How to improve your ranking on Booking.com?

Booking.com's algorithm is quite secretive, but there are still ways to improve your ranking and get to the top pages of results!


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Booking.com is the world leader in the market with 1 billion users, and is currently a must if you want to maximise your visibility and attractiveness. In 2018, 20% of Booking.com's revenue came from vacation rental listings. (Source: TourHebdo) AirBnb has to be careful...

When a user arrives on Booking.com with only one destination and one type of accommodation in mind, the ranking will play a very important role: if your property is in the 6th position, it will be in the top 10.ème page, you naturally risk losing a significant number of potential customers; at least, you will lose many more than if you are located in 1era or 2ème page. It makes sense!

But how does Booking.com manage this famous ranking?

According to Booking.com, the ranking is based on " the customer's preferences, taking into account the customer's previous search behaviour, the specific market dynamics and the dynamics of the market and the overall performance of the establishments on our performance on our site. "

As you can see, the order in which Booking.com displays results will not be the same for everyone, but will be personalized according to the customer's preferences and profile. But not only that...

Very little concrete information is available today on this subject, so I have summarized the key points I found through my research in this article. Enjoy reading!

What are the different positioning factors on Booking.com?

  • Your conversion rate This is the rate of reservation of your property compared to the number of visits. If 100 people clicked on your ad and 5 people booked, your conversion rate is 5%. This rate is one of the key performance indicators of your establishment and will have a great influence on your positioning.
  • Customer preferences : You can't do anything about this factor. Booking.com's algorithm analyses the previous searches of customers and proposes offers similar to those already searched and/or booked. This is a good thing, because it allows you to display your offer to a target group that corresponds to you.
  • Your availability If your establishment is not available on the dates selected by the user, it will not be displayed in the search results.
  • Selection criteria : Obviously, if the user has checked the filter "3 bedrooms minimum" and you rent a studio, your ad will not be displayed.

What affects your visibility?

  • Your descriptions If you do not provide complete information about your property, Booking.com will penalise you. In your extranet you can see your percentage of information to be filled in. If it is not 100%, Booking will sanction you.
  • The photos The most important factor in maximizing your conversion rate. Photos are the 1ers elements looked at by the users and one of the main criteria of choice. And often the photos are not enough and are of average/poor quality. Don't hesitate to call on a professional photographerIt's really worth it.
  • The competition : you must be competitive in your market. If 3 other rentals, in the same city and for the same surface are 20€/night cheaper than your own rental, you will obviously be less well ranked. On the other hand, you will be highlighted if you offer a very competitive price compared to your competitors.
  • Your rating The filters "Very good: 8+" and "Fabulous: 9+" are in the popular filters, many Booking.com users use the rating filters to select their goods. If you are below 8, it gets complicated...
  • Managing your payments If any of your payments are pending, outstanding or overdue, Booking.com may take your listing "offline".

What makes you stand out?

  • Positive comments They can often have more impact than the quality of your ad and your rating! Almost 9 out of 10 people read them and choose their goods according to these comments. It is therefore necessary to encourage your customers to publish a review, but also to respond systematically.
  • The photos : We will never stop repeating it, publish great pictures, call a professional, and put forward your rentals ! It is thanks to these photos that your customers will make their choiceSo we have to go all out.
  • The immediacy of responses to requests The more quickly you respond to the messages you receive, the more you will increase your conversion rate, and the better you will be placed. Indeed, according to a study by TripAdvisor, owners who respond to messages within 6 hours are twice as likely to convert.
  • The answer to ALL requests This may seem obvious, but even if your answer is no, all requests must be met. Never leave potential customers without answers.

New for 2019: the Genius loyalty program

Exclusive loyalty program, Genius allows you to be put forward and attract Booking.com's most loyal customers. " On average, partners who join the Genius program increase their bookings by 18 % and their revenues by 17 % ". 5 criteria are required to join Genius: be open for booking on the platform, have at least 5 customer reviews, have at least 7.5/10, meet Booking.com's pricing criteria and be one of the 50%s of the best performing establishments in your city/region.

This program simply proposes additional discounts for customersThis is the reason for the increase in bookings.

To summarize, here are the tips to apply to increase your ranking in Booking.com:

  • Join the Genius Programaka "Genius Program" explained above
  • Offer constant availability Avoid "minimum stay", often practiced in hotels, they will naturally lower your ranking. Make sure you are always available, every night, without restrictions.
  • Manage your payments perfectly You must not have any pending, outstanding or overdue payments. If you do, you run the risk of Booking.com taking your listing offline, which will affect your visibility immediately. All your payments should be made on time and this is a criteria that is often overlooked.
  • Make sure your descriptions are accurate As mentioned below, your descriptions must be filled in at 100%. If not, your score will be affected. You must also be consistent: If you post a photo of a hot tub, you must add a "hot tub" tag to your photo for all products and services available in your location.
  • Offer the right price The Booking.com algorithm will detect if your price is not competitive. There are many tools to find out if you are renting at the right price, but you can also do your research manually! Do a search on Booking.com adding all the filters for your own rental, and look at the prices of the listings. If the prices are similar to yours, you are competitive.
  • Join the " Preferred Program "Well, you have to be part of the 30% of the best performing establishments in your area, the commission is slightly higher, and you have to meet 5 criteria, so it's not possible for everyone. But this program promises you +65% visitors and +35% bookings. It's worth checking out!
  • Reply to all comments It is very important, whether your answers have a positive or negative impact, it plays a major role in your visibility.
  • Tariff parity Even if the contractual rate parity clause is no longer mandatory, Booking.com's algorithms will lower your ranking if you offer lower rates on your own website.
  • Offer to take a deposit with Swikly Swikly : Without debit or impact on the credit card ceiling, the Swikly deposit is dematerialized and much more practical, both for the renter and the tenant. A traditional deposit can sometimes slow down some customers.

Whatever happens, remember that Booking.com is " user-centric "user-centred, with the aim of to make the purchasing process as easy as possible. Propose detailed and quality ads, answer to comments, propose a coherent price, and attract your potential tenants!

As you can see, you need to do everything to improve your positioning on Booking.com, but you also need to do everything to maximize your online bookings !

Sources: Booking.com, TripAdvisor, TourHebdo

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