Even though February is a shorter month, we managed to release a number of highly requested features while continuing to move toward providing vacation rental businesses with more customization, branding elements and control.
The theme for February was to build and release product updates that help businesses adopt Dtravel Direct while solving pain points. We’ve also been working on refining the way we build out customization features that can be tested by vacation rental businesses already successful in driving direct bookings before being rolled out to our greater customer base.
Let’s review all of the improvements we’ve recently made to our product in February as well as what’s coming next.
Automated Self-hosted Domains
Community Call #7
Manual reservations, a new and highly requested feature is now live and available to all businesses using Dtravel Direct to power their direct booking site.
Whether you’re using Dtravel to power your entire direct booking site or you’ve simply adopted the Dtravel Direct booking engine, you can access manual reservations by visiting the reservations tab in the Dtravel Direct dashboard.
Manual reservations enable businesses to create and send a custom reservation to their guests. This feature is extremely helpful when reservation details have been discussed over the phone, in an email or through any form of messaging communication.
When creating a manual reservation, you can customize the booking details including number of guests, dates, taxes, rates and personalize add-ons for any services you’d like to charge for, such as early check in / late checkout, airport transfer, sporting equipment rental, etc. You can also create urgency by selecting an expiry date and time for the manual reservation, so that the guest knows when they have to complete the booking by.
Watch our helpful video on how to create a manual reservation:
Watch video: How to Create a Manual Reservation
Brand building is a key component to finding success in direct bookings. A premium direct booking site is the cornerstone to any vacation rental brand. This is why we’re focused on helping vacation rental brands tell their story and build a brand that stands out from the competition. Providing businesses with the ability to easily add a self-hosted domain was an area of focus in February.
Previously, we made it possible for businesses to either adopt a Dtravel subdomain or add a self-hosted domain manually. With our latest update, we just made it easier for any business using Dtravel Direct to power their direct booking website with IONOS and GoDaddy.
You can now easily add a self-hosted domain purchased through either IONOS or GoDaddy in the Dtravel Direct dashboard settings without having to manually edit your DNS records within the domain registrar.
We've been working closely with vacation rental brands who not only believe in what we are building, but are already experienced in driving direct bookings to accelerate product development. This has allowed us to build what successful vacation rental brands need and want right now before rolling the updates out to short-term rental businesses just getting started in direct bookings.
If your business is currently driving direct bookings and you would like to upgrade your site, please book a call, we'd love to hear from you.
Over the past month, we’ve worked closely with Unwind Escapes, a vacation rental brand from Australia, to build a website powered by Dtravel Direct.
We have already begun work with a second brand, Instant Suites, which will unlock new design templates and features for Dtravel Direct’s greater customer base. Our strategy is to continue building for vacation rental brands who not only believe in our mission, but have experience with direct bookings. This way we can give short-term rental businesses just getting started with direct bookings a leg up by delivering winning designs and features.
We updated the UI/UX with the following changes:
Adjusted design and style components of checkout pages
Updated Apple Pay and Google Pay as an express checkout payment method
Redesigned filter / search pop-up on the create a manual reservation page
In case you missed our latest Community Call, you can get caught up to speed with everything Dtravel by checking out the Dtravel YouTube channel. During the call we covered topics related to product updates, upcoming integrations, media appearances and announced a new product to the Dtravel ecosystem that we’ve been working behind the scenes. Don’t forget to subscribe and hit the bell notification so that you can be the first to watch our latest videos.
In addition to providing more customization features, we’re working on more ways businesses can adopt the Dtravel Direct booking engine, with the following updates on the horizon:
PayPal integration, giving you and your guests even more payment options
Ability to add new pages, allowing you to host other content like an owner recruitment page, FAQ, blog, and more
Customizable reservation add-ons at booking (e.g. airport transfer, early check-in or late check-out, sporting equipment rental), providing guests the option to purchase additional services and helping you increase your average checkout value
A Wordpress widget for any business that wants to power their existing direct booking site with Dtravel Direct
Dtravel Direct insurance options to provide up to $5M of property protection for each booking
Free Guest Screenings for all Dtravel powered bookings
To help you get started with setting up a Dtravel powered direct booking site and advertising your site, we’re providing vacation rental businesses white glove onboarding support.
Contact us for a FREE marketing consultation to learn how you can grow your direct bookings.
Book a call: Complimentary Consultation