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Acceptance Rate Affecting Search Results


Sorry if this has been covered before, but I could not find anything on it here. According to AirBnB:

"Accepting more reservations and raising your acceptance rate can improve your listing’s search placement. "

Am i the only one who finds this a little odd? The way I interpret this is that the rate of declining requests varies indirectly with your listing’s prominence in search results. Since the search tool is all about promotion, then doesn’t it hurt promotion of your listing if you decline a lot of inquiries?

Here’s why this is bugging me: part of the awesomeness of the whole home stay phenomenon is that you can screen your potential guests before agreeing to host them. I don’t want psychos in my home, so if I ever get a weird feeling about someone, then I should be able to deny them a booking, right? Right. But, if I do this a lot, then it starts to reduce the probability with which potentially awesome guests can find my listing. So, in other words, pickier hosts are featured less prominently in search results.

Am I overthinking this? Let me know if anyone has a different perspective. THANKS!


LOL! I hear you. I’ve turned down quite a few since starting this only a few weeks ago, but I still get a lot of reservations, so I am probably stressing about nothing. I’d rather have a so-so search placement and only have high quality guests than have a kick ass search placement and end up with some freaks in my house, It’s all about perspective, right?


Jack, declining should not affect your search rating. I think they word it nebulously to make you think it does.

I know you didn’t ask this, but I think you are missing a lot of income by turning down guests. I guess I don’t screen as carefully as some people here. Once I got an odd feeling about someone who said he was on a “dharma quest” and I thought about turning him down. He and his wife turned out to be my best guests ever and have invited me numerous times to stay with them in Norway. So unless they have a horrible review, I pretty much take anyone, and I get a lot of newbies. Those who just filled out a profile yesterday. I just ask them, (if they are new to Air), I’d like them to carefully read through my Guest doc.

Most of the guests booking with me are from the Mainland (or another island, but rarely) and so are 1. Spending a lot of money to get here; and 2. Planning their trip to Hawaii carefully. So in theory I should mainly get good, guests who want to spend a majority of their time sightseeing and not hanging around the rental. Also… they are on a mission to see Hawaii and not here to crash or party or cause trouble. In 98% of the cases this is true. In all this time, I only had one idiot partying guest. The others are just people who didn’t follow the house rules very well but were not worthy of a police call like the above mentioned idiot (Jennifer H from Portland, never rent to her!)

I feel the only way to build yourself up in search is to host a lot of completed trips.


No matter what you really cannot tell for sure about people until they actually show up! Sometimes the quiet ones are your best guests, while the ones who ask a lot of questions are the worst. You probably won’t get psychos but you could get slobs or idiots. Just part of the Air hosting game. No way to really tell until you meet them… And even then, I have learned the nice ones can turn on you in a review. You won’t be able to control every aspect of booking. Just take a few and learn from each one. Have set house rules so they know what you expect!


Thanks! Really great insights.


i’ve declined more requests than I’ve accepted (38/32), mostly from a week when I was out of town – I only wanted to rent to someone with multiple good reviews and who wanted a 4+ day booking and who overlapped with my departure day. It didn’t seem to impact my placement very much – if I plug in dates, I’m still on bottom of page 1 out of 3 pages. If I don’t plug in dates, I show up at around pg 6 of 17 pages.


Good to Know. I admit I haven’t been very systematic about monitoring my placement in searches. And even though I have declined a lot it seems to have paid off as I’ve had consistently amazing guests who have given me perfect scores, I am still getting plenty of bookings. Of course I live in Hollywood in a coveted location, so that really helps!

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