A New Generation of Vacation Listing has Arrived
Despite the fact that I am best known for developing software like Wall Worm and as a journalist-turned-blogger, my professional life has been in the field of web development. The vast majority of my time in the last decade has been working for a vacation home listing site in Florida. Over that time I oversaw turning the owner's ideas and vision into functioning websites. When my time with that company finally ended, I had to make the decision about what I'd do in the future—although my heart and soul are in creative arts, almost all of my professional experience is tied directly to the online vacation industry.
With my longtime partner and friend Andrew Penry, I opted to turn all of this experience into a whole new way of connecting vacation home owners and vacationers. Thus, we developed QuickVillas.
While building QuickVillas, we decided that we had to do something many other sites are incapable of doing—balancing needs of villa owners, vacationers, and ourselves. Over the years I've noticed that sites often focus on one side of that triumvirate. For example, some websites cater to home owners and give the vacationer no way of controlling how their contact information is used. Others hurt owners by listing so many homes that individual homes are lost in a sea of competing homes. And yet others cater to the site owners (some vacation listing sites are owned by people who also own homes—which are featured above other homes... which could be construed as an unfair conflict of interest).
When we developed QuickVillas, we immediately decided to do something almost unheard of in the vacation industry—make a clean, uncluttered website. Many vacation home listing sites hire search engine optimization specialists that almost invariably give the owners the same set of advice that makes them cluttered messes—the sites are filled with giant lists of links that clutter and confuse visitors. Other vacation listing sites look like they were built over a decade ago and never changed. We decided to have none of that. Instead, we focused on ease-of-use and aesthetics. Moreover, we made the site the first (as far as I can tell) mobile-friendly vacation site. While some sites can work on mobile devices, we made our site properly scale across devices—so you can use the site on a desktop, laptop, tablet or smart phone.
We've also given both home owners and vacationers new industry-changing communication tools. Vacationers create an interest list much like you'd create a shopping cart on a retail site. From there, the vacationer can communicate with those home owners. Both vacationers and home owners have the control over how much information is shared and how long communication will last (which is impossible on other systems where all communications are done via sharing email addresses directly). Our system works in real-time, akin to chat.
While QuickVillas has many of the same standard features that other sites have (like online calendars, picture galleries, descriptions, amenities, maps) it sets a new bar for vacation home listing because it creates a clean, high-standard atmosphere alongside cutting-edge technology. And we have added an innovative search feature that, to my knowledge, doesn't exist yet anywhere else—vacationers can search for homes available for an arbitrary range of consecutive nights inside a larger range of start/end dates. For example, if you know you want to visit Orlando for a week in February but are not set on a specific week, you can find homes that have seven days in a row available sometime during that month.
One of the benefits that QuickVillas has over other sites is this simple fact—it is developed and run by people who actually know web technology intimately. I've run across a multitude of other listing sites for vacation homes and can see immediately that the people behind them do not really know much about web technologies. Many are built with amateur website tools, cookie-cutter templates and/or thrown together in an ad hoc fashion. We took the time to plan out all the functions in advance, balancing the needs of vacation home owners and vacationers in the context of current and trending technologies.
While QuickVillas is still brand new, I am excited to share it with the world. Once the word gets out about it, I am confident that it will be the standard-bearer for what a vacation home listing website ought to be. I'm happy to know that I was part of starting a lot of this innovation.
If you own a vacation home, consider listing your home (it won't be long before we start generating leads and bookings). If you know a vacation home owner or vacation management company, please share this information with them. And if you are looking for a vacation home to stay in, bookmark QuickVillas—it will start growing soon.
Learn more at https://www.quickvillas.com/register.php.