You scouted out a great location. Bought the rental—or onboarded it to your management business—and maybe even renovated it. Furnished it with loving care. Equipped it with amenities you know travelers will enjoy.
And now you want to feature all the highlights of your home in your listing description.
We’re here to stop you.
At Guest Hook, we’ve written thousands of listing descriptions for properties ranging from city condos to sprawling country manors. And one thing holds true across the board: less is more.
Here’s our advice on what to include in your listing description, and what to leave for guests to discover later on in the booking process.
Include: Unique Selling Points
Your unique selling points are, hands down, the most important part of your property description.
To start, settle on the top three to five reasons guests choose your rental over others at your same price point. Then, weave them throughout your headline and the description.
Maybe it’s your heated pool, your family-friendly game room, your center-of-it-all location, or your stunning views. Whichever unique selling points you land on, remember: what’s unique in one market may come standard in another (and vice versa), so make sure your unique selling points are truly unique.
Think of the details that give your house character, and make sure they make your way into the listing description. If, for example, your home has a distinct theme or particular aesthetic, choose a few key details that highlight that.
Leave Out: A Few Pleasant Surprises
Nobody knows your rental better than you. It can be tempting to mention every single detail that makes it great.
Don’t! As you probably know, online readers have notoriously short attention spans. And while you may feel like including every detail paints a full picture for potential guests, what all that info really does is dilute your truly unique selling points. Many will skim right past them, or, worse, click away entirely—to someone else’s listing.
So go ahead and call out your heated infinity pool, but leave out the 15 super soft Egyptian cotton towels that are stocked in the pool house. They won’t go unappreciated—they’ll just be pleasant surprises for when your guests arrive! Guests rarely book because of tiny details, but they’ll certainly be delighted by them once they discover them during their stay.
If you’re worried that leaving these details out won’t give guest the full sense of how much you truly care about your guests, that’s a valid concern. But rather than listing out every detail to make your point, use your tone of voice to speak to guests warmly and tell the story of your rental to show how much you value great guest experiences.
And also consider this: if you provide the pleasant surprises, your reviews will confirm you’re a great host. And that’s far more powerful than you claiming to be one in your listing description.
Guests want to know exactly what they can expect at your rental. Will there be resort-style amenities, like a fitness center? Do you have a Smart TV for streaming Netflix? Is there a washer/dryer in the unit for keeping clothes fresh?
These are features that aren’t exactly unique selling points—they’re a bit too common for that—but they’re still nice perks that guests will want to know about.
Many listing sites have a separate amenities section, where you can simply check off what you provide from a master list. But those lists can be limiting (for example, Netflix isn’t included). And guests often miss this extra section altogether.
So, you have a couple options for quickly conveying these extra perks in the main body of your property description to make sure they’re seen:
If your property is bursting at the seams with must-mention onsite amenities (like a resort condo, for example), it’s worth considering a bulleted list within the description to succinctly share them all.
If, on the other hand, you have fewer than 10 amenities to list (still nothing to sneeze at!), instead of a list format, work them into the story you’re telling in the listing description.
Before you do, though, think about whether they’re expected. For example, unless they’re uncommon for your destination, things like WiFi and air conditioning may not be worth a shout-out—especially if you can check them off that separate amenities list mentioned above.
Leave Out: Technical Information
If you’re explaining how to use your TV remote in your listing description, you’ve gone too far. If you’re listing out the commands your Alexa will respond to, cease and desist. If you’re giving out your WiFi password, you’re jumping the gun.
We think you get the point.
All of this information is super important…to include in your guest welcome book. But guests come to your listing description with hopes of falling in love with your property, not to be forced to think about all the nitty gritty details.
Include: Specific Location Information
Especially if your property is in an area where there’s a lot of vacation rentals (hello, Orlando!), providing specific location information is crucial.
We’re not suggesting you give out your house address. But if you live in a specific neighborhood that’s known for its sense of community or serenity, that’s worth mentioning. If you’re next door to a beloved restaurant, make it known. And if guests can walk from your property to a beach, theme park, Main Street, and so on…that’s important.
Don’t just talk about your destination. It’s likely that by the time a guest gets to your listing, they’re already sold on the destination. Talk about why your place within that destination is one worth booking for.
Leave Out: Complete Directories
It’s a great idea to mention nearby conveniences—and how far away your rental is from the top attractions in your destination—but avoid the urge to include a full directory.
Your guest welcome book is a great place to list out all of the local restaurants, their cuisine types, and addresses and phone numbers. Your vacation rental listing is not.
As a host, you might view giving this information out as helpful. And it is—but not at this point in the booking journey. When it comes to super detailed location information, save it until after they’ve booked.
Need help writing your vacation rental listing?
Guest Hook to the rescue! Hire one of our professional copywriters and let us write a listing that hits all the high notes without including extra fluff. Learn more today.