I would have never dreamed of doing this! Today I took the plunge and tried asking my guests for a 5 star review if they enjoyed their stay. This idea came to mind after I’ve seen this done by hosts I had stayed with in the past as well as a recommendation from Richard, a YouTuber (his channel is called Short Term Rental Secrets).
The guests immediately sent me feedback about some minor things I could improve via an AirBnb message and said they would be happy to write me a 5 star review since they liked the space very much.
Am I beeing too forward? What do you think?
I never ask directly, but I do drop hints in my pre check in message and the check out message by saying that I hope they have/had a 5 star experience.
So in the pre check in, I say something along the lines of, If there is anything you need just let me know, we want you to have a 5 star experience.
And then again at check out, I write something like, we hope you enjoyed your stay and had a 5 star experience.
I feel that some guests can’t differentiate between hotel 5 stars and airbnb 5 stars sometimes. So I like to add the word experience to get them to separate from a hotel star system.
I really like this wording!
I’ve been experimenting with messaging guests at checkout that we enjoyed having them and plan to give (or have already given them) a 5 star review and hope they enjoyed their stay, too- but it makes me uncomfortable. I like the idea of priming them even before they walk in the door.
Never, ever, ever would I ask! (Mind you, I get 5 stars anyway -smug grin-). To me, it’s too much like begging. I want guests to leave me five stars certainly, but not because I prompted them.
I like your approach Adnie, thank you for sharing this!
I would NEVER ask (beg) for a 5-star review! Like @jaquo, I get lots of them anyway, from the way we treat our guests.
The good thing about this was the feedback the guest gave you which they probably would not have given you any other way. Sooo is it more… Can you provide feedback to improve your experience than can you give me 5 stars…
This is an interesting discussion since I have never asked for a 5 star review but I have asked for a review especially on VRBO and HomeAway since guests on that platform only can review if I request a review I believe. I have sometimes requested a review from Airbnb guests if it is close to the cutoff time and I believe they shall give me a good review. Usually what I say is something like this “We really enjoyed your visit and I know reviews are requested for lots of things these days but as you were probably influenced by the reviews for our River House would you help other visitors to our home know what you really liked? This will help our small business as well.” This has never failed me and I have 71+ 5 star reviews on Airbnb.
I have never and will never attempt to direct a review in any way with one exception. If I do a special favor for a guest whom I really like (drive them to the airport, bake them a cake, etc.), I ask them not to mention it in the review. I want my guests’ honest assessment of their stay with me. I had a guest who told me that a previous host had asked her not to mention that the listing was infested with cockroaches. How would you like to be the next guest at that listing?
We just bought a mattress. The salesperson offered us two free bamboo pillows with a list price of $60.00 if we would each write a five star review on Yelp and/or Google reviews. I declined. My husband wrote two reviews. I asked him if he felt like he needed a shower afterward.
I won’t either as I said above. If guests want to give me a five star review, that’s wonderful. But if a host asked me for a five star review it would set me off thinking - was it really five star? Could things be improved? What exactly was not quite perfect? And, most important, why are they so desperate for a five star review? To make up for lesser ones?
I’d rather guests left our place with memories of me thanking for their stay, my cheery smile and adding that I hope they have a great journey home. That’s more effective than any sort of ‘begging’.
I’m completely transparent with guests and tell them the truth: that airbnb considers anything less than five stars overall to be poor (it’s true, just get two 4’s in a row and watch for the admonishments via email) and so if there is anything that would prevent one from rating us 5* overall, to please let me know so we can correct it immediately. Haven’t gotten anything less than 5* overall since (knock wood). Have heard a couple things to improve/change/fix which we did immediately. All positive outcomes for everyone!
I also would never ask a guest to write a 5-star review in person. I’m quite happy with my quota anyways.
But I face the problem that 30% of my guests don’t write a review at all.
So I started to write a mail to former guests some days after check-out.
hope you returned home safely [or had fun at place Y]. It was a pleasure hosting you. [insert something personal]. Hope to see you again.
Afterwards I write my review.
Since then I got 90% reviews and 99% 5-stars
Earlier this year after a nightmare guest I was forced to grovel for five star reviews to try to plaster over the bad one I received from a totally bratty entitled little b… may she never darken the door of anyone here… unless you like refunding and recleaning for a minor tropical bug issue and getting slammed in a review anyway.
If I get the sense they loved their stay, I simply say, usually by text…
“Wow, thanks for leaving the apartment in such great shape! I will leave you five stars and love for you to do the same. I’m only a couple 5-star reviews away from making superhost. If you want to come back, keep my direct contact info and avoid deposit and fees.”
Mind you, desperate times call for desperate measures and this pathetic ask has actually been working pretty darn well. But I am not now, nor have I ever been, a superhost!
Interesting that this topic is here because this is exactly what I was searching for when I came to the forum today. When I was doing my pre-launch research I read a few blogs and articles that suggested asking for a 5 star review, so I have a section in my house manual and a line in my pre-checkout note that I send. I’ve had 9 guests and 9 reviews so it’s working I guess. Not all the reviews are 5 stars, although all the recent ones are I believe. My informal research done by asking friends who use airbnb alot is that they don’t have a problem with the host asking in an unobtrusive way.
Don’t do it before they arrive though. That would come across as obnoxious. Wait until they leave, and if they were good guests, then ask. Otherwise it will surely backfire on you!
Here’s the wording I use. 100 percent 5-star reviews so far:
As you probably know, we airbnb hosts live and die by 5-star reviews. I hope you will consider a positive review for your stay. You are most welcome to return anytime and send your friends!
I really like asking this, but surprised that you would do this. Just wondering if you get any feedback from asking guests to keep your direct contact info? Has anyone booked with you again directly?
I think a creative idea is to use your WiFi password as an opportunity to advertise yourself. I am about to launch my airbnb and plan on my password being 5starsplease! or something along those lines
I could never bring up the review issue. It’s just not my style/personality. It would make me feel like I was putting people on the spot. I think most of us here would do just fine not doing so because we offer a good product that’s going to survive regardless of reviews.