Today’s services, no matter the industry, have one main focal point: the customer. Airbnb is no different. A host should focus on not only satisfying Airbnb guests’ needs but exceeding them. And with Airbnb hosts getting creative all throughout the platform, guest expectations have increased.
So what things should a host keep in mind to guarantee happy guests and high Airbnb occupancy rates? It’s always good to place yourself in a guest’s shoes. What would you expect from a vacation rental? Some details, as minuscule as they may seem, can make it or break it for Airbnb guests. Check out our list below!
But before we get to our list, we have a bonus tip/disclaimer for you.
Before Anything: Airbnb Reviews
If you didn’t already know, Airbnb has a review function in which both hosts and guests can talk about their Airbnb experiences. Both guests, as well as hosts, take Airbnb reviews seriously. Reading one bad review can affect a guest’s willingness to stay in a property, and can thus affect your Airbnb occupancy. The way to maintain good Airbnb reviews is simple – keep your guests happy. How? Onto our list!
This one’s made the top of our list since there’s really no thinking twice about it. And while people have different cleanliness standards, no one expects to walk into an Airbnb property and find dishes in the sink, a dirty bathroom, or a few hairs on the bedroom floor/bed. Airbnb guests expect a spotless property. So make sure to hire cleaning services between guests, and to even check the property yourself regularly.
Easy Check-In Procedures
Most Airbnb rentals nowadays have electronic locks and codes for guests. Many Airbnb guests don’t even need to encounter their hosts. And while it can be nice for the guests to meet the Airbnb hosts and vice versa, some find it simply easier to check-in and tend to things on their own. So make use of this technology and install an electronic lock if you haven’t already.
Also, make sure to either pin your property on Google maps or to include clear-cut and easy-to-follow directions to your property. Some hosts even choose to send their guests maps via e-mail, especially if their rental property is not easy to find. The easier you make these procedures for your guest, the happier they’ll be.
Maps, Menus, Touristy Suggestions
So even if you’re an out-of-state investor, make sure to include some sort of guide and/or maps to help your Airbnb guests navigate through the city! You can even make your own customized property guidebook to include your personal favorite hangout spots, restaurants, bars, and tourist hot spots. You can also include a couple of take-out menus from nearby restaurants. There’s nothing a traveler appreciates more than a local’s advice or perspective. And if you’re ever free, you can also suggest showing your guests around town for a couple of hours.
There’s nothing more annoying for a city visitor than attempting to find parking. This is especially important if your property is in a large city. Some Airbnb guests are even more willing to pay extra to have that parking spot.
Airbnb guests may be unfamiliar with the city they’re in, so they may struggle with finding parking close to the Airbnb rental property. So it’s always a bonus if you have available parking. A lot of positive Airbnb reviews also mention parking as a plus.
Another thing Airbnb guests expect to find is clean towels, sheets, an extra blanket, toilet paper, dish soap, sometimes even things like shampoo, and an extra toothbrush. We always say make sure your rental property feels like a home, and part of that is stocking it up with necessary toiletries that guests may need. Imagine going to a short-term rental and not finding something as simple as a soap bar in the bathroom. No guest wants the inconvenience of having to buy things a basic house should have.
Related: Airbnb Rental Calculator: The Ultimate Tool for Airbnb Hosts in 2018
While guests generally don’t spend a lot of time in the rental, it’s nice to have some sources of entertainment. Setting up a TV, placing a few books, and adding some board games can be really appreciated by Airbnb guests in 2019. Also, many guests oftentimes book properties to spend time with friends and/or family, so it would be nice to give them a source of entertainment for their free time together.
Food and Snacks
You don’t have to go all out and stock up your fridge and pantry. But guests will really appreciate finding something to eat, especially if they traveled a long way. You can buy simple items like coffee and tea, instant noodles, a few canned goods, energy bars, and water bottles.
I was once staying in an Airbnb property in Chicago, and it was pouring that day. I was pleasantly surprised to see a few umbrellas in an umbrella stand by the door as I was leaving. This brings us to our next point – I wasn’t necessarily expecting an umbrella at the rental property, but I was definitely happy to find it at my disposal. It seemed like the Airbnb host considered every last detail when furnishing and stocking up the rental, even with these miscellaneous items.
What Airbnb Guests Don’t Expect
Obviously, there are things Airbnb guests don’t expect or don’t want to see in the property. Some of these are irritating sounds from electrical appliances, or even having malfunctioning appliances. Moreover, guests don’t expect to experience any maintenance problems like a clogged sink or malfunctioning shower-head.
So What Should You Take Away From All of This?
Customer expectations are always changing, especially as they (Airbnb guests in our case) are experiencing new properties and trends. With the general Airbnb game getting stronger nationwide, you have to set yourself apart from the competition. So try to meet the above Airbnb guest expectations for 2019, and make sure to devise new methods to surprise and please your guests.
If you want another way to set yourself apart from the competition, check out Mashvisor’s tools for Airbnb investors. Click here to learn more.