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Is Syndicating Your Vacation Rental Listings a Bad Idea?

Would you write your property description using a dictionary? Probably not. But you might be surprised to find that most owners and managers of vacation rental properties syndicate a generic property description and booking rules across their websites, vacation channels and hotel channels. Why?

The answer is pretty obvious. Unless you're new to the short-term vacation rental world, you know how overwhelming the process of channel management can be. Regardless of whether you own or manage one, five or one hundred properties, posting and updating a rental on the hundreds of viable channels or vacation rental listing websites is daunting and incredibly time consuming. Not to mention all of the channel-centric rules. And that says nothing about what it takes to audit and maintain your property information on said sites.

This is where channel management enters into the business equation. Designed to manage your properties' connections to all of those vacation rental listing sites, a quality channel management solution allows you to maintain your property descriptions, photos and other data. And when any of those items change, it makes sure they're accurately adjusted across all channels.

The key to effective channel management software lies in the connection between the channel management software and the actual channel. Solid integration occurs when systems understand each other and that happens with a well-thought-out, well-coded product. A good business relationship with the channel doesn't hurt either.

So channel management is obviously a very important part of any vacation rental business. That's why Kigo has built a strong product and a strong relationship with its channels-to provide the best integration possible.

Big things are happening in the channel world

So why all this talk about channels? Because big things are happening for Kigo in that area. We realize that channel integration is a tricky business. Not every channel works the same way, and that can sometimes translate into delays and confusion. To combat these two issues, Kigo has joined forces with Booking.com to make channel integration completely seamless. Kigo’s goal is to make the process so simple, someone with absolutely no industry background or experience can get to work immediately.

With Kigo's new channel manager, you don't need extensive business or technical knowledge. The new system provides you with a comprehensive data view, allowing you to gain more control over decisions, offer better customer service and maximize occupancy and revenue.

If it’s not broken, why fix it?

Kigo's previous channel management technology met the current needs of our clients and their businesses. In fact, Kigo set the standard for the industry in many cases. Why, then, would we want to completely redesign our channel management solution?

The answer lies in the question. Kigo's industry-leading attitude is the driver that keeps us at the forefront of the industry. We're constantly looking for ways to make vacation rental professionals more money and to stay ahead of our competition. And trends already occurring within the industry have pointed toward the changes we're making. We're determined to stay at the forefront, so that you can benefit. Kigo wants to continue to set the standard.

A shift in paradigm

What are some of those trends we mentioned earlier? They're actually naturally occurring developments based on the maturation of our industry. Short-term rentals no longer appeal to just vacationers. They're also very popular for urban and business travelers who'd rather stay in a place with has the amenities of home. These travelers have unique needs and expect different amenities.

These trends not only have an effect as to who comes to the channel, but can also have an effect on your bookings. For example, many channels have listings that are based on a "one property equals one booking approach." If you have more than one booking at the same property, then you have to change the information you include in your listing. The channel also has to change the way it looks at your rental. And that doesn't even take hotels into account. With some channels, if you book if you book one unit, you actually book the whole multifamily property. The system can't see it any other way, so it has to be monitored.

A new channel manager, inside and out

As a result, Kigo has redesigned the Kigo Channel Manager from the ground up. This started with rethinking the way properties are organized. A rental can be organized by unit, listing and listing group. If you have a property with multiple rooms or units, units can be organized by room number, room type (think two-bedroom or "standard" room, suite etc.), and by the overarching property as well.

Taxonomy isn't the only thing that is flexible. Vacation rental management professionals are able to customize pricing, commissions, business logic and much more. We've also redesigned the way you set up your listing and connect with the channels. Because we're working directly with sites like Booking.com to make communication as efficient as possible, you can expect an incredible amount of time savings. The new channel management interface is a game changer-what used to take weeks can take less than a day. That means a much quicker startup for your new revenue streams.

Perhaps one of the most exciting new tools is the booking simulator. This allows you to test your pricing to see how it will shakeout in reality, BEFORE you publish. Just change your parameters and then book as a guest would in their search. The results will speak for themselves and you can make sure to get the most bookings possible.

An exciting future

All of these changes, like the concept of listings, are happening across the vacation rental world. Many forward-thinking channels are already heading in the same direction. In fact, Kigo and Booking.com are tackling these issues not just as two companies, but as paradigm for our industry.

Learn more about Kigo Channel Manager.

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