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How a Simple Excel Spreadsheet Saved us from Chaos!


#21

Hi Jon,

That looks like a comprehensive excel work! well done!

It appears that airbnb hosts spent lots of time interacting with guests (booking, welcome, post stay, solicit review, etc). Imagine hosts with multiple properties, always on the go while still need to provide timely response to guests.

We baked up a simple mobile app: The essential feature is to send emails (welcome, thank you and solicit review). The tool takes only a few minutes to setup (using AirBnB property and user id)

Perhaps we can help to implement some of your Excel spreadsheet for you at no cost in a mobile app that further simplify your work, leveraging mobile functionality (on the go, guest interaction, tracking, multiple properties management, multiple rooms, pricing, earning, etc)

Our current app is fairly simple and it’sin beta. We would love to get your feedback on how to make the app more useful to hosts like yourself. iOS only for now (search Appstore for Superhost by BonGEO, Inc)

Thanks in advance,
Frank (my email: frank at bongeo dot com)


#22

Hi Frank,

I’m Android only so unfortunately I wouldn’t be able to see your app.

Of course you’re welcome to implement any of the ideas from my Excel spreadsheet… they’re certainly not copyrighted or proprietary in any way!

When you get an Android version done, let us know.

One thing I’ll say though and I have no idea how other hosts feel about this, but soliciting reviews is about the last thing in the world we would ever want to do! The ONLY time we review someone is when we feel very confident that they’ll leave a good review in return. If we don’t have full confidence in that, the last thing in the world we want to do is anything to prompt them to leave a review. But, I could see an email function not being a bad idea for those people who we will review.

The other thing is, and I don’t know if this is part of what you’re doing with your app - but we find there are only a very few situations where we can use a canned message. And even in those situations, we have to edit them about half the time.

The one situation where a canned message works well is the “thank you” email we send after a guest makes a reservation. But, it only works 100% if the guest didn’t ask any questions or say anything in their message that we might want to respond to. So you can see the situations where a full canned message works 100% of the time become very narrow.

The rest of the time we start with our canned “thank you” message and then have to add something to it to respond specifically to something they’ve said.


#23

Off topic: I adopted this strategy a few months ago, instead of simply writing a review to every guest as they left. My ratings have improved. I had far too many fours.


#24

Yes, that’s exactly what happened to us! I used to leave a review for every single guest. And we were at 78% 5 stars overall. Then I realized, why am I writing reviews for guest who I either have no idea what kind of review they’ll leave, or there’s a chance they might leave a bad review.

So now, the only time I initiate a review, is when I know absolutely (as much as I can) that they’ll leave a great review. And now we’re up to 84% 5 stars overall. It’s the difference between Superhost and not Superhost. I don’t know if being superhost helps you get more reservations, but it can’t hurt. So we’ll take it if we can get it.


#25

I said this somewhere else recently, in all likelihood, a guest is likely to review you right away either if they really liked it or really hated it. Perhaps the lukewarms are happy to let it go, unless a host ends up writing their review in which case, there is a trigger to write back one.


#26

Hi JonYork,

Thanks for your reply.

We has a task on our product roadmap to develop an Android version. Our plan is to beta test on iOS and then build on additional platform.

We focuses on mobile app development so we aim to provide utility to superheats while they are on the move (away from desktop)

In the pursuit to build a truly useful mobile app for superhosts, perhaps we could take a step back and start anew:

If you have the liberty to design or build a mobile (or that we will develop one to suite your needs), what are the top 3 features you would like to have?

Or if you have you seen any mobile app that you like, or like to add on more, we are all ears. Feel free to send me hand-drawn sketch if applicable.

Regards
Frank


#27

Where can i download your spreadsheet. Cannot seem to find it available??? Help please


#28

Hi @Carrie_Barrie, try this. I think if you right click on it and select Save As you should be able to get it. Let me know if not.

Oops! Sorry - that doesn’t work. I’ll figure out another way you can download it and update this message in a few minutes.

EDIT: Okay, try this link. I have no idea if it will work - so let me know!


#29

RE: not asking for reviews from guests unless confident they will leave 5 star review----- I do something similar, either leave no review at all, or if I really want to leave them a bad one I’ll wait until the 14th day when the review period expires, so they likely won’t leave one if prompted to by airbnb, or even be able to leave one for that matter.

However I usually end up not leaving one at all. I’m incredibly generous, and usually give 5s all the time. and hint to guests I will be doing so and that I would really appreciate if they would do the same for me—because I try so hard to be the best host I can be and meet all their needs blah blah blah. and that anything but a 5 star overall stay review will hurt me—so I then simply ask them to send me private feedback if they weren’t happy with suggestions on what I need to improve—and to please NOT leave A REview. This has worked really well actually!

My question is, if you don’t review them at all, they can still review you right? they just are not prompted to do so? BAsically you just get a small advantage that they’ll forget or be too lazy to write a review.—am I mistaken??? If we hosts don’t review them, do their reviews not count against our overall 5-star rating metrics/show up on our reviews?! IF that’s true (which I don’t think it is—pretty sure if we don’t review them, their review will just show up after the 14 day period----- however usually it gets buried by a few good more recent stay reviews (big help if their review was negative) and decreases chance of prospective guests actually reading it. That’s my understanding of how it works… Am I right or wrong here?


#30

@Rory_Taylor - The only difference between your writing a review and not writing one, is that the guest does not get the prompt “Your host has given you a review. Write one now to see what they wrote!” unless you write a review.

We have a guest that left a few days ago that promised to write a review for us. If she doesn’t write her review by Monday, I’ll write one first and AirBnB will remind her to write her review


#31

We do something similar. We send out an automated message the afternoon before they leave, telling them what to do if they’d like to leave their bags here and pick them up later. Then at the end of that, we say:

"Also, if you have any suggestions for us on how we could have made your stay better, please reply to this message and let us know. "

I thought that would give them a good opening to express themselves to us privately and would lessen their felt need to do so in a review. However, over the two years we’ve been using that - not one single guest has ever responded to it and given us a complaint. Yet many have left 4 star reviews and voiced various complaints in public! Really pisses me off.

We also use smartbnb which sends out the automated messages at a designated time. That works great. We even forget the messages are going out and are always surprised when the guests know exactly what to do!

But another cool thing with @smartbnb.io is that you can write your reviews on their platform and schedule when they’ll go out. If you want to leave a bad review for somebody or even if you want to leave a good review, but you’re afraid they might leave you a bad one - you write the reivew on smartbnb and click Bad Review.

By clicking Bad Review, it means smartbnb will post it literally… just a few seconds before the time to review expires!!!

That has been so awesome and come in so handy for us so many times. It allows us to write bad reviews without accidentally prompting guests to write us one too before the time expires. They have no time at all.


#32

Wow! I am new to airbnb as a host. In fact, I am currently entertaining my first guest and I find this suggestion of yours, an Excel spreadsheet, invaluable!

I have the one guest in the house and one on the way. So glad I caught this suggestion in my beginnings!

Thanks!


#33

You’re welcome! I hope it helps. You’ll find the busier you get and especially if you have more than one room/property - it will come in a lot more handy.


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