How to Deal with a Bad Airbnb Host Review

How to Deal with a Bad Airbnb Host Review
Airbnb Advice
August 1, 2018

A bad review can be some hosts’ worst nightmare. Imagine investing hours of time and money into creating a great experience for your guests only to have them leave you negative feedback once their stay is over. For many, the natural response is to get defensive. To argue your point or to dismiss the guest as a bad egg can be tempting. However, there’s a way to handle bad reviews that can actually benefit your Airbnb in the long run, if you are in the unfortunate circumstances of it happening.It’s important to note that a bad review is something you want to avoid at all costs. Reviews and ratings really are the driving force behind host profiles so, it’s essential to do all you can to provide the best experience possible for your guests, to be transparent and to keep lines of communication clear and open. Realistically though, we do live in an imperfect world. Mistakes can happen, especially if you are handling your Airbnb listing all on your own. If you do end up receiving a bad Airbnb host review, it is possible to handle it in such a way that it doesn’t break your efforts completely. Here’s how hosts should deal with a negative review:

Tackle the Issue Head On, as Quick as You Can

The quicker you’re able to respond to a guest, the better. It’s important that you respond to any concerns the person may have had and to clear up any disagreements. Addressing the problem in a timely matter can help you improve your listing, show the guest that you care about their experience and hopefully rectify any mistakes that were made.

Respond to Everyone and Keep it Professional

Remember that the reviews on your profile are public for everyone to see and will most likely be assessed before anyone requests to stay with you. It’s crucial to keep your responses constructive and positive. Your response to a negative review is the ideal time to publicly apologise for any inconvenience caused, you can also offer to make amends.

Address Issues that You’ve Fixed or Improvements You’ve Made Since

During your response to the review, publicly address the issue and outline what you’ve done to make sure it won’t happen again. Talk about your listing moving forward and how you’ve taken the constructive criticism onboard to improve future guests’ experiences.

Learn From the Experience and Use it to Improve Your Service

It’s easy to stay positive when everything is going right, the true test of a successful Airbnb host is being able to deal with the lows as well as you deal with the highs. Airbnb hosting is a process and does take practice. Take feedback on and improve your service - in some cases, a negative review can actually be a good thing if it helps you better a mediocre guest experience.

Contact Airbnb if Your Guest’s Review Breaks the Rules

While there may be situations outside of your control that lead to bad feedback, in most situations guests are understanding and thoughtful about the reviews they leave. Airbnb is a fair platform, they reserve the right to remove reviews that break their terms of service. According to their rules, while you can’t get a review deleted just because you don’t like it, you’re able to put it forward for consideration if you believe it violates certain conditions. Reviews that aren’t about a guest’s own experience, reviews to get a discount and reviews extorted by threat or manipulation are all strictly banned by Airbnb. This means that if your guest was motivated to leave a bad review in the hope of receiving a refund, you’re able to contest it. These situations are extremely rare. Users of Airbnb are almost always respectful of the process and understanding of the importance of genuine reviews to the platform. However, if you’re ever in the unfortunate situation of this occurring, keep in mind that you are able to contact Airbnb directly.

Avoiding Bad Reviews While Hosting on Airbnb

The most ideal situation on Airbnb is to not receive any bad reviews at all. Reviews are permanent and they generally do make a huge difference to the enquiries you’ll get as a host. Working hard to offer your guests the best experience possible is key to succeeding on the platform. Here are some effective ways to make sure you get positive reviews as an Airbnb host:

  • Take the time to vet guests before approving them to stay at your property.
  • Don’t exaggerate or lie about any features your property has. If guests turn up to your place with something in mind and get another thing altogether, you’re bound to hear about it.
  • Keep promises to a minimum with your listing, exceed expectations and delight with what your property actually offers.
  • Make sure you always clean your property to a really high standard between every guest and before each guest arrives.
  • Guarantee there are no hitches with arrival or departure times with strong communication.
  • Continue to keep in touch with guests during their stay (where appropriate). Make it clear that you’re easily contactable if they have any issues while they’re staying at your property.
  • Go the extra mile to make their stay great with guides or gifts.

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