Loving systems

Last week I got an email from a potential guest enquiring about a room for one night.  I replied with a link to the room I recommended for him, and he emailed me back saying that after seeing the room and especially the video of me, he wanted to reserve for 3 nights.  He later went on to order dinner and one of our Champagne tours. This increased my customer spend from just €120 to just over €1200 How did this happen? By having a system to offer guests more

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Interview with Maggie van Santen and Becki Shaver

Maggie's background in business management and Becki's counselling expertise make a winning combination where their guests are concerned, and over the 7 years since Maggie and Becki have been running Hideaway Haven in Western Australia, they have won more than 20 hospitality, tourism and business awards! Here's what they say: Always play to your strengths and define your roles Keep your website up to date and active with blogs and social media Print marketing doesn't work any more - master online marketing Keep in touch with past guests so you're

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Is your business model skewed?

One of the many reasons I didn’t make any money from my little B&B hobby business, all those years ago, was because I didn’t understand the concept of a “business model”. I’d heard the term, for sure, but I thought business models were for big corporates, not for little businesses like me. After all, I’m just a little B&B business, what does it matter anyway, right? How wrong I was. I quickly realised that if I really wanted to make my business work for me, instead of me slaving away

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Why B&Bs don’t make money, Part 1

This is Part 1 in a series of 5 where I explore the reasons why most B&Bs are not making money I’ve been helping a small group of B&B owners recently, and I’ve noticed a few common threads as to why they’re not making the kind of money they deserve,  and so I’m going to share them here on this blog in the hope that if you find yourself thinking “that’s me”, then I’ll be able to give you some tips to get you moving , making more money and

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Why Bed and Breakfast Owners are Struggling, Part 2

Hello again and welcome.  It’s Yvonne here, with a couple more reasons why Bed and Breakfast businesses don’t make enough money.  So let’s get started with number one for today: Lack of personal and business boundaries.  I see this a lot with B&B owners, and because it’s really like having house guests, we sometimes feel we need to be on duty 24/7 to make sure that everyone is happy.  This is the fastest way to burn out and exhaustion, for sure.  Having that personal touch, contact with the owner of

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Four reasons why Bed and Breakfast Owners Struggle

Hello and welcome.  I’m Yvonne Halling, and I run a B&B just like you.  And until a few short years ago, I was struggling to attract the right guests and make enough money, and maybe that’s you too.  In my time as a B&B owner myself over the last 12 years, and more recently as a mentor to other B&B owners, I’ve identified at least 11 reasons  why B&B businesses don’t make enough money and today in this video, I’d like to share some of them with you. Not defining

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Hotel or Bed and Breakfast – What’s the Difference Anyway?

Why choose a B&B over a hotel ? An interesting question and sometimes the difference between the two is not fully understood.  Here’s my take on it. A B&B is someone’s home.  The owner/manager usually lives there and sometimes has separate accommodation, but often doesn’t.  Hotels are hotels, and it’s unlikely you’ll ever meet the owner. As a B&B guest, you get to chat with the owner, who usually has insider information about the local area and the people and places to meet and see.   They will often make appointments for

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Bed and Breakfasts and Booking.com

Third party booking engines – are they right for B&Bs ? If you don’t yet know how to identify and market to your target guest, then I suppose those large booking engines such as booking.com are useful.  Many of my mentoring clients tell me that they bring lots of business to their B&Bs, but at what cost? First, there’s the huge commissions they take for the privilege of having them do your job, ie: marketing.  My advice is to learn how to do it yourself, and be in control of your

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Bed and Breakfast Money Management

Key financials for busy B&B owners A common theme amongst B&B owners that I’ve noticed recently is that they are not sure if they’re making any money or not.  Many people who open a B&B are not business people and are running a kind of hobby business, but still I believe it’s necessary to know where you are financially, if only for your own peace of mind.  After all, this business is demanding and sometimes stressful, so you wouldn’t want to be doing it for nothing, would you? Here’s what

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Bed and Breakfast Exhaustion or Serenity?

Extreme Self care for the stressed out B&B owner Taking care of myself has become my mild obsession of late, and what I’ve noticed is that the more I take of myself, the more relaxed I am, and the happier the guests who write glowing reviews for me on Trip Advisor.  Strange, and perhaps contrarian, but here’s how it works:   I block off the online booking calendar and take a day off at least once a fortnight in the busy season, and once a week in the low season. 

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