Stories of successful Airbnb super hosts are aplenty and while short-term rentals can definitely be profitable, not all hosts manage to do this due to several reasons. Airbnb hosting is certainly rewarding. However, it comes with a few hurdles that require a good level of knowledge to successfully deal with. Here are some things worth remembering when strategising for the right approach.
Details, details, details are ever more important
Premium expensive furniture isn’t necessarily a must, but creative and nice little touches could go a long way. Photography and visuals are very important parts of guest booking decisions. Photos featuring a piece of art or a sofa that adds a pop of colour in the room will thus help your listing stand out. Invest in a few but interesting pieces instead and you will see more bookings coming your way.
Fresh photos go a long way
Photos are tricky to get right especially if you’re going to need professional looking ones that you’ll use for marketing purposes. It has to look good because guests, yet again, judge your property by its photos. Airbnb actually did an internal study on this and found that listings with professional-level photographs earn 40% more revenue than those without.
What constitutes a great photo? A Carnegie-Mellon University study dove even deeper. The study identified 12 separate parameters of Airbnb listing photos that could be optimised like brightness, composition, and image clarity. Each parameter was assessed in terms of how many extra nights of booking might be gained from optimisation.
The results were remarkable. They found out that 72% of the half-million photos analysed were characterised as “low-quality” and more importantly, if all 12 parameters were optimised, it could lead to an extra 60+ nights per year of potential bookings.
Keeping your photos in good quality and updated is a must because it brings in revenue. Updated photos also set the expectations of the guests and meeting those expectations is the best way to avoid low ratings.
Your best features do the selling
Does your property have a roof deck or a garden in the backyard? If so, it might be best to make sure you mention them in your listing. Guests are understandably interested in what the bedroom and baths look like but getting your property noticed means highlighting features that other listings may not necessarily have.
Don’t overlook simple features just because you think they’re ordinary. 59% of US guests, 46% of Australian guests and 39% of Italian guests place more value in air conditioning over wi-fi, while guests from the same countries US and Australia, not to mention Canadians, tend to value free parking over a pool.
Highlighting that you have these is especially true when looking for an edge during the different seasons. If it’s summer, for example, emphasising that a grill is available in the yard can be attractive to potential guests, while an elegant fireplace would best be featured during winter months.
Solid pricing leads to solid yields
What exactly is the correct rate for your property? How can you be sure that it’s optimal and would get the place rented out most days? It can be tricky but one way to gauge how you should set your nightly rate is to look at similar properties within the area to get a ballpark figure.
It doesn’t end there, however, because dynamic pricing is key to maximising your efforts. For example, some hosts charge more during weekends than they do on weekdays. Rates can also be increased if there’s an upcoming event within the area or reduced when no one is booking in the less busy weeks. Having a good pricing strategy prepared is one vital key in becoming a success in the short-term rental market.
As of 2020, there are 2.9 million hosts on Airbnb and an estimated 14,000 new hosts join every month. With numbers like this, the short-term rental space is still going strong and we continue to see its rise year after year.
If you want to get personalised assessment and recommendations, feel free to schedule a call with one of our property consultants here.