Top 10 Airbnb Hosting Hacks!

Top 10 Airbnb Hosting Hacks!

Hey there hosts! Take a guess at what we're about to share? Don't tell a soul we told you, but we're about to reveal some magic mantras to successfully optimize your Airbnb listing along with a few tips and tricks we have up our sleeves to help you make hosting a breeze!

Our first goal is to give you a simple idea of how vast and dynamic the Airbnb short-term rental (STR) business is becoming by sharing a few latest stats. In the past few years, Airbnb has grown into a 5.6 million listing site and is particularly popular among millennials in recent years. It has also been booked by over 900 million guests and is now found in 100,000 cities across 220 countries.

Top 10 hacks for Airbnb hosts

1 - Earn Superhost Status 2 - Snoop the Scoop 3 - Robust Response time 4 - Seize the Details 5 - Explain your space Eloquently 6 - Take Photographs that "Pop" 7 - Rave Reviews 8 - Spur on Social media 9- Check in - Check out 10 - Under-promise - over-deliver

How Can Airbnb SEO Helps Hosts Increase Their Rankings

As you must already know, short-term vacation rental competition is fierce, and to get found among thousands of other listings, the trick is to rank as high as possible in their search engine.

The Airbnb search ranking algorithm is designed to help guests find their ideal Airbnb and to help hosts find guests who are the perfect fit for their space.While Airbnb's algorithm is a secret, they have disclosed that the 100 factors fall into three categories in order to determine which listing will appear higher in search results. In brief, they are as follows:

  1. Guest needs: Airbnb examines the guest's location when searching, their previous trips, what listings they've put on their Wish Lists, and more.
  2. Listing details: Among the factors, Airbnb considers the total number of five-star reviews, the listing price, location, whether Instant Book is on, first response time and other contributing factors.
  3. Trip details: Airbnb considers the number of guests traveling, the length of the trip, when it is planned and if there is a minimum or maximum price, and many other variables.

This is where we offer you some insider tips about each touch point in order to optimize the attractiveness of your listing. To ensure that your listing gets noticed - and subsequently booked - come along as we uncover the top 10 hosting hacks!

HostingHack 1 - Earn Superhost Status!

Reaching Superhost status is a great way to wow your guests, and increase your bookings. Becoming a superhost for Airbnb takes some effort but is well worth it.

A set of criteria must be met in order to gain Superhost status. These measures include:

  1. Have at least 10 booked guest trips OR successfully complete 3 long-term reservations that total at least 100 nights
  2. Maintain a 80% five-star review rate
  3. Maintain a 90% response rate or higher
  4. Zero cancellations, except for situations that fall under Airbnb's Extenuating Circumstances policy
  5. Maintain an overall 4.8/5 rating

For more information on specifics, click here

HostingHack 2 - Snoop The Scoop

Consider the listing price for similar properties. Price is an integral part of any filter. Be careful not to set an excessively high or low price. The basic premise is that it must be exactly right! Do a little research and be competitive compared to similar vacation rentals in your area, and also take note of travel trends and seasonality when adjusting your listing price. Learn about the market before you write your listing in order not to confuse potential guests.

Pro tip: If your price matches Airbnb price tips, it will rank higher. Moreover, enabling 'Smart Pricing' will provide an additional ranking boost.

Bonus Tip: Monitor your competition’s occupancy levels by heading to their listing page, and click their calendar, and you can see all the dates they are booked. Check how you rank, how does your ranking stack up against your competition? To check your ranking on Airbnb click here.

HostingHack 3 - Robust Response Time

Before making a reservation, guests may wish to confirm some details. While a delayed response could cause the guest to give up and book another place instead, a prompt response will keep them interested. Provide guests with as much detail as possible when answering their questions.

*Tip: In order to streamline and respond in a timely manner you can set your communication on autopilot by switching to “Automated messagingOR Hire a Virtual Assistant.

This way, you will be sure not to overlook any details and most importantly your guests will be well taken care of and you won't lose any potential business!

HostingHack 4 - Seize The Details

Write an amazing Airbnb listing description! Airbnb provides you with many text boxes, checklists, etc during your listing creation to encourage you to add detailed descriptions for every aspect of your property to provide guests with as much information as possible prior to booking. Be accurate and stay true to the facts and reality of your property.

*Tip: Re-visit your Airbnb dashboard and scrutinize each section of your listing with a fine-tooth comb. Ensure that each and every section is populated with detailed, thoughtful descriptions. *

Do this well, and you should begin to see a positive boost of your rankings!

Consider adding details inside the property to your listing and paying attention to how you can improve it to help boost your Airbnb listing;

  • Get a sofa bed - You don't want to lose a booking because there aren't enough beds, so consider providing an extra bed.
  • Focus on cleanliness. Guests care most about this.
  • Decorate your space with interesting art, furniture, and bedding. This adds a bit of a personal touch and adds to the atmosphere.

A little detail is all it takes to improve a guest's experience - and that translates to outstanding reviews for you!

HostingHack 5 - Explain Your Space Eloquently

Impress your guests with words. Make sure your Airbnb listing title highlights what makes your vacation rental unique and convenient. It is the first thing your guests will see, so make it as interesting and creative as possible. Rather than focusing on generic terms emphasize your unit's unique aspects and conveniences.

Tip: On sites such as Airbnb, searchers or potential guests are highly visual. A brief overview is usually what they prefer. Short & sweet!

Further on in your listing don't forget to showcase all the wonderful amenities you offer and how you can make your guests' stay more comfortable. Any little thing a guest sees can show you care, as the little things make a big difference.

  • Mention Amenities you offer such as Speedy Wi-Fi, Snacks, Coffee/Tea, hairdryers, linens, towels, toiletries, etc.
  • Give guests a map of the surrounding area, or provide a list of popular destinations.
  • Offering Home-cooked meals can be a bonus !

You should keep these things in mind when you are writing about your property.

  1. Identify your audience and engage them. Business travelers? Families?
  2. Make your title ‘pop’ off the page!
  3. You want it to be concise but not generic
  4. The photos you upload should perfectly complement the description
  5. Organize your description so that it is easy to understand
  6. Avoid using vague words such as 'great', 'nice' or 'lovely'
  7. You need to be creative to catch people's attention
  8. Don't oversell your space

HostingHack 6 - Take Photographs That "Pop"

The Thumbnail photo you select for your property needs to “pop” and grab attention. This becomes your key photo and needs to be top-notch quality! This photo can either make or break your business. Clicks are generated by grabbing eyeballs hungry to see more of your Airbnb! In the next set of photos, guests should become enchanted by your property, wishing they were there. Keeping in mind, your Airbnb photos showcase everything your rental has to offer in the best possible light and play a critical role in a guest's booking decision, so you'll want to know how to take exemplary shots.

Tip: If you want users to add your property to their wish list, offer well-staged photography of your property. As you are selected more often, you score higher in overall rankings!

Learn how to take stand out photos for your Airbnb to maximize your bookings and rankings by clicking here.

HostingHack 7 - Rave Reviews

Rave reviews According to BrightLocal, “almost 9 out of 10 consumers consult online reviews to help with their decision on whether to use a local business or not.” In addition to that information, it was also discovered that out of the 88% of customers who consult online reviews, “49% said they read reviews occasionally and 39% said they do so regularly.”

Your Airbnb ranking can be improved by having positive reviews. You absolutely need these positive reviews! so make sure you communicate with your guests professionally and in a timely manner, provide clean accommodations and awesome amenities, offer a great price and ask your guests to leave a review as soon as they depart.

You will get reviews based on these factors:

  1. Accuracy: How well did the photos and description depict the actual space?
  2. Cleanliness: Did the cleanliness match expectations?
  3. Check-in: How smooth was the check-in process
  4. Communication: How responsive and accessible was the host?
  5. Location: How appealing is the neighborhood (safety, convenience, desirability)?
  6. Value: How would you rate the value of the listing?

Why Hosts Need Good Reviews On Airbnb:

  1. Reviews are essential to rank high in the Airbnb community
  2. Reviews guide guests in making good travel decisions that will lead to you attracting guests you hope to have in the future.
  3. Ratings help to build a sense of trust, accountability, credibility for both host and guest. So it’s a win-win situation.

Each review helps your property gain ranking and Airbnb data suggests that a higher number of positive reviews is correlated with higher earnings.

Quick Tip: Ask your friends who are on Airbnb to leave a review. Despite not staying with you, they can still attest to your authenticity. Don't forget to return the favor.

Read more on How to Ask Airbnb Guests for 5 Stars here.

HostingHack 8 - Spur On Social Media

Running an Airbnb property is a competitive endeavor, where you’ll need to put in extra effort to beat thousands of properties in your vicinity. One way to gain an advantage and market your business is to use different social media platforms. Hosts bringing guests onto Airbnb via social media platforms are rumored to benefit from Airbnb's SEO boosting.

We suggest you talk about your listing and promote it regularly on all social media networks to enhance its visibility. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter are great ways to showcase your property and garner interest in it. Not only is this free publicity but it boosts your SEO so that your property is more likely to appear higher in search rankings and gain more bookings, more so on Google and Airbnb searches. As soon as you link your Airbnb account to your business profiles on social media, you will see a significant increase in traffic to your Airbnb listing.

You can learn more about how social media can work for you with your Airbnb by reading our blog posts on Using Social Media to Market your Airbnb and how to use Pinterest for your Vacation Rental Business.

HostingHack 9- Check In - Check Out

Check-in and check-out times can be a fragile topic between a host and guest. No matter your guests' reason for traveling, business or pleasure, the processes should be seamless. As people travel around the clock 24/7, you must make sure your check-in and check-out times are reasonable, but also flexible. Being flexible with your check-in and check-out times can be the deciding factor. It may make all the difference even being flexible by just 3 hours!

It could be as simple as having an early flight and arriving a few hours prior to check-in, or a train that departs a few hours after check-out. With these kinds of situations, it is easy to be flexible but it’s the flexibility in those unexpected situations which makes guests smile. A satisfied guest means a good review, so you have plenty of reason to smile as a host as well!

Tip: If you are a remote host consider investing in self-check-in options, such as a keyless lock (particularly important during COVID times), or consider hiring a local co-host for help!

Time and again, surprise your guests with unexpected late check-in and check-out times! You are bound to gain some extra love on those reviews!

For further reading on these topics click on these links: Top 5 Airbnb Smart Technologies for Vacation Rentals and The Airbnb Cohosting Guide.

HostingHack 10 - Under-Promise - Over-Deliver

You can truly "wow" your guests during their stay by going above and beyond their expectations. Your top priority is making your guests comfortable - just as it should be for the host of a vacation rental! A great stay with you will most likely turn into a rave review and a recommendation for your vacation rental.

Get creative if you want your guests to have the time of their lives. We've provided some tips below to help you get started.

  1. (If your place has challenges or quirky characteristics, be clear about them upfront so that people know what to expect) People are happiest when you manage their expectations. Eg: Steep stairs that’s a bit tedious to climb, a bustling neighborhood in the mornings might not be ideal for guests who like to sleep in!
  2. Welcome guests at the door when time permits. Welcome them with a drink, ask them how their trip was - be accessible to their needs when they arrive, maybe even offer to carry their bags to their room
  3. Leave a bottle of wine in the room upon arrival with a welcome note. It will certainly make them smile.
  4. Stock your pantry with Individually wrapped snacks and mini drinks -- varying sodas, a few bottles of sparkling water, juice boxes, or other long-lasting drinks — the investment will pay off tenfold in your reviews.
  5. Leave your guests with all of the supplies they need & more. Be sure to leave extras of everything, too. (Eg : Toiletries, Shower cap, Razor, Toothbrush)
  6. Consider inviting your guests to dinner if you live on-site (if the vibe is right)
  7. Offer Cleaning services and let them opt for simple services like making the beds or washing dishes.
  8. Make available cosy blankets by the fireplace, books to read, or fun games to play indoors
  9. Offer local tour guides or complimentary discount vouchers at a local restaurant
  10. Upon checkout, send a thank you note or wish them well on their journey. Being a gracious host will make you seem more caring

*Pro Tip: Consider delivering extra services not listed - and go the extra mile to make your guest feel welcome and at home. *

Why Use A Channel Manager For Your Airbnb?

Airbnb listing optimization is best accomplished with a channel manager. You will be able to automatically sync your calendars, bookings, and rates across multiple listing sites into one centralized dashboard. That's right - you can control everything from a single location. Why not try and build system solutions to any potential problems to ensure positive reviews for the long-term?

Schedule a demo call at your preferred time with one of our product experts to receive actionable advice and discover how Hostaway can fit your property management business & unlock growth potentials for you.

One For The Road,

“A Little TLC will go a long way” - one last bonus tip before we close this discussion - according to “secret sources” It’s suggested that if you log in frequently or rather daily and spend some time on Airbnb you can boost the ranking of your listing. Also, being active on Airbnb's community forums and getting thumbs-ups should cause the algorithm to like you more. (How cool is that, right?)

Tip: We suggest you get the mobile app so you have access on the go!

We consider these tips crucial for hosts of Airbnb accommodations. Even though it may seem like there is a lot to digest, if you set your sights on each point one after another, you'll soon be on the road to Airbnb success. As soon as you create that perfect Airrbnb property listing, you'll see the bookings flooding in, which you'll be rewarded for in the long run!

Ready to find out how Hostaway can transform your business?