5 VRBO Reviews & Complaints By Owners
Vacation rental owners have been advertising their vacation homes on VRBO for years and in many cases with good results. However things are changing and vacation rental owners are complaining about the advertising services they receive from VRBO. There are several websites with unflattering reviews about the VRBO website and its recent changes written by the site’s advertisers.
It’s not uncommon for a big advertising website like VRBO to get complaints. It’s not a surprise someone is not happy with the services of VRBO. However the numbers of complaints are piling up more than ever recently.
Many owners contribute this to a number of reasons one of which is that VRBO.com and HomeAway are now being publicly traded. Vacation rental owners have stated they feel VRBO has lost touch with them as the customer. It appears things have changed on the vacation rental advertising front at VRBO. Rather than the vacation rental owner being their primary customers their new more important “customers” are share holders. This means keeping shareholders happy is their top priority but this often is not aligned with what owners want.
Vacation Rental Owners Vs Shareholders
Shareholders want more subscriptions & listings Vs Owners wanting less competition
Shareholders want higher listing charges Vs. Owners want better value for their money.
Shareholders want to make more money Vs. Owners want to make more bookings.
Shareholders and owners want different things can they both be satisfied? If so it looks like VRBO & HomeAway are having a hard time making it happen.
VRBO’s priority appears to be profits and that’s OK we are all in business to make money but the customer should always come first then profits follow. That’s the only business model that seems to be infallible. HomeAway now has new customers ever since it went public can it satisfy shareholders, vacation rental owners AND travelers?
How long can this business model last even the mightiest of empires can fall, will it and can it happen it to VRBO or HomAway? Or are vacation rental owners too dependant on them?
Here are a few of the complaints cited directly from the Homeaway’s website for your review.
1) VRBO inquiries dropping like a rock.
I took a look at my inquiry history on VRBO dashboard to compare the #’s for June 2012 to June 2011. I had more than twice the # of inquiries in 2011.
2)“Re: VRBO inquiries dropping like a rock. (Owner Review)
I also have experienced almost dead activity only having one inquire in since the beginning of June. This was last week. Even then the inquire asked me if dates were available in July and they are not. She could have easily looked at the calendar.”
3) Re: VRBO inquiries dropping like a rock. (VRBO Review)
I, too, have dropped out almost completely from getting inquiries from VRBO. I also have noted a >50% decrease in traffic during the past few months. Curious because I paid to have my VR well-positioned third from the top in 20+ listings. VRBO used to be my most productive listing site”
4) Re: VRBO inquiries dropping like a rock. ( VRBO Review)
I’ve had exactly 2 inquiries since Apr 29. Neither are groups that I would consider renting to. The one I got today at 1PM was sent on June 30 according to my dashboard. That’s 2 DAYS AGO!!!
This is TERRIBLE!!!!!
5) Re: VRBO inquiries dropping like a rock. (VRBO Complaint)
My inquiries from HomeAway and VRBO have also dropped. HomeAway used to be my leading source, but the last couple of months, they’ve dropped to third. Because of that I paid to jump from standard to silver (two levels) about two weeks ago. So far, that hasn’t helped. Here’s hoping it turns around for us all.
The owners that are less furious about the changes VRBO, HomeAway or any other listing make are owners who are less dependent on them. Vacation rental owners who have a diverse vacation rental advertising plan are less likely to feel trapped. Having several rental advertising strategies working together for you will help ensure your success and reduce the stress the “shareholder” mentality can force on owners. Obviously you can tell by the advertising reviews listed owners are concerned, frustrated and losing out on money but can owners, managers and advertisers help change this?
Vacation Rental Marketing Experts
Complaint of VRBO by Owners
In 2010 I began renting my Beachfront condo to short term
transient guest to cover my expenses with this condo. Like so many other property owners I turned
to the service that I used my self, VRBO.com (Acronym for Vacation Rentals By
Owner). Initially VRBO was nothing more
than a classified ad site for property owners to post their properties in
various categories based on location and amenities. Initially the process was pleasing and
enjoyable. Skip forward 5 years and there
is not a day that goes by where I do not think of a way to escape the necessary
evil in my life. VRBO! VRBO enacted a policy in 2011 that required
owners to allow reviews of their properties.
Prior to that, as an owner you could disallow or allow this
feature. As a digital consumer I
recalled the process Ebay.com has in place where the review process is not so
onerous. A purchaser may think twice
about leaving an embellished bad review in fear that they will be given one in
return for merely falsifying a review to be vengeful.
VRBO has completely stepped away from their roots. VRBO does not own my property, I do. My property is not a Hotel, its mine. I do not have to let people stay at my
property, I allow them to as my guest.
VRBO is spending a lot of its efforts to compete with the
http://www.expedia.com, http://www.travelocity.com, http://www.hotels.com market. Those sites are renting hotel rooms from
companies that rent hotel rooms.
Needless to say because VRBO has drifted so far away from
its initial vision it allows pure onerous reviews where a guest that just
chunked my TV out the window and lit my sofa on fire may post a negative review
about my property in the fact that I kept their $300 security deposit
I request assistance to return the power to the owners of
the properties (the people that pay VRBO.com’s salary) or even the playing
field by requiring guest to create a profile and get reviewed themselves as
well. Perhaps they may think twice
before hurling that TV out the window this time.
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