100,000 pictures in Finland's largest online holiday home service
Lomarengas Group includes the parent company Lomarengas Oy, Ylläs Matkailu Oy (Ylläs Travel), Villi Pohjola Oy and KRT Yhtiöt Oy. In 2017, the group turnover was about EUR 32 million and the number of employees 38. Ylläs Travel is the leading accommodation booking center in Ylläs. KRT Group is a real estate specialist in the Levi region. Villi Pohjola Oy is a nature tourism company.
100,000 pictures in Finland’s largest online holiday home service
Founded in 1967, Lomarengas is 100% Finnish, the oldest and largest company that rents holiday homes in Finland. The company provides cottages, villas and apartments in its online service. A selection of about 4,000 destinations covers everything from beach cottages to ski apartments and luxury villas to forest huts.
“Every holiday destination is inspected and its condition is verified,” says Pekka Huttunen, Marketing Manager at Lomarengas. “Most of our customers are family-oriented. It is interesting that kids are often involved in the selection of cottages as well as adults!”
This is the way the holiday cottage is selected
For a refreshing and relaxing holiday for everyone, the holiday home and holiday activity base that will please the whole famile can be selected from the Lomarengas online service.
“The first step criterias: the distance from home should be 2-3 hours, and the price-quality ratio of the cottage should be appropriate. In the light of these criteria, you will browse through the selection of cottages. Buyers visit our online service for an average of six times in 2-3 days, and the average turnaround time for the purchase process is 30 minutes,” Pekka Huttunen summed up.
“The most important selection criteria definitely are the pictures of cottages. Our customers spend a lot of time with our photos. Visuality and atmosphere sell.”
Domesticity is important in choosing a partner
“We have dozens of photographers who are traveling around Finland taking pictures of cottages. Images are processed, colour-corrected and generally made attractive. Each cottage has 20-25 pictures. Since there are about 4,000 items, we have a total of over 100,000 images. This awesome and massive number of images is now in Gredi Content Hub,” says Pekka Huttunen. “Gredi was recommended to us by Tietotalo, our technical partner.”
“We chose Gredi because it is domestic, reliable and secure. Gredi’s data is securely stored on servers located in Finland.”
“Because our customer experience is essential to us, we wanted to significantly increase the image sizes on our online service and improve the user experience. These two things became possible when we chose Gredi as the digital asset management partner,” says Pekka Huttunen. In the online service, customers enjoy browsing through pictures and making up their mind what type of cottage and what kind of landscape they want for the vacation.
Introducing a common operating model, tools and deployment
Gredi Content Hub enabled Lomarengas to share common practices, tools and automated processes. Materials, such as images, are automatically integrated when content providers, such as photographers, store the material they want. The stored image is transferred to the Lomarengas online service thanks to Gredi’s integration.
How successful was the implementation? “Of course, our photographers first had to learn a new operating model. It went smoothly and easily. The big challenge is to maintain the folder structure now and in the future because of the large number of images,” says Pekka Huttunen.
The business is open all year round and reservations are done even years in advance
“We can always find accommodation for our customers. Even though Lapland’s Christmas season is usually sold out already in November there are still cottages available in other parts of Finland. The summer season begins immediately after the midsummer. Many reserve their cottage for their summer holidays early in the winter, some even for many years in advance,” says Pekka Huttunen.
What about the future? Are there any videos and 360-degree panoramas as sales tools? “Technically, we can link videos and panoramas to our online service. We also use the feel-good videos for marketing. The versatile photo selection of cottages is still the one that sells best. Our customers like to browse atmospheric photos at their leisure,” Pekka Huttunen says.
Gredi has automated the important business process of Lomarengas. The Lomarengas online service, in turn, covers all stages of selecting, booking and paying for a holiday home. Detailed destination descriptions, photos, equipment lists, and map location help customers choose the destination. Customer comments, recommendations and ratings act as good indicators and boost sales. The success of Lomarengas is measured by the online service, surveying users how well we managed to help them find a suitable cottage. Important quality data is constantly accumulating, as 40,000 visitors per week visit Finland’s largest holiday cottage portal.