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Contemplating small adjustments to my listing

So, I’ve been doing this for a few months now: my listing. There is a reasonable amount of activity, but I’m not making much money. Still, I’m continuing to make small adjustments in the upward direction.

Currently, I’m charging Rs 1950 (approx USD 29) for one person, Rs 1950+400=2350 (approx USD 35) for two people. Cleaning fee of Rs 470 (approx USD 7). I have no restrictions on length of stay.

So, this works out to Rs 2350 + 470 = 2820 for a single night for two people. Minus the 3% fee, this is approximately Rs 2735.

I’m thinking of:

  1. Moving up the single person rate from 1950 to 2100. I originally had a flat rate of 2300, but then changed the single person rate to 1950 on the assumption that more people would see a rate that was under Rs 2000. I don’t actually know if this is true. Does anyone have any idea? Regardless, I can’t stay under Rs 2000 forever. India’s inflation rate is quite high.

I think it makes sense to have a difference between the one person and two person rate, even if a small one.

  1. Increasing the minimum stay to 2 nights. In addition to the usual overhead, I have a form C to fill in for foreigners. (Most of my guests are foreigners.) This is quite the paperwork burden. Also, they might be breaking up possibilities for longer stays. In July I had two guests here for one night. And I have two more this month. I read one comment saying that excluding 1 night stays affected search. Has anyone noticed anything like that?

I’d quite like to charge extra for early check ins / late checkouts, especially when people do both in a single stay. But I don’t see any reasonable way of doing so. Airbnb doesn’t have any support for that.

Thoughts?

I can’t say much about your rates, except to suggest that you compare them to other AirBnB as well as other lodgings in your city.

In my opinion, one guest makes just as much work for you as two guests, so why would you charge less for one? As an American, if I were coming there, 29USD is dirt cheap. I would expect to see two rate scales – one for locals/nationals, and another for Europeans. I’ve certainly seen that all over Asia.

I agree and @faheem’s place is fantastic. I’d consider ‘perceived value’. If something seems to be cheap then the consumer’s first though is ‘what’s wrong with it?’

We are all aspirational and are all affected by prices that we see. Why is a ‘designer’ handbag better than a much cheaper one? It’s human nature to consider, when something is cheap, that it’s inferior. What counts is value for money.

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What is your neighborhood like? Is it considered desirable? Is it a central place tourists would want to be?

I looked at Mumbai hotels on Orbitz. Your place does seem a little low in comparison, then again I’m not familiar with the neighborhoods, so it’s hard to gauge.

I would look at Airbnbs that are comparable to yours and then aim to be in the middle of the pack when it comes to price.

Regarding your Rs 2000 “psychological price” limit, keep in mind that guests will see prices in the currency of their home country, so I don’t think it matters. I used to keep my price under €150 until I realized that most of my guests aren’t paying in euros anyway.

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Ah, that’s a very good point. It hadn’t occurred to me. I guess Indians would be the only ones who would see the Rs 2000, and for whatever reason, they’re in the minority of bookings currently.

For Americans reading this, would a USD 30 price represent any kind of psychological barrier?

I don’t think it’s make a barrier.

Regarding the price, it’s depend what is your competition and hotels doing in the area.

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Hi @KenH,

It’s difficult to compare with other Airbnbs, but my impression is that my prices are roughly in line with others. Though rooms here can go for a very cheap nightly rate. I’ve seen quite reasonable rooms in Bombay for close to Rs. 1000 (USD 15). Though they typically don’t include A/C at that price. But in the West you couldn’t get much of anything at that price.

An example of competition would be this lady. Airbnb always puts her below my listing. :frowning: She’s very popular - I think she has the number one position for the city. But then again, she has IB as well as a flexible cancellation policy. Exactly what Airbnb wants to see. And as you can see, her price is similar to mine. She’s in the Bandra/Kurla area. This isn’t very close to me (it’s not South Bombay), but I think it’s generally considered to be a good neighborhood. Bandra (or parts of it) are where rich people live. But location-wise my place might be better, at least if you want to do tourist type things in South Bombay.

I haven’t systematically looked at listings close to mine. Perhaps I should.

Well, there is not much difference, but two people use more of everything, on average make more noise, and on average make more mess to clean up. Though I grant you that I’ve not noticed much difference in practice.

I don’t understand. Airbnb doesn’t have support for two pay scales. And I can’t imagine prospective guests being happy about this if they found out either.

Yes, it’s fairly centrally located. It’s close to a railway station (Marine Lines), it’s roughly equidistant from two major hospitals. (I was hoping for some medical tourism, but that hasn’t happened.) It’s close to some of the major (wholesale) market/shopping in South Bombay. And it’s close to some of the tourist areas like the Gateway of India, though I’m not sure how much tourists care about that. And people keep telling me what a good location it is.

I don’t think my competition is hotels. It’s the local Airbnbs and other B&Bs. Though Airbnb definitely dominates. But yes, the hotels in the area are more expensive. I don’t think you can get anything reasonable for under Rs 2000, and I don’t think at that price they’d be very nice rooms, either.

I think that’s roughly where I am. There’s a little room to increase, but not much. It’s a big city; there’s plenty of competition.

She has many dates with an higher price.

The most important is how much you are booked. If you are full booked time to raise price. You can always lower the price for some days before a date if you are not booked.

She does? Yes, I see actually clicking at her calendar, she’s got prices going up to 2800. Then the listed price is quite misleading. Hmm, is she using Smart Pricing or whatever Airbnb is calling it, then?

I’m not fully booked. If you look at August, you’ll see quite a few gaps. Maybe 2/3rd booked. But there’s certainly room for more advertising at my end.

For me I got it working at higher price with other platforms and some advertising.

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Yes, I think there is a little room to move up. Having said that, this is just a little room. It isn’t Shangri La.

I’ve just increased my prices slightly, to Rs 2100 for one person, and Rs 2100 + 350 = 2450 for two people. I tried to set my extra person fee to Rs 250 but Airbnb wouldn’t let me - the system said it was too low. For the moment I haven’t increased the minimum length of stay - it’s still one night. But maybe the price increase will discourage people from booking for one night. (With the cleaning fee, it’s now around Rs 3100 for one night, and that’s just what I’m charging. Airbnb adds stuff on the top.) We’ll see.

Why not offering as extra a nice indian breakfast?. In this case I am sure you can get someone to do the work and It can attract some tourists that was a typical breakfast/maybe some others meals?

Breakfast is already included. And I think a couple of people have also mentioned it in the reviews. It’s mentioned in the description:

Breakfast is included if you want it. It can be served at 10 am or later.

Is that sufficiently clear?

I also offer meals, but that isn’t included in the price. Though I’ve thought of including meals as well. The cost increase would probably not be significant.

Faheem said “I don’t understand. Airbnb doesn’t have support for two pay scales. And I can’t imagine prospective guests being happy about this if they found
out either.”

Set a higher price, then make Special Offers to guests from local places for lower prices. No one has to know. You can use the same thing for your “one guest, two guests” price difference. If it’s one person inquiring/booking, make them a Special Offer of a lower price.

Why not asking some guests if meals will be something that can be good extra

Sorry for the breakfast, Your link didn’t worked when I checked

Interesting idea. Does anyone else do this kind of thing? The only thing is, if the price is too high, people may not bother to inquire about a lower rate.

I’m not sure what you mean. I already mention meals in my guide. But most don’t seem interested. If I was to include it in the cost of the room, I’m sure a lot of people would eat here.

Yes, https://towerroom.net doesn’t seem to work, at least right now. Try http://towerroom.net instead. Sorry about that.

In Florida during the slow season lots of hotels and attractions have a reduced rate for Florida residents. Create a page for the special on your site and social-media it to smithereens :slight_smile:

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