I have had 12 guests stay and all 12 leave reviews that are overall positive. Some have given 3 and 4 stars though for value. Any tips to increase my star rating in this category? Our airbnb is a full house with 4 bedrooms where 10 guests can stay in a great location. We updated everything within the home to have a comfortable homey feel for our guests. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
What can you do in terms of adding low cost amenities to improve the perceived value?
Have you asked the guests or have they left feedback on WHY they downgraded the value? IF you can get them to answer, that would be your best information on what to improve, if you can.
There are many low cost things that you can do. Just stay in the place yourself for a few days and see what you think would make the stay special. It’s unlikely that you’ll have to spend money doing so. Think about the thoughtful little touches that you’ve missed. Ask yourself, are you preparing the place as you would if it was your close family or your favourite friends coming to stay?
It’s a house but what amenities do you offer? Coffee? Hot tub? Baked goods? Close to a beach? Not much info given here…
I too have a whole house rental. I wanted to make sure I got good reviews when I started last summer so I left tooth paste and brushes in the bathrooms, cookies in a cookie jar on the kitchen counter and small bottles of water on the night stands. I also left them a gift of a nice bag of coffee and small box of chocolates. This summer I’m cutting back since I already have several nice reviews. This summer I’m only leaving a small fruit basket on the kitchen island. Try leaving them some treats. I also leave a card that says “Welcome to the Jersey Shore”. It doesn’t have to be expensive.
We offer a whole-house rental, too, and get knocked down in value from time to time. We offer free amenities out the ears - toothbrushes, toothpaste, razors, combs, sunscreen, happy hour drinks and food and dinner the first night, breakfast the first morning, snorkel gear use - the list goes on and on. Oh, and full-time staff.
But we aren’t a “value” home. I think some people just equate value with cheap (which we are not) when they rate us. They booked at our price and rave about their stay and want to come back, but then mark us down for value. I’ve learned to ignore it.
Have a non-close friend stay there and tell you what they think. You need honesty from someone not afraid to offend you. We don’t see things as they are, but as we are. That’s even more true with real estate - you gotta get another set of eyes on the space to let you know what stinks.
For my own, I’m constantly trying to put myself in the guests’ shoes, imagine what I’d want in the space, and post shared photo albums to friends with good interior design sense to get a feel for what they like / don’t like about the space and furnishings. It’s ridiculously hard to be objective once you’ve got sunk costs and effort.
Get another set of eyes on the space.
I wouldn’t worry about it unless it’s negatively affecting your occupancy rate.
In my view “value” just means “price compared to alternatives”. If you are getting a 3 or 4 for value but otherwise 5s then then you are maximising your return. You can provide some freebies but if you are solidly bookend why would you? I get 5s for value but if I increase my price I find I don’t get bookings People pick me because I am cheaper than holiday areas 30km away then go “wow what a great place and so cheap!” and give me a 5 for Value. But they probably wouldn’t have come if it was more expensive.
@PitonView. i am a little bit like PitonView as mainly in the high season many hosts make the most of money and there is no way i am going to downgrade myself for a good value stars. Guests who want value they can go to Motel or cheap rental. Guests sometimes want it all, safe and nice neighbourhood spotless apartment and furniture but cheap price. Things add up professional cleaners, good quality linen and all fancy Flat Smart TV, someone needs to pay for them after all. And forgot about electricity cost, how many guests turn off the heater or air cond when they leave the apartments?
You can’t increase value without either:
- Lowering your price
- Investing money without rising price
@kzim2182 - Since you are renting out a large entire home, you might want to consider using Vrbo/Homeaway, too. We get almost 90% of our rentals from them, and at higher prices than AirBnB. Compared to Vrbo/HA, AirBnB “shoppers” seem to be looking for cheap places.
Increase your rate to weed out the bargain hunters.
Value is very subjective. It probably means something a little different to everyone. When we started we had a hard copy questionnaire asking for input on some specific things with a few open ended questions. We made a few improvements based on the answers. It is sometimes surprising what does or does not impress people. Sometimes things people don’t like are clearly in the listing and cannot be changed. Take a few 4s without too much angst.
Do you mind sharing if you got any less-than-obvious suggestions and whether you incorporated them? Or anything suggested that falls into the “you wish you could, but” category?
Raise your rates.
ImWelcome baskets. Personalized cards with guests names on it. Themed wall art in line with the intentional, themed look and feel of the space I am trying to build.
Anyone can rent a room.
STRs sell an experience.
For this reason, value to me is always, “how can I help make this space incomparable to any thing else on my market?”
Start with your competition, then make it different and better in a way that you’ve seen in the best stays you’ve had yourself.
from what I’ve read over the years, you can bend over backwards and give them free stuff galore, but at some point it could bite you on the arsebuttocks.
- Kettle plus instant coffee sachets and milk pods (collected from your last hotel stay), Guest says “ooh just like a hotel!” 5 stars
- Kettle plus instant coffee sachets, coffee machine with 5 types of bean to choose from, fresh milk, croissants, loaf of bread, butter, toaster, 2 types of jam. Guest says, “ooh, what have we got here, oh, no marmalade, no de-caff, and it doesn’t say whether the milk is full fat of semi” 4 stars.
Those are definitely not guest recommendations I would incorporate. I am in ths STR business, not the greeting card business.