joshschukman
by joshschukman
Posted August 19, 2022

If you’re an Outdoorsy owner and haven’t seen a booking in a while, it might be time to shift a few gears to help your listing stand out. You have several levers you can pull when it comes to getting more bookings for your RV on Outdoorsy — from pricing to calendar availability to listing quality to security deposit amounts and more — you’re truly in the driver’s seat when it comes to getting your RV rented out.  

Let’s dig in to discover some ways to work your rig out of a booking slump. 

Are Your Photos And Listing Description All They Can Be? 

Your first step is to take stock of your listing to ensure it’s doing all it needs to do. As a general rule, you should have 15-20+ high-quality photos that demonstrate all angles and features of your rig. Check out this guide we put together for additional tips on taking great listing photos

Next, check your listing title for any opportunities to call out local attractions near you. For example, do you live near a NASCAR track, national park, or other magnetic attraction? If so, consider adding these place names into your listing title so it grabs the attention of renters looking for rigs near those locations.

E.g. “Jayco Flight Near The Daytona 500”

Then, check out your listing description to keep it up to snuff. Renters are looking for the story of your rig and a detailed description of the amenities you offer — be sure your listing accomplishes these things. You could also call out local attractions again in your listing description as an extra reminder for renters that you are near their vacation destination. Here are more tips for writing a killer listing

Lastly, be sure your rig is categorized properly. If you have a Class B rig but accidentally categorize it as a campervan, you’ll probably show up as one of the highest-priced options when people filter their search for campervans. By properly categorizing your RV, you’ll keep your rental in the right price range when people filter for your class of RV. 

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How’s Your Pricing? 

As you might imagine, your nightly price is one of the biggest factors in a renter’s decision to book. Hop onto Outdoorsy.com, pick a few dates, and search for similar campers in your area. Your nightly price should generally be somewhere in the middle of what you find for other rentals — not the highest and not the lowest.

You could also check out a local RV rental dealership to compare your pricing to theirs, set seasonal rates so you’re charging more at high season and less at low season, and create special promotions for any major events coming to your area.  

Finally — when considering your nightly rate — it’s important to remember that renters pay for daily insurance charges, service fees, and any add-ons. This will make their final price higher than the nightly rate you set, so it’s advisable to put yourself in their shoes when determining your base rate. 

The Impact Of Security Deposits

Think about the last time you rented a car — would you have been turned off if they asked for an exorbitant security deposit to rent from them? Our guess is you’d probably look for a different rental company!

The same is true for RV renters. That’s why you should set your security deposit amount to a fair price relative to the class of RV you’re renting out. Security deposits on our platform generally range from $500-$1,500, but if you’re charging a $1,000 security deposit for a pop-up camper with minimal amenities, you might be scaring people away. On the other hand, if you’re only charging $750 for an ultra-lux Class A motorhome, you’re likely not charging enough to protect yourself. 

That’s why it’s helpful to consider modifying your security deposit amount as a way to get more bookings. While the security deposit is an important protection in the event your rig gets damaged, it’s not the only way you can protect your RV(s). You could do things like asking more questions of prospective renters, creating stronger rules for your listings, and putting GPS/speed tracking in your rig(s).

The bottom line is that it’s worth doing your homework and exploring what other similar rigs are charging for security deposits in your area to make sure that yours isn’t discouraging bookings for you. 

Cancellation Policy Strategies

Uber-strict cancellation policies can scare renters away just like sky-high security deposits. To recap, here are the cancellation policies you can choose from on Outdoorsy: 

  • Flexible — Renters get a 100% refund if they cancel more than 5 days before departure and a 25% refund if they cancel less than 5 days before departure.
  • Moderate — Renters get a 75% refund if they cancel more than 7 days before departure and a 50% refund if they cancel less than 7 days before departure.
  • Strict — Renters get a 50% refund if they cancel more than 14 days before departure and a 0% refund if they cancel less than 14 days before departure.

If you’ve gone some time without a booking, a less strict cancellation policy is one way to attract renters. That said — you should also weigh the costs to you of a fully flexible cancellation policy. If someone cancels more than 5 days out and gets a 100% refund, will you be able to rebook those dates?

How will you feel if this cancellation comes during a special event in your area when you know you’d otherwise be booked? These are important factors to weigh in your decision on the type of cancellation policy you choose. 

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Calendar Strategies

When you haven’t had a booking in a while, it’s important to double-check your availability calendar to ensure you’re maximizing open dates for your camper. It’s okay if you’d like your rig for yourself at popular times like Memorial Day, Independence Day, and Labor Day, but opening up even one of these holidays on your calendar could help you get bookings.

Additionally, you should check your Outdoorsy calendar against your personal plans and make sure you mark off days your rig is unavailable for pickup, drop-off, or renting to prevent a rental request at a time you can’t honor it. 

Once you’ve done that, explore your calendar to open up as many more bookable days as you can during the camping season. 

Closing Thoughts

It’s almost never about pulling just one lever to open the spigot of bookings for your RV. It’s usually a combination of factors that need to be addressed to help you get more bookings. You control things like adjusting pricing, lowering security deposits, offering delivery of your RV, improving your listing description, and more that can help you see increased bookings.

Factors like your location and nearby competition might not be as controllable, but if you focus on the things you have the power to change, you’ll set yourself up for success with your RV rental(s).

Ready to make your listing stand out? Login to your Outdoorsy dashboard here to access your listing and start implementing these tips right away.

joshschukman

 

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