Ten Tips for Your Outdoor Enthusiast B&B Guests
Many B&B's thrive in locations where there are plenty of outdoor enthusiasts. Being in a popular location for pursuits such as walking, climbing, horse riding and cycling means that there's a constant stream of guests and quite often they'll come out of the tourist season as well.
But how can you maximise the potential of your location and attract more guests to your B&B? Start A Bed & Breakfast has ten top tips to help you.
1. Become an Expert Outdoor EnthusiastRegardless of whether you are interested in the outdoor pursuits going on in the area around your B&B or not, it's critical that you become a central point of information for your guests. If you can tell them something that puts the icing on the cake of their visit, they will send word to others who enjoy the same activity.
And since the weather is of paramount importance for many outdoor enthusiasts, have computer connected to the Internet in one of the reception rooms so that customers can look up the weather and other information to help them get the best out of their visit.
2. Advertise to the MarketPlace adverts in magazines and websites that target the particular enthusiasts who could become your customers. Don't just place adverts either, become active in web forums, posting relevant information but always mentioning your B&B in your signature, and a URL if it's allowed.
3. Ask Your Guests What They WantIt's always a good idea for a B&B, or any business come to that, to ask their customers what extra facilities would make their stay more enjoyable. But if you're trying to specialise for particular outdoor activities there may be specific facilities or services that particular outdoor enthusiasts might appreciate that ordinary tourists wouldn't. And if you don't ask, you won't find out.
4. Offer Guests Packed LunchesOutdoor enthusiasts might be out all day in remote locations and not come across pubs, shops or other places to obtain refreshments. So it's a good idea to offer a range of packed lunches and consider including them in a special package price so that you are offering customers a complete service.
5. Create a Boot Room at Your B&BMany outdoor pursuits can be incredibly messy. Make sure there's a place where guests can take off their wet and muddy gear rather than traipse it all through the house. If you can find a supply of cheap disposable slippers consider offering them free for customers to use inside the B&B.
6. Offer Outdoor Pursuit DiscountsGet together with local relevant companies like pony trekking centres or canoe hire shops and negotiate discounts that you can offer to your guests. This is a win-win situation which could lead to both of you getting more customers.
7. Develop Local LinksGet to know the local facilities, shops and services that supply the outdoor enthusiast market. If you can summon a cycle mechanic to replace a chain or a surfboard repair technician at short notice your enthusiasts will become customers for ever.
8. Make Use of the Garage at Your B&BIf the outdoor pursuits that guests indulge in use a lot of sizeable equipment, like canoeing, surfing or cycling, think about turning your garage into a secure storage area with proper-sized racks and locking facilities. You might not think that you'll be a target for thieves but many of your guests will come from areas where it is a concern. If you can put their minds at rest they'll have a happier stay.
9. Use Your Tourism CentreIf your local tourism centres are alive to the attractions of the area and which outdoor pursuits they can cater for, they'll have a lot of leaflets, maps and other information that cater for enthusiasts. Get supplies from them and make sure that they know you're catering for particular markets. That way your B&B will be the first one that pops into their heads when people make enquiries.
10. Hire Outdoor Equipment to GuestsThis could be a tricky one as it can be difficult to have enough equipment on tap to cater for every guests needs. But if you are trying to attract outdoor enthusiasts of a very specialised sport, particular one that requires bulky equipment, you might get more custom if you can save customers the aggravation of dragging their own equipment with them.
We're sure there'll be other things that you'll think of that will help you build a name for your B&B among outdoor enthusiasts but this little lot should fire up the synapses and get you going about the possibilities.