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How To Get Your Vacation Rental on Top of Google

I often have owners ask me “Jay, how can you help us market our vacation rental?”

As a matter of fact, I recently had an owner inquire about getting a free trial to see what kind of awesome vacation rental marketing services we could provide to them.

Now, you know I give a lot of my stuff away for free… but unfortunately, due to the amount of time and resources dedicated to push our clients up the Google ladder, I simply can’t provide a free trial.

Plus, I believe  I’ve already shown the proof of our abilities in all the work I do in the rental community.

You see, unlike traditional vacation rental listing websites, we at Villa Marketers don’t just post a listing of your property online and call it a day.

We literally help you build your own VR business by leveraging the infinite internet opportunities that get your home found on Google and, ultimately, generate more exposure and more bookings for you.

Did you know that over 62% of travelers go to Google first before ANY travel website? Isn’t that where your property should be?

These travelers are not going to VRBO, or Expedia first, and that is why you need to have your property easily found in Google. This strategy for marketing vacation rentals helps you rely  a whole lot less on those big vacation rental listing sites like HomeAway, VRBO, Flipkey, and AirBnB.

Wouldn’t it be nice if your vacation home was found on the top of Google search results? But how do you do that? We’re going to show you how it’s done with real RESULTS!


Vacation Rental SEO Success Story

One of the most effective ways we market an owner’s vacation property and get it found on Google is through something called Search Engine Optimization and keyword research. (Click here to watch my video and find out more about SEO.)

pepes hideaway owner pepe

Let me share an example of successful SEO marketing by introducing you to a client of mine I’ve really enjoyed working with, Pepe.

Pepe is a “tell you how it is” kind of guy that had a preexisting website for his hotel in Manzanillo, Mexico. He reached out to me just a few weeks back and asked me to help with SEO for a vacation rental site of his.

He offers an all-inclusive experience for travelers, called Pepe’s Hideaway. His property consists of several authentic Mexican bungalows that boast breathtaking views of the ocean.


This is a shot from one of his Manzanillo bungalows:




I accepted Pepe as a client and I began to work on his rental website’s SEO. I conducted keyword research to target exactly which keywords would be best for us to try and compete for.

Now, Pepe would be the first to admit that he doesn’t know a lot about SEO… he just knows he wants to be on the top 10 of Google where travelers are!

It’s important to remember, though, that when you’re doing keyword research for a vacation rental, you want to start with the “low hanging fruit” and make your way up the “SEO Tree” for that bigger fruit. Click this link to watch a Vacation Rental SEO video I created all about longtail keywords and the best SEO practices.

It’s a process. But if done properly, you WILL indeed increase your exposure.  In the case with Pepe, we achieved results in just a few weeks. Sometimes it can take a bit longer. The variable is up to Google on how far they will move us up in search engine rankings, and marketers don’t have control of Google and how they rank you.

(So keep in mind… when some “marketer” sends you an email telling you “we’ll get you on Google’s top 10!” they’re probably lying!)

Yes, of course it CAN happen. But until then, it takes some aggressive marketing and patience! SEO will get you an incredibly higher rank in Google, and often times you do reach the top 10 list on Google, like we did for Pepe!

So with that being said, below is the proof that SEO does, in fact, work as a way to market your vacation rental. I won’t just tell you about SEO…I want to show you how it works. Pepe’s website still has a long way to go and more opportunities in front of us, but take a peek at the incredible progress Pepe and our expert vacation rental SEO team have made in such a very short time.

I’m sharing some ranking for Pepe’s website with you. I will keep this as brief and as simple as I know how!


A Look at Pepe’s Website Rankings

With the work we’ve done so far for Pepe, he’s now on Google’s top 10 list for several relevant keywords.

• Pepe is ranking # 10 on the 1st page of Google for the keyword “Manzanillo Hotel”  and we are inching our way even higher.

 manzanillo hotel keyword results for seo


pepes hotel seo results


• We’ve also managed to bring Pepe to # 4 on Google for the term “Manzanillo Bungalow” and #7 for this term on the Bing search engine.

• In addition to the above, we were able to rank Pepe #5 on Google and #7 on Bing for the plural version “Manzanillo Bunalows”.

Remember, you’ll get exposure from all the search engines, even the smaller ones, and there are thousands of those. It all equals more online visibility.

• He’s also ranking on the 1st page of Google for “Manzanillo Videos”.


using keywords to be found in google

This is a SEO strategy of mine, to use videos and photographs to lure travelers to your website.  A traveler looking for videos of Manzanillo is likely planning a trip there, and “Manzanillo Videos” is a keyword we can compete for that VRBO isn’t focusing on. Now, when a traveler is looking for a Manzanillo video, Pepe gets seen by these travelers and is considered for lodging without all the competition from those sites.

We ain’t done yet! We are beginning to rank for a variety of different keywords.

  • We’re ranking #11 for “Hotels in Manzanillo”.

That’s just one away from being on the 1st page of Google for this keyword phrase .


keywords for vacation rentals



Now that we’re on the 1st page of Google, we are competing with big travel sites like Priceline (thought to be an impossibility by some). So, for those of you who’ve thought there’s no way in hell a small property owner can compete with the big dogs at Homeaway, VRBO, or Priceline, don’t be so negative about what you can accomplish. It now has been proven; it can be done!

Also, take a look at the video and post in my recent series “Vacation Rental SEO 101” to get all the proof and helpful tips you need!


Now It’s Your Turn!

They say that the “proof is in the pudding”… and as you can see, SEO can take you from being an obscure listing on a single website to actually being in the top 10 found properties on Google, the largest search engine used by travelers and pretty much everyone.

In honor of Pepe’s SEO success, I’d like to give those who have wanted to utilize SEO in their rental marketing an opportunity to claim their rightful place on Google. The price for our vacation rental SEO services will be going up soon, so don’t miss out on your chance to save money and become a Google success story like Pepe.

Offer #1: Keyword Research

So, here is an exclusive promo code for 15 % off of Keyword Research, or in other words, your “secret sauce” for SEO success. You can hear more about the importance of your keyword master list here: >>>

PROMO CODE: secretkeywords

 Offer #2: SEO Website Optimization

If you have your own website, then use this 10% off promo code for SEO website optimization.

Basically, this is for infusing that “secret sauce” Keyword Research into your actual website and its content. This makes your site a search engine magnet.


Remember, over 40% of owners who use SEO and track their return on investment achieve a return in excess of 500%!

We work one-on-one with our clients, so there are very limited slots to use this offer. Visit the store now before all promo code spots fill up.

Hurry, Contact Us Now to Secure Your Spot!

Tired Of Marketing You Vacation Rental? Push The Easy Button


  • Peter Torres says:

    Hi Jay,

    I checked Pepe’s site, nicely written, not over the top keyword stuffing, but….. turn on spell checker and fix the error for the word “Supurb” on his first page…. look for it here; “All are special and perched almost on the water where the crashing sea lulls you to sleep at night. There is a supurd beach nearby with a private beach. Final directions to the entrance are “turn left at the monkey cage”……

    • Jay William says:

      Hi there Peter,

      Glad to have you stop by! With Pepe we didn’t design the site or create the initial text. I began with keyword reseach and then optimizing the site with SEO tags. Some of the folks updating the site for them are from Mexico, so english isn’t their first language. I’ll have Pepe look at the typos. Thanks for pointing that out. This site had problems…it was being penalized by Google so the typos were the least of its worries.. There is still plenty of opportunities for improvements which we’ll be working on. I wanted to create this case study so everyone can see that within a fairly short amount of time they can climb up the Google ladder too using SEO.

      • Peter Torres says:

        Hi Jay, thanks for the reply. We are here in the Philippines so I do understand the typo issues.
        We keenly look forward to all of your posts & really appreciate your “non – jargon” style of disseminating information, after all we are hospitality people and SEO continues to be somewhat of a mystery for us. Thanks for being so open and sharing Jay, it is a massive help.
        We are fortunate to rank on the first page of Google for the last couple of years, the difference in inquiry volume, from second to first page is profound. Since assuming this “hallowed” position all of our 6 apartments have a year round occupancy of 84%, with just 7% coming from Flipkey. With Google forever changing the “goal posts”, it is a constant effort to maintain our ranking, so many thanks for keeping us informed of the dynamics of search engine success. Best wishes from The Philippines.

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