The templates are really the core of the inquiry management system. What makes the templates so great is that the template responses can be varied depending on whether the property is or is not available. Read more about auto responses versus auto templates in the Basic Understandings section.
This section explains how to set up templates and use them within the inquiry management system.
Default Email Response Templates
The application loads three default templates that can be used (and edited immediately).
- The pencil icon is the icon for edit
- The revert arrow will reload the default template. Thus, if you make a mistake using the default template and want to change it back to the original, the revert arrow will allow you to do restore it to its original state.
Property Not Available - Default Response Template
The templates have been designed to create maximum flexibility when responding to the guest. Here are some tips to maximize the effectiveness of your templates:
- Make your responses conversational and write your templates in a manner that doesn't look like a system generated response.
- Response time is crucial. Getting a great response back to the guest FAST will result in considerably more bookings. Just as important is...
- Responding with valuable information. Guest inquiries can be tamed quite easily as 80% or more of them all request the same information (availability, pricing, quoting, more images and FAQs). Design your auto responses or auto templates to contain all of this information and you will increase your response times 100 fold while providing the right information to the guest immediately. Your bookings and guest satisfaction will skyrocket. You will be rewarded for understanding the pain of a typical VRBO / FlipKey inquiry. They've submitted a lot of inquiries and large percentages of those inquiries won't ever get a response or will get a response 1 to 3 days after the fact.
Let's review the example above:
- Variables. Variables allow you to pull information from the database and include that information within each template. It'sa powerful option to tailor each response to each guest.
- [PTITLE] is an example of a variable. The brackets will be replaced with data. In this example [PTITLE] means Property Title. Each inquiry has an associated property, therefore that property can be referenced within the email response.
- [AUTOSUGGEST] is an amazing feature that will help you upsell properties that are available, even though the property the guest inquired about might already be taken. [AUTOSUGGEST] will pull similar properties from the database THAT HAVE AVAILABILITY and link to those properties for the guest to research and consider. It's an innovative and easy way to turn inquiries for unavailable properties into bookings by suggesting other similar properties that are available. Learn more about the [AUTOSUGGEST] feature.
- [CURL] is a variable that stands for "Company URL" and will insert the URL to your company's website in the response.
There are a lot of variables that are not defined within the Email Response Templates page. Go to our full listing of all variables and learn what they do!
Response Template - HTML Editing
Ideally you will have one set of paragraph tags <p></p> to start and end the response. If you see additional <p></p> tags within the response you can remove them as they will create additional line breaks. Instead use the line break tag <br /> at the end of each sentence in which you require a line space. Make sure to "Update" your HTMl at the bottom of the page. Play with the formatting a little until you get it to display the way you require.