Rental Photo Tips: Make Images Stand Out With These Tricks

Image and video usage has skyrocketed over the years. Visuals have become a major draw on websites, increase social media visibility and help generate more business over time. In fact, studies show that people remember 65% of the visual content they see three days later versus only 10% who remember written content three days later. However, many vacation rental managers still struggle with creating high-quality images. For those who need some advice, here are six rental photo tips that help images stand out.

6 Rental Photo Tips: Don’t Let Your Images Fall Short

rental photo tips itrip alabama beaches

Photo: iTrip Vacations® Alabama Beaches

Shoot Horizontal Photos

Horizontal photos display best on computers, laptops, tablets and phones. Most devices are set up to show horizontal photos rather than vertical photos.

Therefore, take horizontal photos of the rental, and only use vertical photos sparingly if the subject matter is much taller than it is wide. This usually only applies to public art and statues.

rental photo tips black bars

Photo with black bars.

Avoid Black Bars

Although experts recommend using a professional photographer or professional camera, some managers prefer to use their phone to take photos. If this rings true, take widescreen photos to avoid black bars. Not only do black bars decrease the photo size, they also distract online users because most vacation rental photos do not have them.

rental photo tips no black bars

Photo without black bars. See the difference!

Black bars remain a popular issue among iPhone users. To take full screen photos, select an aspect ratio of 16:9, or edit the photos and resave them. Read instructions on how to take widescreen photos on iPhone.

Most Android phones come set at 16:9, but changing to that ratio may be needed to eliminate black bars. To check, open the camera, click on settings and tap picture size to select the correct ratio.

rental photo tips stage

Photo: iTrip Vacations® Hilton Head Island

Set the Stage

Attractive photos help travelers imagine themselves in the rental. Stage each room and outdoor area as if guests are there. We don’t suggest wet towels in the floor, but arranging toiletries on the counter is one idea. Other ways to stage the rental include setting the dining room table and/or bar area, turning on the fireplace, restocking towels, adding a welcome basket, lining up kitchen appliances, and opening blinds and windows.

Setting the stage also helps create emotion between the potential customer and rental. Read about staging vacation rentals.

Pay Attention to Details

Small details make a big difference. They can make an outstanding photo loose its quality and appeal. Remember every detail stands out in a photo, even if the naked eye misses it.

Before taking a picture, look around the room. Is everything in order? Turn off the TV. Are pillows, knick-knacks and appliances organized? Look outside and make sure nothing undesirable is showing in the background. In addition, ensure the trash is empty, floor rugs and mats are clean, flowers and plants look healthy, and rooms look as bright as possible.

orlando mickey vacation kids

Take Lots of Photos

Take at least two photos per room, capture the front and back of the rental, take area photos, and highlight the rental’s top amenities. Aim to have at least 30 photos that potential guests can browse, bookmark and save. More photos captures more attention and may lead to more bookings.

In addition the more photos available, the further their reach. Use them in blog articles, marketing materials, enewsletters, social media posts and videos. High-quality images also help boost these content efforts to drive more awareness and potential business.

photo tips vacation rental experts

Photo: iTrip Vacations® Orlando

Include Area Photos

As a vacation rental professional, it’s easy to showcase the home and its appearance. However, visitors come to the area for local culture, things to do and restaurants, not necessarily for the rental. Therefore, managers should photograph the entire area.

Area photos help potential guests discover new things to do and determine their proximity to these attractions. Is the rental ski-in/ski-out or located near the beach? Is it located in a city center near theaters, shopping and sports? Consider the major attractions near the rental and photograph them. In Orlando, for example, include photos of Disney and Universal Studios. In ski destinations, take photos of the mountains and towns.

Want more rental photo tips? Read how to photos look their best.