Designing a Vacation Rental Website Part 1 | Getting Started
July 12, 2017
You already learned about the importance of professional photos and writing property descriptions. These are some of the basic components for a vacation rental business. The next step is to host this content on your own website.
It is important to create a website that gets travelers to book your property. Here are the first steps to designing a vacation rental website.
Choose a Platform
Rental owners have many options for their websites’ platform. You may already know some popular platforms. Such websites include WordPress, Squarespace, and Wix.
Yet there may be other platforms which work better for your business. This depends on your budget, tech skills, and desired website features. See which platform matches your goals:
Wix offers prices for personal or professional websites. Listed below are the ones most applicable for vacation rental users:
Unlimited Plan (For Entrepreneurs and Freelancers)
Unlimited bandwidth & pages
10 GB storage
Remove Wix Ads
$300 Ad Vouchers
Site Booster App
Form Builder App
eCommerce (For Small Businesses) – Same features as the unlimited plan with the exceptions of:
20 GB bandwidth
20 GB storage
VIP (Priority Support) – Has the same features as the eCommerce plan with the additional items:
VIP support / 24-7 Support
If you don’t have time to build your website on your own, that’s okay.
Futurestay's vacation rental Dashboard, can help you design a website. You choose one of our templates, customize your fonts and colors, add photos, and make your website personalized!
Do you already have a website? No problem! You can connect your website and domain to access Futurestay’s Dashboard with full access to Futurestay’s listing channel automation, guest management, financial reports, and other features.
Choosing a Website Template
Different platforms provide designs that tailor to your property. For instance, whether you want your website to be image-focused. Some templates allow you to choose where you want the search bar. Should it be in the middle of the page? After your property’s images?
How do you choose the best template for your rental business? Think of your brand as a whole. What colors, images, and font choices reflect your brand?
For instance, an urban apartment’s website would have a different feeling than a tropical villa. Make sure that your design choices have meaning.
Keep It Simple
Part of creating a website means customizing it for your business. It’s tempting to overspend or over-design. Sometimes that means adding plugins and features which you may not need.
Less is more. You don’t want to overwhelm your renters. Here are some ways to optimize your website:
Easy Navigation – One article cites that you have less than a minute to capture your viewers’ attention before they leave the page. If you have clear navigation, travelers will know where to click and visit.
Call-to-actions (CTA) – Are text, images, or buttons that link to content or pages. This persuades users to download, signup, or buy a product or service. A carefully place CTA can draw your renter into your site. Some examples include:
“Sign up Today”
Mobile Friendly Websites
In 2016, Hosting Facts found that “52.7% of global internet users and 75.1% of U.S. internet users access the internet via mobile.”
With more individuals shopping from their phones, having a mobile friendly website is key. “40% of global internet users, or more than 1 billion people, have bought products or goods online.”
Travelers booking vacations also browse and book from their phones. Expand your market and booking possibilities by having a dual site. This will increase your reach and also prove a testament to your sites’ navigation.
Starting Your Website
Choosing your platform and features is the basis for creating a vacation rental website. When making your decisions, mobile friendly and navigable designs matter.
The next step for your website is to customize it for your business. Check out part two of our post, where we discuss the design and styling of a website.