Hosting is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world as you are opening your home up to people from around the globe.
Bringing different cultures and communities into your space is a very personal and heart-warming experience for many hosts, but it does bring with it its own challenges.
The reality is, is that it’s getting tough out there.
More and more homeowners are turning to Airbnb as a way to supplement their income or earn some extra cash. If you add to the mix the fact that more short-term letting management agents are involving themselves in the process, with all the experience they bring, then competition is getting only more fierce.
In maximizing your Airbnb bookings, the best way to stand out and become a superhost is to offer an exceptional level of service that only you can provide because it’s your home with its own quirks and personality.
If you can emphasize the value you are bringing to their stay then they are more likely to give you the good reviews you deserve, which in turn should drive more guests to want to experience what you have to offer.
The following tips should help you identify where and how you can add value to your guests overall experience so pay close attention.
Always remember that first impressions count.
Research shows that guests will make an assumption about their whole stay within the first 30 seconds of entering the property. Therefore, you want that first impression to be a resoundingly positive, one to set them up for the rest of their stay.
To get that wow factor, try implementing one or more of the recommendations outlined below.
Provide a Welcome Basket
Much like you may see in a hotel, a welcome basket invites the guest to a free pack of goodies prepared specifically for them. This warm act of generosity will go a long way to welcoming the guest into their new surroundings and showing them that you care about their experience.
You can even go one step further and tailor your welcome basket to your surroundings; for example, local delicacies are a great addition to showcase the area.
Provide an Information Pamphlet
A lot of guests that will be staying at your property may be new to the area. Be a useful host and provide all the key information they would need on a small pamphlet that they can keep and carry.
This information provided should help them be able to contact you easily in case of emergencies and any other key property information they need to be aware of including accessing keys, lock-box instructions and so on.
Go One Step Further
Along with the information pamphlet you want to go one step further and add your take on all the best local eateries and bars in the area.
Segment your information into different activities that you feel the host will want to experience. Making your guest’s life easier is one of the simplest ways to get them on side.
Furthermore, its also useful to detail local travel options and how they may best get around. For example, If your property is in a secluded area, how would they access public transit? Is a taxi service the only option?
One cannot overstate the importance of a clean and tidy house. Not only does it invite the guest to feel more relaxed and at home in their new surroundings, but it also acts as a buffer for when your guest is making their initial impressions.
Leaving smalls tokens of appreciation like a few cold drinks or snacks dotted around the house will only serve you better as it will increase their levels of satisfaction as they will view you as a highly accommodating host.
Furthermore, you want to factor in the time of day or night that the guest is arriving. A hot drink with a note for a night arrival adds a personal touch.
The discerning guest will not be happy if you do not at a minimum, provide basic sanitary needs and kitchen utensils.
Preparing clean towels, toiletries, and dishware shows you are a professional host that doesn’t skimp on the essentials.
Softening up your décor with cool interior furnishings is also another housekeeping obligation that guests will readily expect. A wall with no pictures, or a sofa with no cushions, hardly says ‘relax and put your feet up’.
The Hotel Experience
Always remember one thing: Your guest wants to get good value for money. That’s why they have chosen to stay at an Airbnb listing.
If you can give your guest hotel-like treatment at a competitive value-packed price, they will scream your name from the rooftops upon exit.
And in all honesty, that is the ultimate goal here. Driving awareness of your listing through positive word of mouth is more cost effective and valuable than all the marketing you could pay for in the world.
This is because you have built trust with your guests and exceeded their initial expectations. Do this enough times and you are 10x more likely to make a success of your Airbnb listing in the long run.