Q:Can you tell me who you market your property to?
It depends on the season. Weekly family rentals in the summer, couples in the fall, hunters and fisherman during the hunting/fishing season . Snowmobilers in the winter (we are really close to the trail). We consider the current exchange rate as a good opportunity to expand our business to the US market as long as the gas prices are low and the exchange rate remains favorable for US travellers. The medium size groups (30 to 80 guests) are shown great potential in 2018. Fall 2017 brought a lot of foreign tourists, especially from US and China.
Q:Do you have “professional” business plan?
Yes, the feasibility study was completed by the well-known consulting company ” Hospitality Plus” in 2014. The experts estimated our potential sales about $217 000/annually.
Q:How are you doing compared to the other resorts? (or other questions like that).
I do not really know. We are growing fast, and we just a little bit below the numbers projected in the feasibility study from Hospitality Plus. Our sales is $179 000 in the year 2017. We provide to the guest self-catering cottages, so our expenses are really small. We do not try to maximize profits, as long as personal comfort and relaxing life are important for us. There are a lot of income potential with restaurant, extra services, winter operations and equipment rentals.
Q: level of occupancy.
We have reached sales of $179 000 in 2017, but we still have a huge potential to grow, especially in April, May, Sept, October. We did not work for winter 2016-2017 for personal reasons, although these period has a big potential if you can involve snowmobilers and ice fishing experts.
Q: Do you have repeating reservations?
Yes. Repeating clients are responsible for the significant growth in our income. The fastest growing segments – are the big groups, mainly from the Ottawa, who book the most of our resort a couple times per year.
Q: What are your marketing channels:
Most our sale goes from internet and from our loyal clients. We use a system of websites and paid advertising campaigns to sell in Ontario. I believe we are very cost efficient in contextual advertising, with cost of visit starting $0.03 and cost of sale starting $1.63.
Contextual advertising and internet catalogues are responsible for the most of our sales. The rest of sales are goes from the booking engines (Expedia, BookingCom, TripAdviser).
The booking engines are the second fast growing sales channel, after the guest referrals. In the next year we will limit cottages available for the booking engines in the High Season (as long as cost of sale reach 15%, i.e. $75), but we will intensify cooperations with the booking engines for the April, May, October, to increase the income.
Q: What is the level of client satisfaction?
Most of our clients are happy about stay with us. For example, the 91% of TravelZoo clients are happy about the stay, and 79% are want to visit us again.