Improvements and changes to Airbnb
Written by Jonny Gordon Thursday, 30 April 2015 11:34
When we first started working with Airbnb we experienced a low level of bookings, but as interest and awareness has grown, Airbnb is becoming a more integral part of our overall marketing strategy.
The company has received over $794 million in funding to date, and has over 500,000 listings in 33,000 cities and 192 countries. Their appeal is still very much geared towards spare rooms, and budget places to stay, but their marketing/PR buzz and international recognition is certainly something we can benefit from in order to achieve bookings for you.
As part of Airbnb’s continued appeal, we’ve been working hard to improve your listings, including:
- A general review of the appearance of all listings, ensuring property photography is key selling points are highlighted
- As additional space has been provided for property information, we’ve gone through all our listings to ensure any missing information has now been provided
- Availability management continues to be a time-consuming job, and so we’re using technology to reduce the strain, which frees our team up to be more productive (e.g. helping guests book, encouraging new bookings, etc.)
- Response rate to enquiries and booking requests is an important factor with regards to ranking, and so we’re monitoring this closely and looking for ways to improve this on an ongoing basis
- We’re constantly reviewing rates and we’ve made some changes to the way bookings are accepted and recorded in our system to ensure we are able to accept almost all bookings based on price (allowing for the fixed fee charged to us, and the variable fee charged to guests)
- Guest reviews and feedback play a critical role, and so we’ve introduced ways to increase the positive feedback we receive via Airbnb, which benefits all listings within our account
- We’ve updated all the property names to match our own website, which is something we are doing across all channels to ensure guests can book direct if they choose to, but also so that it’s easy for them to investigate their chosen apartment via Google (i.e. to check authenticity, look for additional guest feedback, etc.)
- We’re currently reviewing the instant booking option, introduced by Airbnb a short while back, with a view to using this as another way to increase bookings.
Much of this work is on-going, but it’s ensuring that we capitalise on Airbnb as an important marketing channel for Reserve as a business, and for you as a property owner.