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Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Replies: 29 - Pages: 2 [ 1 2 ] - Last Reply: Aug 11, 2019 10:36 PM by: Joe S
JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

OK, I am at the point where I am to set up all the properties at each of Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

I have skimmed some of the help topics you have, but I am not 100% clear on best procedure is:

- to open up a partner account with each (obviously)

- have all my OwnerRez property descriptions complete

But not really sure the optimal way to get the OwnerRez topics and other machinery functioning on the major listing sites

I see this: https://secure.ownerreservations.com/settings/channels

But I realize there have been changes, such as recent HomeAway API

So, is doing this going to port over my OwnerRez content for each property? Is the calendar and other stuff automatic? Do the Amenities I selected get picked up automatically? What about the Owner information, short description, and other fields on the Description page?

I want to do this right once, not wrong and flail a couple times.

[should start having pictures within a week.]

Chris Hynes
Registered: 10/19/12
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Yes, the procedure is to open an account with each channel. For booking.com and Airbnb, you have to build out the listings on those channels and then you can connect to them in OwnerRez and push rates.

For TripAdvisor and VRBO, the content is populated from what's in OwnerRez -- photos, descriptions, amenities, rates etc. -- so you don't need to build out the listings on those channels, just initiate the connection process with them for a PM account, hook up to API, and we will start pushing out to them. The first step is to run the Listing Quality Analyzer in the Tools menu to make sure all of the content is compatible.

Then go to Settings > Channel Connections and look at the top under the API Integrated section. Add the channels you want, and the instructions tab of each channel will get you started with the connection.

For booking.com, TA, VRBO, calendar updates and rates are all automatically pushed.

For Airbnb, we don't have API yet so you get calendar updates via our 2 way iCal sync and you can push rates using channel bridge or use PriceLabs which can push rates to Airbnb automatically.

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Thx, Chris

It is a bit confusing what to do where for each channel at this point. You are building a great service, I know it's complex.

Chris Hynes
Registered: 10/19/12
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Yep, it's a process. Let us know if you have further questions once you add those channels in OwnerRez and start working on the instructions procedure.

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

The burning question is:

...Realizing that each of these 4 sites have their own processes and methods and ways. Including how they communicate with clients
...Realizing that how or if they provide guest phone number and email can differ...

How does the various email templates (lease agreement/signature, collecting payment, security deposit, etc.) work with Booking.com, TA, VRBO, Airbnb?? Does it not work well or have issues with any of these 4 I might not know about?

Scott J
Registered: 3/20/19
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Chris, when you say VRBO, does that also mean Homeaway?

Right now I've been having only one property on Homeaway, and I wanted to add my others to add up to five.

Does one have to get the five properties set up in OwnerRez first to be able to have them all ported over to the channels?

Chris Hynes
Registered: 10/19/12
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

VRBO and HomeAway are the same -- a listing on one will be distributed to the other (as well as other places like Expedia, CanadaStays, Abritel etc.). For the API integration we call it the "HomeAway" channel to keep it simple.

Yep, the properties need to be in OwnerRez and then go to Settings > Channel Connections, add the HomeAway channel (the one under the API Integrated section), and contact HomeAway using the instructions and they'll work through the rest of the process with you.

Scott J
Registered: 3/20/19
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

I didn't realize that CanadaStays was part of Homeaway, etc., I was about to sign up with them separately. So are there any other channels that the properties get distributed to with the HA/Vrbo group?

I've been getting bookings on my one HA listing from Vrbo and Expedia, but never CanadaStays or Abritel. Is it not being distributed to them because I don't have the 5 properties minimum set up yet?

Scott J
Registered: 3/20/19
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

I didn't realize that CanadaStays was part of Homeaway, etc., I was about to sign up with them separately. So are there any other channels that the properties get distributed to with the HA/Vrbo group?

I've been getting bookings on my one HA listing from Vrbo and Expedia, but never CanadaStays or Abritel. Is it by chance not being distributed to them because I don't have the 5 property minimum set up yet?

Scott J
Registered: 3/20/19
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Chris, when you say VRBO, does that also mean Homeaway?

Right now I've been having only one property on Homeaway, and I wanted to add my others to add up to five.

Does one have to get the five properties set up in OwnerRez first to be able to have them all ported over to the channels?

Chris Hynes
Registered: 10/19/12
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Yep, HomeAway and VRBO are the same company and distribute back and forth to eachother. As for distribution to others like Expedia or CanadaStays, you'd have to ask them about the exact criteria for distribution. I found this article with a bit of info on the "Expanded Distribution Network: https://help.vrbo.com/articles/What-is-the-Expanded-Distribution-Network -- "The Expanded Distribution Network includes Expedia Distribution brands (Travelocity, CheapTickets, Orbitz, & Expedia), as well as Trivago, KAYAK, CandaStays, TravelMob and other affiliates that specialize in vacation rentals."

I know that they only distribute to Expedia if you've got instant book enabled. Yep, you'd set the properties in OwnerRez and then start pushing them over.

Also note that "HomeAway sites are meant to offer a "Whole Home" experience to travelers": https://help.vrbo.com/articles/What-types-of-properties-can-I-advertise

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

ok, my question above was "hijacked" a bit, so bringing them down again:

The burning question is:
...Realizing that each of these 4 sites have their own processes and methods and ways. Including how they communicate with clients
...Realizing that how or if they provide guest phone number and email can differ...
How does the various email templates (lease agreement/signature, collecting payment, security deposit, etc.) work with Booking.com, TA, VRBO, Airbnb?? Does it not work well or have issues with any of these 4 I might not know about?

Chris Hynes
Registered: 10/19/12
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

The pre-booking process is different on all of those sites, but you can funnel in the post-booking process to one standard process. Here's the lowdown:

VRBO will give you the real guest email address and phone right off.

Booking.com, TripAdvisor, and Airbnb will give you the phone number and a passthrough/platform email address that will send email through to the guest. TripAdvisor will strip links in the email until full payment is made, the others will always pass them through, so my recommendation is to set TA to full payment required up front. Booking.com does some wonky things with hyperlinks, so the best thing is to include the raw URL for links.

Airbnb includes the passthrough email and phone number on the iCal. The rest require API integration to get that information in automatically, so I'm assuming you'll have API integration. If not you can use channel bridge for VRBO, and booking.com and TA would need emails entered manually.

Once you've got the passthrough/platform email address (or real guest email address in the case of HomeAway), the next step is to send them an email with the renter agreement signing link. The renter agreement signature process collects their real guest email address as well as the e-signature on your rental agreement template. Best way to do this is to create an email template and trigger on the booking created event, with a criteria for those channels (HomeAway, VRBO, booking.com, Airbnb, TA). Include the {BULEASE} merge field which is the renter agreement signing link. Here's an example (the example talks about Airbnb only, but the same technique works for the API integrated channels as well): https://www.ownerreservations.com/support/articles/airbnb-request-for-contact-info-real-email-address-and-signed-renter-agreement

After the renter agreement is signed and you've got the real guest email address on file, the rest of the process will run just like a direct booking, sending out your scheduled/triggered emails to the guest etc.

If you want to do the security deposit hold in OwnerRez for HomeAway and Booking.com, check the "use OwnerRez security deposit settings" option in the channel settings and note that you will be doing that in your house rules on the channel. For Airbnb and TA, they have their own methods of holding deposits, so you'd continue to use those.

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

I might have missed it, but the above should be a help topic... Perfect!

Chris Hynes
Registered: 10/19/12
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

You didn't miss it -- I was just thinking that myself as I was writing that out!

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Just make a help topic pointing to this thread, or tweeze out the critical parts from top to bottom under new help topic with a useful name. But this stuff is practically gold.

Maybe put it at the beginning of the connecting to a channel menu item

BlueMtnCabins
Registered: 6/6/16
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Chris Hynes said:

so my recommendation is to set TA to full payment required up front.

Guess what. TA no longer allows 100% upfront payment. I had that and they unilaterally overrode it 10 20/80% split. There was a big discussion in Say No group. They explained it by saying that way you get more bookings (not). They should try reducing their insane commissions.

So, TA is set to only take bookings 90 days out. Payment in full required in 60 days out. If some rare booking comes in....

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

My real intent is to use TA as a cpc/commission/sponsored placement model. Not FlipKey, etc

Essentially, it is like Google AdWords but within TA. So traffic goes to your (hosted) website, not through FlipKey or the TA vac rental portfolio. Therefore you control the payment, customers, etc. This is direct booking.
Ownerrez cannot currently do this, so I'm going to be using a PMS just for that function.I already discussed it with the owners here and I'm going to share my findings in case they wish to join the trip advisor group that can do this. I learned about this at a bed-and-breakfast forum, and they highly acclaim this method.

Vacation rentals cannot do this, so I'm presenting my rental units as Suites within a hotel.

BlueMtnCabins
Registered: 6/6/16
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

JTVRs said:

My real intent is to use TA as a cpc/commission/sponsored placement model. Not FlipKey, etc

Essentially, it is like Google AdWords but within TA. So traffic goes to your (hosted) website, not through FlipKey or the TA vac rental portfolio. Therefore you control the payment, customers, etc. This is direct booking.
Ownerrez cannot currently do this, so I'm going to be using a PMS just for that function.I already discussed it with the owners here and I'm going to share my findings in case they wish to join the trip advisor group that can do this. I learned about this at a bed-and-breakfast forum, and they highly acclaim this method.

Vacation rentals cannot do this, so I'm presenting my rental units as Suites within a hotel.


Not sure I understand. TA and Flipkey are the same, just like VRBO /Homeaway.
How does traffic goes to your hosted website from TA? Only few guests, I found , would find your property in TA (or other OTA) and then google it to find your direct site.

JTVRs
Registered: 6/25/18
Re: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, AirBnB, VRBO

Cpc/commission (tripconnect) and sponsored placements are totally different from FlipKey and TA's other VR sites. They direct visitors directly to your website, as opposed to being handled my FlipKey or their other vacation rental sites

In other words, the web traffic are your direct customers and not handled by TAs vacation rental sites.

Night and day

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