If you’re a host on Airbnb.com, and are having difficulties monetizing your efforts, you’ve come to the right place. Though listing on Airbnb is a great way to make money, the way you’ve chosen to list your property, and what you’re offering to potential guests might not have been done in the best way possible. That’s where we come in! If you want to be an Airbnb Superhost, and make more money on Airbnb, then check out what we’re going to teach you about in this article:
- Tips for becoming a better Airbnb host
- Thing to keep around your home to go the extra mile for guests
- The 7 things guests most care about – and how to nail them!
After reading a few short Airbnb hosting tips, you’ll be earning more money in no time and avoid these Airbnb hosting nightmare stories!
11 tips for becoming an all-star Airbnb host
1. Go out of your way to provide hotel-like service.
People like staying in Airbnbs because it feels more like home – but that doesn’t mean they don’t want the convenience of hotel-like services. This means providing things like towels, dishes, coffee makers, closets and dressers, desks, and so on. Though people want a more “homey” feel, they still want to make sure they have everything they need for their stay.
2. Provide as much information as possible.
Answer all possible questions a renter would have – this is key. The person interested in your place has a right to know everything they can about where they are staying, so make sure you take the time to write a detailed description. If you didn’t do this when you started, don’t worry. You can change these details at any time.
You should also remember that the time it takes you to respond to questions is recorded on the Airbnb website, so the faster you respond to inquiries about your place, the better. But it’s not all about speed; you should make sure to answer each question you are asked, thoughtfully. The better you answer questions, the more likely an interested person is to become a person who actually books with you.
3. Show off what makes you unique.
If you have something in your home that is unique, special, abnormal, or different than what you would find in most homes, not only should you mention it, but you should make sure to feature it in the description of your home. Write about this unique aspect, and make sure you include a picture of it. It’s possible that this will help someone choose you, over someone else who has essentially the same basic offering, but without the added fun of whatever it is that makes you unique.
4. Make keeping your calendar up-to-date a priority.
Avoiding cancellations is one of the best ways to keep your rating on Airbnb high. Most high-rated Airbnb hosts have their calendars set in stone at least 6 months in advance to avoid cancelling on people who book with you. Make sure you block out dates as soon as you think you are busy (you can always open them up again later). It’s better to have something blocked out and later set it to available than it is to have someone book, and then cancel their reservation. You’re sure to get negative feedback for doing that.
5. Keep your place immaculate.
If you want people to give good reviews, make sure you place is neurotically clean. You wouldn’t want to sleep in a place that was dusty, dirty, or had loose personal items strewn about – and neither does anyone else. People can easily (and are likely to) take pictures of a mess in your home and post them for others to see, so make sure you’re on top of your cleaning. Though you may keep your place generally clean, you will want to do a good clean a few hours before the new guests check in.
6. Make your guests feel at home.
Your place isn’t an actual hotel, and as we mentioned above, people often pay Airbnb hosts rather than a hotel because they like to feel at home. One of the best ways to get good ratings is to make your guests feel like they are in their own home, while on vacation. Help provide them with things that make memories, and help them feel comfortable; many of the things in our list of things to keep around the house (below) will help you accomplish this. It also might make them more likely to share a feel-good story about your Airbnb like these ones.
7. Get verified.
Airbnb offers multiple ways to verify your identity, and we would recommend that you do this. By uploading an image of your driver’s license or passport, you can advertise that your identity is verified, which means potential guests will know you are not using Airbnb to run a phishing scam. In addition, if you verify, you can make it a requirement that guests can only contact you if they have also verified their identity with Airbnb.
8. Take professional-grade photos.
If you want to get more people interested in your place, and book with you faster, take a professional-looking photo of each of your rooms. Stand in the corners to get the best viewpoint of a room, take pictures with good, natural lighting, and make sure you show off every unique aspect of your home – especially the spaces that look the best. Have everything tidy and staged to look its absolute best.
9. Do more than what you promise in your listing.
It’s important to live up to what you promise to do in the description of your place, because your guest is expecting you to provide them with everything you said you would. A great way to get top-shelf ratings is to do even more than what you promised! When people give 5-star ratings, it’s always because where they went exceeded their expectations. If you can do that with a small gesture, or by providing some of the extras we’ve listed below, then you’re on your way to making more money on Airbnb by booking more guests.
10. Write reviews of your guests.
It’s important for you to review your guests as well – and try to do it within a few hours of them checking out. This will encourage them to rate you, especially if you give them positive ratings. We’re not saying be dishonest about how good your guests were! But make sure you rate them so they feel inclined to rate you back.
11. Reply to and address any negative comments.
If anyone leave negative comments about you on the Airbnb website, make sure you respond to them – and make sure you respond quickly. There are a few steps you should take to dealing with comments like this:
- Acknowledge their concerns and thank them for their comment
- Offer an explanation for why what they are concerned about happened
- Explain how you will rectify the situation for the future
- Offer them something to make up for the negative experience they had
That should help keep your reputation in tact on Airbnb.
If you’ve already gotten some not so great reviews on Airbnb, you might be thinking it’s time to try listing your home on one of the best Airbnb alternatives. However, we think that if you try to include the following things in your home, your ratings may go up!
Things to keep around your home to go the extra mile as an Airbnb host
These things are all small, inexpensive items that you can keep around your place for new guests. Don’t charge extra for things like these – many people won’t use all of them, but they will appreciate the gesture of having them around for their convenience.
- Extra hand towels for the bathroom and kitchen
- Bottles of water by the bed
- Tupperware, baggies to take things home
- (Dishes are normal to have, but try to think of the little kitchen things people need)
- Cloths and other supplies for cleaning up messes
- Reminders/post important information about safety, electronics, what to do if the power goes out, etc.
- A bottle of wine or some local craft beer
- A bowl of fruit
- Coffee and tea – with a coffee maker and kettle, milk, and sugar
- Stock up with light snacks
- Hair dryers
- Sundries such as new toothbrushes and toothpaste, shaving supplies, soap, etc.
- Extra blankets (in bedrooms and in common living spaces)
- Post a way for the guest to get in touch with you in case of emergency, or if they need anything they can’t find
7 things Airbnb guests care about most
1. A good value
If you aren’t offering your place for a fair price, you can’t expect people to pay for it unless, for some reason, your area is currently in high demand. Try changing the price for your home on your Airbnb account and see what Airbnb suggests for you as an average price in your area. It’s always good to start with an amount like this, and then raise it if you have many people interested, or lower it if your requests for booking are few and far between.
Before booking, a traveller will always read the reviews, and the longer you’re hosting on Airbnb, the more important each review will be to you! Each person that leaves a good review for you is like a stamp of approval for the next potential guest. Read the reviews people leave for you carefully, and use each one to help improve the experience of the next person who comes!
3. Flexibility – especially with check-in times
Remember to think of renting your place as a business, and the person coming to stay is your customer. Would you demand a customer show up at specific times in a small window to get your business? – No. So why should your Airbnb guests have to? If someone is booking with you, it’s likely that they are travelling, so it’s not easy for them to show up at a specific time. The more flexible you can be with check-in and check-out times, the more likely you are to impress your guests, and make their lives much easier (which means better reviews for you).
4. Quick responses
Both before booking, and while your guest is staying in your home, responding to their queries quickly is essential. When people are looking to book, they usually don’t want to wait days to make a decision – so responding within a couple of hours is great, and if you can respond immediately, that is ideal. It’s also a good idea to send an email a week before your guest arrives to remind them of any important information they need before checking in. This will make the guest feel like you are very helpful, and likely lead to more bookings and better ratings.
5. Reliable Wi-Fi
This is essential to any Airbnb home that offers Wi-Fi. Most people want it, and they want it to be reliable and fast. Don’t make it impossible to connect, and advertise what kind of speeds you can offer your guests. People who stayed in your home will criticize you in a review if you advertise “free high-speed Wi-Fi” and they can’t stream a simple episode on Netflix before bed.
6. Easy ways to get in touch with their host
You should provide easy ways for your guest to get in touch with you, both before their stay, and after they check in. Make sure you give them a phone number for emergencies, and an email address for quick questions. If you don’t want to give out your personal email address, start a Gmail account just for communication with your Airbnb guests.
7. Easy ways to access the home
If your explanation of where keys are to gain access to your home, how to open your locks, or how to get into an apartment building is longer than one sentence, it’s too much for your guest. Do not make it more difficult than it needs to be for someone to get in. If it’s too hard to explain, you should be there to bring your guest in the first time. This can make all the difference in the world to someone who is staying in an unfamiliar place!
These tips for being a good Airbnb host will pay out tenfold through positive reviews and potential interested in your place. Over time, you will be able to raise the price of your Airbnb listing as it becomes more in demand. Make sure you check out the rest of our helpful articles on vacation rental websites, and our free course on Airbnb for more helpful tips and suggestions for Airbnb hosts.