Hawaii is one of the world’s top vacation destinations, but according to a recent survey by the Hawaii Tourism Authority, 15% of visitors stated said they wouldn’t travel to the Aloha State if alternative accommodations like vacation rentals weren’t available. The demand for Hawaiian rental properties has increased significantly throughout the islands, including on Maui, making it important for your vacation rental to stand out from the rest for success.

Professional Vacation Rental Photos

You only get one shot at a good first impression, so high-quality photos are an absolute must. When people are browsing through the many available vacation rentals in Maui, with so many out there, it’s the prettiest listings that will make them stop and want to know more. After filtering the best options,with the right number of bedrooms, at the best price in the desired area, everything out to pinpoint the best options in their desired area that are within their price range, have the number of bedrooms they need, and so on, viewers begin clicking on the listings that have the most beautiful looking properties.

Image: Makena Surf #G204 by Ali’i Resorts 

The main photo is the primary factor that drives travelers to click through to view the entire listing and determine if that’s where they want to spend their vacation. Does it elicit a feeling of the Aloha spirit? Viewers are drawn in with high-quality photos High-quality photographs of the property draw viewers in, that present a firsthand experience of the your home while emanating a certain feeling that can mean the difference between booking or moving on to another property. When FlipKey conducted a study, it found that travelers are 83% more likely to inquire about listings that have at least 20 photos. Beautiful photographs support the descriptions while allowing the audience to experience the property as close as possible to real life. before booking. They can positively influence that renter to book.

Read this marketing professional’s article as you only have seconds to capture viewers’ attention. Take a close, hard look at your photographs – would you want to read more about the property or move on? If your images are dark, blurry or unappealing, it’s going to negatively affect bookings as poor-quality images suggest to the viewer that the owner doesn’t care and/or the property has negative qualities. Renters want to know feel the Aloha spirit from the moment they step through the front door. After all, unless you’ve only recently moved to Hawaii, You know that Aloha goes well beyond just a simple greeting as it’s our way of life that draws travelers to the islands again and again.

High quality photos of your vacation rental property, not only make your home look more enticing, they say a lot about you as the property owner. If they are good, They will tell the viewer if your invested in the rental and dedicated to ensuring the best experience possible for your guests from the very start. Photos will say to them will show that you take pristine care of your home, have welcoming spaces with comfortable, practical furniture, and that its spotless and ready for guests.

Homes with professional photos, not smartphone pics, will stand out if they have the following features:

Lighting. The right lighting can establish the home as spacious and welcoming. Its the opportunity to show off the beauty of a rooms interior, and that incredible ocean view out the window. There should be no washed-out colors or overexposed blocks of natural light. Its essential to understand how to adjust lighting and control glare to create a polished look. You want the important details to stand out, like the high-end touches, and especially the views to stand out. Highlight swaying palms, tropical greenery, plumeria, and the beach framed by those dazzling turquoise waters!

Image: Makena Surf #B101 by Ali’i Resorts 

Staging. Professional photographers will style and stage a home in a way that appeals to potential rentals by removing clutter and personal items such as family photographs to highlight the property’s very best features.
Angles. Using the right camera angles not only means making sure photos are not tilted, but keeping aesthetics in mind, capturing the character of all rooms by thinking about overall composition.

Image: Hale Mahina #A201 by Ali’i Resorts 

Updated Inviting Décor. Updated Inviting Décor. While it’s important to eliminate clutter and any personal items, the walls shouldn’t be blank as it will send the message that there has been little invested into the property. Before capturing those photos consider the textures, colors and imaginative spirit of Hawaiian theme décor. Provide simple charm by adding items like a Hawaiian canoe paddle or a surfboard to the wall and scatter a few Aloha pillows from So-Ha Living on the lounge chairs, sofa or bedding. Think beyond the old Hawaiian patterns and keep your decor updated, modern and clean.

Image: Makena Surf #G201 by Ali’i Resorts 

Flow. Flow. The organization of your photos is another key consideration as you want there to be a flow that feels as though the viewer is allows the potential guests to understand which rooms connect where, as if they are walking through the home.

If pictures show value, professionalism, commitment, and an Aloha feel throughout, ultimately it will translate into more bookings.

A Winning Description. While photos capture the viewer’s attention, the description of the property is critical as it serves as your sales pitch to reel them in. It needs to maximize the value of the property and command the viewer’s attention while culminating with an active call to action. What makes your property stand out from the rest? Think about it carefully and then emphasize that by positioning the description to play on your property rentals core strengths.

Start by putting yourself in the potential guests’ shoes, thinking about the details that would really entice you, and be sure to write how you talk so that it doesn’t sound stiff but instead conveys your personality. Hawaii is a way of life and thinking – the essential Hawaiian concepts of Pono, Aloha, Aina, Mana, and Ohana are all crucial factors in why the islands are consistently ranked as the happiest and least stressed state in America.

Does your vacation rental property fit in with that desirable state of mind?

Does your vacation rental property fit in with that desirable state of mind?

A long list of all the amenities isn’t enough to encourage guests to book. Instead, allure them with a well-composed story of what it will be like to be on vacation in your home. Avoid cliché adjectives and use active verbs, providing the reader with the most vivid image of what their stay will be like, paired with those high-quality photos.

The Necessities + Special Touches

Of course, getting renters to book shouldn’t be your only goal – you want them to remember your vacation rental property and rave about it to others so they will might want to visit return.

Image: Royal Mauian # 315 by Ali’i Resorts 

You might want to put out a special welcome basket filled with Hawaiian macadamia nuts, local fruits, or Hawaiian coffee. Of course, you’ll also want to make sure they have everything they need, such as extra blankets and pillows, a wine opener, condiments like sugar and creamer, and so on. Most people visiting Maui come to spend time on the beach, so providing things like beach towels, beach chairs, a beach cooler and local island maps are highly appreciated. Guests also want to feel like they can relax after enjoying a day out exploring, so put out some of the fun new trending card or board games and local magazines of Maui activities, spas and adventures.

Making your guests truly feel at home in paradise is the perfect recipe for a successful vacation rental.

Video Reviews

While word of mouth is great, your success will primarily come from reviews. With sites out there like TripAdvisor, Yelp! and AirBnb already beta testing video reviews, don’t be afraid to jump in and ask for them directly. It can’t hurt and it can give a significant boost to your marketing efforts.

Video Review Example by Ali’i Resorts

Here’s what you can do. Leave a postcard on the table offering an incentive for a video review like the example above. An incentive can be something as simple and inexpensive as a $10 Amazon gift card, $25 off their next stay with you, or even a $15 gift card to a local restaurant, coffee shop or towards an activity.

Now ask your guest to create an up short 30-second to 2-minute review of their stay. at your vacation home, Request that they send the video to your email so you can review it. In return, be sure to and then send them a BIG Mahalo along with their gift. Once you have a guest review, you can start using this popular user-generated content to help make your vacation rental marketing campaign even more successful.

If you’re ready to take advantage of these tips, but want to make sure it’s done 100% right, it’s time to turn to the pros: Ali’i Resorts. Not a client yet? Check out the many benefits this organization can provide here to help you make your vacation rental property the most successful it can be.