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Please help me review my new underperforming listings

Hi,

I have been hosting for about a year now with quite some success with my two apartments. Last week I have added two brand new renovated apartments that I have prepared specially for Airbnb hosting. Unfortunately, I am getting no inquiries which I find weird since it is still peak season in Prague and the apartments are located really close to the Prague Castle - one of the Prague’s main tourist attractions.

I have been wondering about the reasons for this and I have stumbled upon this very nice community of hosts while doing my research. Maybe I am missing something important here, could you please review my listing(s) and tell me what might be wrong?


Thank you very much!

I think they are beautiful apartments, well priced and I would book them right now if I were going to Prague. (I love Prague, a gorgeous city!) Without analyzing the neighborhood and competing listings my guess is that the competition is exploding. There are no doubt 100’s of apartments in s Prague and if I were looking I would only be looking at apartments with reviews, probably only with superhosts and only instant book so I didn’t have to wait for replies. It is hard to click on dozens of profiles and decide, especially if you are making last minute plans. Maybe you could put in your listing near the top that you have 68 reviews for other listings? If I knew you were a good host, but it was just a new property that would convince me. Maybe if someone contacts you about your older listings you could get them to book a newer listing so you can build up those reviews.

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Also, while it may still be tourist season, people may have their lodgings settled already for this year. I like the idea of having people contacting you for your established locations consider your new ones. That may be your best bet for now. And maybe you’ll have Air contact you with last minute bookings from people who have last minute changes from a lousy location (read some other threads, ugh).

I think your spaces are beautiful and experienced Air users will be able to see that even though they’re new listings that you are an experienced host with many reviews. I think it’s just a timing thing.

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Is there anyway you could mention your other listings and the positive reviews you have? That might reassure people that you are a realiable host.

Personally, I wouldn’t book with a host with no reviews for an international trip. I might for a trip that was within a couple of hours of my home.

Both places look great. The only pictures I thought could use a little work are the bedrooms. If you could make the beds a little more neatly and make them look more appealing somehow, but that’s really just a small detail.

I see you have nice coffee machines. If you offered free coffee pods and put some good quality teas out, plus sugar etc and showed that all in a close-up photo…

It’s one of those irrational things that makes me more likely to book. I can’t explain it, because obviously coffee is relatively cheap to buy myself in comparison to the whole price of the room, but it’s something I always find appealing in Airbnb listings.

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Re: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/14607284
While the apartment looks spotless and is elegantly decorated I would have an issue with the large bed and no space on either side to get in and out. Don’t know what you can do about it though. It would be very claustrophobic to me and I envision climbing down to the end to go to the bathroom at night. I would book only for 2 and use the pull out sofa to sleep. Also, just in general put the toilet lid down when taking a photo of the bathroom.
Same comments on your other listing. Lovely apt! Otherwise.

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I had the same thoughts about the bed. In my space in able to offer a queen bed I have to stick in in a corner. Thankfully it’s not too much of a problem, but I can’t imagine having to always climb up from the foot of the bed.

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I would have no problem if at least one side has space! I don’t even understand how they make the bed lol. Older guests would be turned off I think?

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Maybe put new in the title for both New to airbnb… and repeat it on the first line of description as it is. .

I would have a major issue with the beds, I would not stay there because of the beds to be honest. As you get older it can be harder to move around and you need time in the morning to stretch out, basically people have to crawl down the bed to get out. An older person that may need to use the toilet during the night they basically has to crawl over their partner to get out and crawl back up again.
Although I am not old I have rheumatoid arthritis and that bed would kill me. I think you have to make your space suitable and accessible to all ages and I think your beds would put people off even though the rest of the place is so lovely. Can you move rooms around ?

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Sadly, I agree with the above comments. I say sadly because many aspects of the apartments are beautiful - the gorgeous wooden floors and beams, lovely bathrooms, thoughtfully chosen rugs and furniture.

So I’d be looking at the photos and getting excited … beautiful apartment, great location … oh, whoops - the bed! And I’d sadly pass on to looking for somewhere else.

Is there nothing that can be done? I suppose the room isn’t wide enough to turn the bed around? Would two single beds at an angle be better? I think you could even do better renting it as a studio with a very comfortable sofa bed.

A small thing about the photos: although the decor is very good and the furniture clearly good quality (and we have exactly the same colour Eames dining chairs!) it just looks a little bit soulless to me. I very much like minimalism, but I do think your walls need a bit of art to make them more charming - maybe some photos of old Prague (in large frames). Also, those gorgeous rugs need to have the colours picked out somewhere else. Don’t forget that women have the main influence in choosing the accomodation, and what do we like? We like cushions! A few cushions on the sofa in two of the colours from the rug would look fantastic.

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I found “NEW Prague Castle Apartment with Gorgeous View!” on the first page when I searched for Prague but didn’t find the second one (gave up after page 10). Looks like a lot of competition! But, lovely apartments. Absolutely say upfront in both the short and detailed descriptions to check out your other listings with reviews. Even though I am not that old, I had a knee replaced in December so the wall-to-wall bed(s) would not work for me, either. Are the sofa beds comfortable? Do you have black-out shades for the living rooms? If I were a family traveling to Prague, I would put the kids in the bedroom and sleep in the living room, if the sofa beds were comfortable and I could make the room dark. Best of luck!

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I think since they are new listings remove the minimum 2 nights stay and lower your prices, even though they appear reasonable, until you get some great reviews then you can start tweaking your prices and minimum stays. Most of my bookings are for 1 night and while I wish people booked for longer many won’t, or don’t.

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I agree with others, you should add some cushions, curtains, throws, to warm up your decor.

That being said, I think that there is not a lot of people booking their holidays right now, as they are on holiday or just came back, so it’s somewhat expected that listings in “destinations” do not get a lot of attention at the moment. I think we will start to see more activity from early September.

Do your listings get many views and do they get wishlisted ?

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I thought of something else.

You could do a guidebook. I’ve found that other things being equal, I’m more likely to pick a listing where the host has done a nice guidebook. I think it shows they know their neighborhood well and care about hosting.

Same as others have said: lovely apartments, yes the bed needs some work on one, it is the end of the season, and yes stating it is new and even referring guests to your other established listings is indeed a wonderful idea.

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Love the listing and have them on my wishlist since I am planng a vacation. I do have to say that as I am 56 I don’t want to climb into a bed from the bottom and crawl but I personally would do so for a night or two.

Agree. We are entering the slower season, before we get to the absolute dead season in Jan here in Barcelona. Maybe other Euro hosts can chime in? @Malagachica I think may be even more seasonal.

I wouldn’t have a problem with the bed but I think the price may be on the high side compared to your competition. You definitely need to lively up the walls. It’seems a bit stark to me. Also the chairs seem a bit… Well, not inviting!

There are lots of really nice looking places for under $40, so you might lower the price a bit. You could be on the high side at $59.

Prague is on my list but I would be a January visitor! I like traveling when everywhere (but Hawaii) is dead! I enjoy a cold weather getaway!

Since I know nothing about the city except that it is old and beautiful, I would personally be looking for a place with old world charm and character and one that’s centrally located so I could walk to pubs and cafes. As well as be near a subway so I could see attractions and get to the airport easily.

That’s just me, hope it helps!

You have no reviews for these listings. That is what’s wrong. People who are browsing hundreds of listings, probably on their phone, will pass it over in favor of places with review stars.
Lower your price (or maybe get a friend to stay) to get two or three reviews and you’ll probably do a lot better.

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Tips…

  1. Reorder the photos. Jumping from living room to bedroom back to living room, outside and back to living room does not show flow of apartment to guests.
  2. $59 a night PLUS $39 for cleaning fee is too high with no reviews.
  3. Remove king bed and put in a queen. And bed should be higher off the floor; older guests might have trouble getting out of a low platform bed.
  4. Kitchen has no oven/stove visual and no pots and pans. How is a guest supposed to eat?
  5. YOUR first words in the listing refer to “live here”. Instead of “stay here” or “visit here”; guests might think you are looking for long term tenants and not wanting 1 or 2 night requests.
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Hello FJE

Okay. To me the big problem you have is a lot of competition. Simple as that. Actually, I just spent the past 10 minutes and I couldn’t even find you even though I put in a few filters, dates etc. So what to do?

First up. When I search for an AirBnB for my own use, I prefer to use a place with lots of glowing reviews and ideally a superhost. (Purely because it means they have a positive track record and when there is an oversupply of choices, why not go for the best). This doesn’t help you at all as you don’t have superhost status or glowing reviews - yet!!!

Secondly. I look at the first photo. To be honest, your main photo is not inspiring. It is dull! I want more than a shot of a lounge room. If I am going to Prague, I don’t particularly want a brand new apartment. I want atmosphere and to feel as if I am experiencing what the town is like rather than a modern apartment.

Third. The photo I feel should be your main photo is number 15: “Apartment from the outside”. Much more appealing than a shot of a dining table and lounge. Number 15 straight away tells me it is a nice old building in a popular area. Would even be better with a description saying exactly which it is in the street. Maybe a shot of you leaning out the window or something - then you could say “Hey this is my apartment and thats me leaning out the window”. Not exactly but I am sure you get my point.

And the rest of your photos - sorry, but unappealing. You are up against some tough competition. You need to offer something a bit different than normal accommodation. Show more of what is in the immediate area of where you are. Tourists will want to spend time looking around. Not spending all their time in your apartment. May be a shot of the local coffee shop or bar?

On a typical search page for a place in Prague, there are 18 photos to choose from. Out of the page I am looking at, 16 are pictures of beds, dining rooms, a set of chairs, two windows. Only two are of the outside showing how charming the building is. The rest could be ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD! BORING!!!

I went straight to the two that look like they are in the historic part of Prague.

Fourth. Try opening it up for single nights booking. I know it is not great but this will at least eliminate some of your competition. I have only had my place listed for 4-5 months and offer single nights. Don’t like doing it but I need lots of reviews. My price is half of what I want but reviews first to work my way up the AirBnB ladder.

Sorry I can’t be much more helpful but you have to consider the reality of supply and demand. Think differently and stand out from the rest. As others have stated, it is the end of the season thus the huge choice available to guests.

I am in our off season and have few bookings. Disheartening of course, but looking forward to the busier season when I can take advantage of my few but positive reviews.

P.S I love Prague!

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