Preparing to welcome guests and updating your site

 

As we start to settle into this “new normal” it’s important to think about the future. Start to consider updates you can make to your site to ensure you maximise your occupancy and things run as smoothly as possible. 

 

Maintenance  

We always say it, but now more than ever it is important to master the fundamentals: clear walkways, check through kitchen equipment, give your space a fresh lick of paint, consider any furniture, sheets and towels that are looking tired. At this time, when cleanliness is even more important to us all, first impressions count and a well cared for space will set an even more important first impression to your guests.   

This article on ensuring great feedback has a good checklist to use to ensure you’ve covered everything.

 

Test the experience 

Stay in your space! It might be the first time in a long time that your space is available for you to stay in. Spend a night there or ask another member of your household to. This is the best way to see things through fresh eyes and discover what is missing, what needs replacing, and what you might want to change due to new expectations from guests around cleanliness and social distancing.  

Small additions  

If you always wanted to add a pizza oven, fire pit, outside bath tub, or outdoor cooking area but never had the opportunity now would be a great time to make those updates. Hot tubs continue to be our most popular experience with over 17,000 searches in a normal month. We know finances are tight for many of you now, so perhaps think about anything you could reuse and upcycle. Guests love something original and it differentiates your space from others.  There’s so many ‘how to’ videos on YouTube and Pinterest is a great source of ideas too.  You may find you can build something guests will love just using materials foraged from your land.  

Take a look at our previous articles on how to grow your business and what guests really want for some inspiration.

 

New spaces and investing in your site

Whilst now is a challenging time for us all, we know that some of your were in the middle of building new spaces or had plans to invest in your site this year. Clearly what you do and when is always an important decision and even more so now. We are expecting the domestic travel market and the demand for stays in nature to be very strong when restrictions ease and are anticipating this to continue in the next few years. So with no guests currently at your site, now might be the time to start thinking about expanding. We have a business development and consultancy team and make sure we support you in your decision making and where to invest. If you would like to contact them, please email ideas@canopyandstars.co.uk
 

Check through your listing   

Read through your listing and check if anything needs updating, it’s so important we have the correct information online as we start to take more bookings. You can send any page updates to owners@canopyandstars.co.uk which we will work through, but please note this may take some time as we continue to prioritise emails related to the Coronavirus situation. 

When travel restrictions begin to ease, you may want to consider getting some new photos if you don’t already have professional photography. It is another cost at this time but will significantly help to increase bookings for your space(s) long term.  And we’re in the middle of a beautiful spring so this is the best time to get good pictures.

If you would like to get some new photography please email owners@canopyandstars.co.uk and we can recommend a good photographer at a reasonable rate in your area.

 

Consider extending your season 

Consider opening until later in the year if you usually close in September or October, we saw a 30-40% increase in bookings for winter stays over the last two years and with restrictions eased, we are confident that this autumn will be stronger than usual. Customers will have more annual leave left than usual due to lockdown, increased need to escape the city and get into nature and millions of people having their international travel plans cancelled. You will need to consider how you can weatherproof your structure and if you can make it suitable for winter. This will help you to recoup any revenue lost due to lockdown restrictions.  

This article tells you how to extend your site’s season into winter and read top tips from owner Guy at Crafty Camping on preparing for the winter season.  

If your site is usually open for autumn but isn’t at full occupancy during this period think about how your space is currently being sold online. If you have any additional cosy photography of winter features that aren’t currently promoted on your listing we can make changes to your page once your summer occupancy has sold out.  

If you would like to talk to anyone on the Owners team about anything in this article or other advice, please email owners@canopyandstars.co.uk and we can schedule in a call with you.

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