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Managing your guests
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sparkJS



Joined: 27 Nov 2016
Posts: 20
Location: North Cornwall

PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:57 pm    Post subject: No reviews Reply with quote

OK so it's only been a few weeks since I completed on my holiday let but I really want to know who stays there, what they like and don't like so that I can get some feedback before I make any changes.

The agent that markets the property apparently sends off a feedback form but nothing has come from the last 3 weeks.

Do you think no news is good news? Do you think I should try and contact guests direct behind the back of the agent? I only have their contact details if they booked when I owned the property so actually don't have any contact right now.

When I visit the property later in the year there will be a few comments in the guestbook and that's all I can go on for now.
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Pirou



Joined: 30 Jan 2017
Posts: 55
Location: A bit north of Pirou, Normandy (50)

PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A friend of mine has a chambre d'hote further south and she has said that she thinks the fashion for reviews is on the way out. She reckons guests are no less pleased with her property because she regularly gets gifts and recently got a 50 eu tip from guests who stayed 2 nights but her reivews have dried to a trickle.

Do you believe the agents are sending out the form? Do they "own" the guests or can you have their contact details? Dpends on your contract I suppose. Is there anyone who can go in and look at your guestbook to see if there are comments. If there are get them to take a photo and send them to you.

But I think you're right and no news is good news. Cool
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GillianF



Joined: 20 Aug 2012
Posts: 649
Location: Dordogne

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We've found it increasingly difficult to get feedback - either via the Visitors' Book, online reviews or our own feedback form. I usually send an e-mail to notify the guest that the damages deposit is on its way back and invite them to leave an online review. Only two have ever done so. Some might reply "thanks, had a lovely time" etc. to my e-mail but others just don't bother to say anything.

Almost everywhere you go nowadays there is a feedback form, customer satisfaction survey etc. and perhaps people are just getting fed up with it.

I tend to think that no comment means they didn't feel there were any problems to mention.
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COYS



Joined: 06 Jun 2015
Posts: 659
Location: Greek Islands

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GillianF wrote:
Almost everywhere you go nowadays there is a feedback form, customer satisfaction survey etc. and perhaps people are just getting fed up with it.


+1
It's just become a chore, especially with the registrations required & consequent spam that inevitably follows from the OTA's. People have more pressing things to do when returning home & I've all but given up asking. Guest books don't take long to become 'themed' & we get the odd photo or comment posted on our FB page, maybe a short 'thank you' email.

Can be tough when first marketing sparkJS but I'd hold your nerve. You'll never please all the people all of the time & you can't action every guests little foibles so I'd just have a bit of confidence in your product & you'll soon get a feel for what's working - if it's not I'm sure the agent won't be shy in letting you know! Good luck.
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NeatandPicky



Joined: 30 Aug 2007
Posts: 353
Location: Pissouri Bay, Cyprus

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:21 am    Post subject: Feedback / reviews Reply with quote

You could make a simple online feedback form with JotForm or WuForms, and make a little (framed?) notice to display in your holiday let with a link to the form saying that it's your first season and you'd value feedback, suggestions, etc. A smiling photo of you would also help guests to see you as a real person, caring owner, etc.

Not sure of logistics, but maybe someone with access to the property could display for you.
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Dusty



Joined: 19 Dec 2012
Posts: 256
Location: St Cernin de Labarde, Dordogne

PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thats a really good idea from NeatandPicky, we don't struggle with getting reviews but mainly because we work hard on building a relationship with guests and therefore they don't mind making the effort to submit a review. Without that personal relationship the demand for feedback becomes just another demand for feedback and unless there is something negative to say then most people don't bother, but NeatandPickys idea helps to build that relationship.
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sparkJS



Joined: 27 Nov 2016
Posts: 20
Location: North Cornwall

PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your responses.

Unfortunately, I currently don't own a relationship with my guests as the agent deals with that at great expense so with a guestbook on the coffee table and an email from the agent, I think it would be too much to ask them for a third type feedback.

So taking from your comments I think I'm going to update the welcome book with a picture and short paragraph of why I bought here in Cornwall and what I like and recommend. And to encourage to leave feedback in the guestbook because I listen and react if possible to suggestions.

I'm hoping to be able to manage the property myself one day and maintain that relationship better.
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NeatandPicky



Joined: 30 Aug 2007
Posts: 353
Location: Pissouri Bay, Cyprus

PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We used to have written feedback sheets in our villa. And most guests completed them. The problem was that we didn't get to read them until much later when it was all much too late.

By all means write your note for your guestbook, but why not create a very simple online form and give the link saying that as it's your first season you would be keen on immediate feedback to help you improve things for future guests?

The other bonus with this is that it's easier for guests to be totally honest with you which is sometimes hard to take, but better to know than carry on in blissful ignorance.
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NeatandPicky



Joined: 30 Aug 2007
Posts: 353
Location: Pissouri Bay, Cyprus

PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And if you include a question asking for the guest's email address, when you reply to their feedback you could suggest they book directly next time! Sneaky eh?
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akwe-xavante



Joined: 01 Jul 2015
Posts: 222
Location: East Yorkshire

PostPosted: Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't worry unduly myself although it is very frustrating.

I can remember when I was in this situation and I worried about it etc etc.

Generally I think people are keen to leave reviews if they have something to moan about rather than the opposite. We are keen to moan, groan and complain when things aren't right but we are lazy and generally can't be bothered to praise when it's due.
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debbuck



Joined: 25 Jul 2017
Posts: 7
Location: york

PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use an agent for my bookings, but given an email and mobile number once they have paid. I always send a text message the day the guests arrive, asking if everything is okay. I always receive a message back. I also send them an email when they leave asking if they will leave me a review. I only starting renting a few months ago. Out of 15 bookings, i have received 14 reviews.
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