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getawayGoGo, Google Analytics for Searching, Juneteenth, WordPress Plugin Graduates

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getawayGoGo, Google Analytics for Searching, Juneteenth, WordPress Plugin Graduates

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Happy Friday, everyone!  Here's another belated product update that covers the July 12th release with 20 updates.  Give it a quick read before you cruise on into your weekend! 

New Features

getawayGoGo

We'd like to welcome one of our newest first-class channel partners getawayGoGo!  A big shout-out to Brad, Jason, and the team at getawayGoGo for the hard work they put in to make this integration possible. We already announced the getawayGoGo partnership a couple of months ago, but let's run through it again from a product update standpoint.

getawayGoGo is all about last-minute bookings.  That's all they do.  In fact, you can't book a vacation rental on getawayGoGo that is more than 14 days in the future.  This is super cool because it allows you to offload your last-minute inventory to a channel that is solely focused on that with deals and promotions that are targeted at travelers that are looking to capitalize on last-minute pricing.  As getawayGoGo works to build its following among travelers and guests, your inventory can become part of the deals and promotions it sells, while you still charge full price for your normal bookings that are made 30 or 60 days out.  Don't want to offer a deal or promotion for last-minute stays?  No problem!  You can still push your inventory to getawayGoGo with a push of a button and charge the same price.

Their fee structure is also pretty cool.  Instead of paying a percentage of the booking amount, you simply pay a flat $10 fee for any booking or $7 for any inquiry where the guest came through getawayGoGo first.  If they inquire and also book, the total amount is never more than $10.

To get started with getawayGoGo, simply go to Settings > Channels  > API Integrations in OwnerRez and look for the getawayGoGo tile.

Click the Connect button, fill out your preferences and save.  From there, follow the instructions tab to reach out to getawayGoGo support to finish the account on their side.

The integration is complete and includes all content, rates, rules, and availability.  Bookings come into OwnerRez automatically along with the guest's credit card, so the process is similar to Vrbo.  For deals and promotions, simply discount your rates in OwnerRez for last-minute stays and getawayGoGo will notice the price difference and automatically advertise that as a deal.  It checks your pricing against a 60-90 day average to determine if the last-minute pricing is cheaper.  You can discount last-minute stays in OwnerRez in a variety of ways like adding a rules-based discount for the "number of days from now" or simply adjusting your spot rates on the rate calendar.

For questions about the getawayGoGo fee structure or where your listings will appear, please reach out to getawayGoGo directly for answers.

Deposits

In the July 20th change log, you'll notice that we mention something about "deposits".  Deposits is a big deal with a lot of implications and things to think about, and, while you can already use deposits in the app, we're actively working on some important fixes that are not quite out.  We're going to write a separate product update all about deposits in a few days, so keep your eyes peeled for more on that soon!

Enhancements & Tweaks

Google Analytics for Search Widgets

When guests search your website for available properties or dates, how do you know what they are searching for?  How do you know if they search for dates but don't come up with any properties?  Maybe that's happening a lot for a particular set of dates in your area.

Well, now you can know!  We added search events to Google Analytics to track and record every time someone executes a search on your Availability & Property Search widget.  If it's the first page, Google Analytics will see a "search" event.  If the visitor scrolls to a different page of results in the widget, it will show as a "search page" event.

This works on both Hosted Websites and widgets you embed in other websites, and it will also work if you use our search short-codes in your WordPress website.

The event in Google Analytics also records the arrival date, departure date, result count, and page number of the search as well so that you can do additional research.

Juneteenth

Juneteenth (June 19th) is now a federal holiday in the United States, and most of our American users already know that because it's been official for more than a year.  But it wasn't in OwnerRez!

We have updated the official list of United States holidays to include it, and it will continue to appear every year moving forward.

Wondering what you need to do for it to appear in your OwnerRez account?  Well, if you subscribe to the "USA Official Holidays" list, then nothing - it's already there!

If you don't subscribe to the USA Official Holidays list, you can always add it as a manual holiday.  We were a little late getting this one out, but now it's there for next year!

WordPress Plugin is Fully Live

Our WordPress Plugin is graduating.  That's right!  We've been testing the plugin long enough that we no longer consider it a "beta" feature. If you've been waiting to try it out, go ahead and spin it up.

This doesn't mean we won't make changes or add more features to it down the road, just that we consider it mature enough to recommend it to all of our WordPress users.

OwnerRez on Other Social Channels

Did you know that OwnerRez has a great YouTube channel and a LinkedIn page?  No?  Yes?  Well, now you definitely do, and we just updated our website header to show this. Click through, follow and subscribe!

Bug Fixes

Update OR logo on Setup Interview.  Apparently, we still had that ancient palm tree appearing at the end of the interview!  It's been removed.  Is this a bug?  I don't think so, but hey it was on the list of stuff that was fixed, so now you know. 😉

Clarify channel bridge import failures.  When running a Channel Bridge import, you might have seen this error message "Cancellation status of booking (false) doesn't match cancellation status of import (true)".  Hmm, what does that mean?  Well, it basically means that you're trying to import a booking where the booking is already in OwnerRez, and, when merging the two, we noticed that they each show two different cancellation statuses.  We're not sure which cancellation status is correct, so we throw up our hands and show you an error message.  We added some text to clarify all of this.  Mutual blocking and cancellation status problems should now be easier to understand.

Booking list view preferences now look nicer.  Just a little polish to the preferences page. (If you really must know, the "Cleaning Date" option was misaligned.)

Display a notice that TripAdvisor is not accepting new connections.  We've been told by TripAdvisor support that they are not allowing any new connections at this time. So we added a banner to the TripAdvisor API integration setup, warning you of that fact.

Don't say a pending booking will be canceled if it won't!  OwnerRez is all about customizability for your business. To that end, you have the option to decide what to do with pending bookings that don't get paid in a reasonable time. You can automatically cancel them or you can just send a notification and keep it pending longer until you deal with it manually... You probably already knew that, but our "Pending" banner on the booking stated that the booking was going to be canceled, even if you had configured it otherwise! 😲 Well now the statement on the banner matches your configuration choices.

Typo on the hosted site page edit form.  I'll bet you didn't find it, but our eagle-eyed QA team brought it to our attention.

Clarify SMS Brand status has been approved.  Previously, after submitting your SMS Brand details, if everything was accepted by the regulators, it would just disappear into a black hole and you could not see what happened. Well, we added a quick little green checkmark to the SMS Numbers list so you can tell your brand is hunky-dory.

Payment Summary report filters for arrival and departure dates.  For some time, the Payment Summary report has only supported filtering by the actual payment date. But there's no reason for that to be the case, so we opened it up to allow you more flexibility.

Template field codes are now case-insensitive.  Are you one of those awesome power users who tried putting field codes in the `style` attributes of your templates?  Previously this didn't work because the attributes are automatically converted to lowercase, but our merge field replacements only matched uppercase fields. Well, we've got your back!  Now, both lowercase and uppercase field codes will be accepted, so go ahead and make those styles dynamic!

Send triggers when clearing the pending status without payment.  Some hosts want to mark a booking as no longer pending (i.e. accepted) but not collect immediate payment.  In that scenario, we will now send the "Booking Created" triggers you have configured.