How to Attract Your First Airbnb Guest

How to Attract Your First Airbnb Guest
May 6, 2019

Securing your first booking is one of the major steps in Airbnb hosting. Before you are equipped with numerous five-star reviews and recommendations, you will need to make the initial leap to appeal to people based on your listing on its own. Your first few bookings will set the tone for your career as an Airbnb host so it’s important to ensure that your hosting duties are given as much attention as is required. The faster you are able to earn great reviews, the faster it will be before you are inundated with requests to stay at your property.

Some hosts may find a little bit of difficulty in getting that first booking locked in. For this reason, preparation is important as it will help you to attract eyes to your listing and entice potential guests to book a stay with you. There are a number of ways in which new hosts can make this first leap in hosting easier. These steps will allow hosts to start out strong with straightforward, positive and profitable first experiences using the Airbnb platform.

Here’s how new Airbnb hosts can attract their first guests:

Get Your Pricing Right

Pricing is a crucial aspect of your Airbnb listing and it’s important to get right from the get-go to ensure that your time spent on your efforts is worth it. While you don’t want to set your nightly-rate as too low when you’re first starting out, some leniency may be required in the beginning to help you stand out amongst other seasoned hosts. As you may be going up against hosts with numerous five-star reviews and the Superhost status, you will need to work out a way to get guests to choose you over them. In some cases, this will require you to get very competitive with pricing.

Competitive nightly-rates are a new host’s biggest advantage when they’re in the early stages of hosting. You can also consider offering discounts for certain times of the year and for long-term guests as well. This is a great way of appealing to a niche market and securing your first few bookings.

Identify Your Preferred Guest

Figuring out whom you’re most trying to appeal to can be a great asset for all Airbnb hosts. Once you’ve figured out who it is you want to attract on the platform, you can really tailor your listing and advertising efforts towards them. Most commonly, hosts will choose to try to attract business travellers, families, single travellers and backpackers. Each of these types of travellers comes with their own unique requirements and approach. Once you know who your preferred guest is, you can go further in attracting them through concentrated efforts.

Just because you’ve identified a group of travellers that you would like to target initially doesn’t mean your focus will need to stay on them for the entirety of your Airbnb efforts. As you become more experienced as a host, you can switch up the way you do things at any time. Identifying a preferred guest is merely a way of ensuring that you’re doing all you can to appeal to a person so that as soon as they see your listing they’ll be attracted to it immediately.

Optimise Your Listing

Optimising your Airbnb listing increases the likelihood of it be shown in the top few positions in search pages, increasing the likelihood guests will click on it and boost booking rates substantially overall. For this reason, taking all the necessary steps to ensure you’re optimising your listing in the very beginning is a key component of starting out on Airbnb. There are a number of tasks required to ensure a fully optimised listing, these include:

  • Completing your host profile
  • Getting verified
  • Having competitive pricing
  • Displaying great photos of your property
  • Enabling ‘'Instant Book'’

Take Attractive Photos

Your photos are one of the most important parts about your listing. If you aren’t properly showing off your property, there’s not going to be much chance that people will decide to stay with you. Airbnb is a very visual platform, so it’s important to really showcase what’s on offer for the guest through well-taken images. As mentioned, photos will also go a long way towards deciding how your listing is promoted by Airbnb in the search results pages.

Here are the best ways to take attractive photos of your Airbnb listing:

Consider Using 'Instant Book'

  • Use a high-quality camera
  • Take landscape photos
  • Keep things as brightly lit as possible
  • Make sure the property is tidy and presented well
  • Sell the experience of staying with you
  • Highlight unique aspects your property may have
  • Add many photos to really capture your property’s experience
  • Showcase the photos in order of appeal - best is shown first

Many hosts are often wary of using 'Instant Book' on their listing. While it does restrict how much you are able to vet your guests before you accept them, it is a really useful tool while you are first starting out as Airbnb prioritises 'Instant Book' listings in search result pages, showing them to guests over those that require acceptance. Guests are also more likely to book with you if you have this feature enabled.

While 'Instant Book' does come with its precautions, it can be a really useful tool at the beginning of your hosting journey. Hosts looking to attract their first booking as fast as possible should consider turning on 'Instant Book' to attract guests promptly.

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