House Parties only offer large, luxury, self-catering properties. All our properties must meet the following criteria:-
- They must have at least five bedrooms and sleep a minimum of 10 guests.
- They must classify as self-catering. A non-commercial kitchen has to be available for guests use. (we do not accept Hotels and B&Bs that have commercial kitchens that cannot be used by guests).
- They must be a minimum of 4 star in standard.
- They must be able to accommodate guests under one roof; we do not accept groups of smaller cottages, yurts, caravans etc.
What Advantages can House Parties offer me that large OTA’s cannot?
- Regardless of which option you chose (Listing Site, Agency Package or Privé), your property will be showcased on our site under its’ real name. Unlike other agencies and some OTAs, we do not change the name of your property.
- Your property name is YOUR BRAND, and we want to help you to build your brand. An established brand name results in more customer recommendations. A large proportion of our bookings are from people who’ve been recommended by friends or family.
- Because we are a company operating in a niche market – we know our customers so well. One thing we know for sure is that in this sector of the market, the lowest price is not the deciding factor for the majority of guests. OTAs market to their customers on the assumption that every customer wants the cheapest / lowest price. Our customers number one priority is a great experience!
- OTAs are massive sites; they simply cannot cater effectively to niche markets. They may quote “vanity metrics” of how many bookings and site visitors they get, the question is, how many of those visitors are looking for a large, luxury property like yours?
- All on-site and off-site SEO, marketing campaigns and social media marketing targets your potential customer.
- Airbnb introduced Airbnb Luxe and Airbnb Plus to differentiate luxury properties, many of which included larger homes. Due to Covid-19 they had to re-assess their priorities and goals, the result being that “Airbnb Luxe” is not receiving much in the way of the marketing budget and Airbnb Plus is allegedly due to be scrapped altogether. As a niche site, our target audience has remained the same for over 15 years and will continue to do so.
- Your property is a small fish in a very big pond on an OTA. Whilst you will get reservations, a niche site delivers the right customer precisely to your door, a customer looking for a large, luxury house for a family holiday or a special occasion.
- With House Parties, you can communicate directly with your guest before, during and after their stay. All of which enables you to grow your brand, ensure your guest has a memorable stay for all the right reasons and promotes repeat bookings and customer recommendations.