10 steps to communicate your way to a 5 star review on Airbnb

Female using app on smart phone.Sitting in the cafe.
Getting high reviews is essential to any host. Since this will let you increase your occupancy rate and allow you to charge more for your accommodation. With these 10 steps you can communicate your way to a five star review. A mobile PMS like Roombler will help you to always stay on top of your communication and let you have all of your information close to hand. (These steps can pretty much apply to any booking process, however some are more Airbnb specific.)

The inquiry process

You need to be a great communicator during the inquiry process. Potential guests will appreciate a prompt, thoughtful response to their inquiries. Always respond to all inquiries as quickly as possible, even if you are politely declining a booking request. On Airbnb your listings will publicly display your “Response rate” and if it’s not 100%, you’re leaving a bad impression from the get-go. “Response time” is also important so try to respond within an hour, whenever possible.

The booking process

You will get one of two initial inquiry types from potential guests: a booking request or a simple inquiry. At this point, you have the option to approve the booking request,or pre-approve the request, if it is an inquiry, or reply with further questions. Read through the inquiry for potential conflicts and take a look at the user’s profile. If you’re ready to say yes, approve the request immediately, and be sure to answer any questions in your response. This gives the potential guest 24 hours to respond, which they’re more likely to do if you’ve responded quickly. Keep in mind that they’re probably contacting other hosts in your area, too, and if they hear back from someone else first, they could book with them instead!

Pre visit conversation

After a booking is complete, send a welcome email to your guest and make sure all of their questions have been answered. Encourage them to reach out to you for any questions or concerns that may come up. As the check-in date approaches, reach out again with clear directions to your property and also check if your guest has any last-minute questions. You can also include some suggestions on activities and a couple of restaurants to visit during their stay.

Check in

Make sure your guest has proper directions to your place and a reliable way to contact you if they get lost. If they’re traveling internationally, your guest may not have an easy way to call you if something comes up, so give them several options if you can (calling collect from a pay-phone, or Airbnb app message or Skype, if they can find public Internet access). Once they’ve arrived, provide a brief tour of the space and ask your guests if they have any questions or need anything. But don’t stay to long and hover, allow them some time to settle in on their own.

Deliver everything as promised

Review your listing yourself to ensure you haven’t missed anything. If you’re unable to provide something you’ve said you would, let the guest know immediately and do your best to fix it if possible. A seaview is not a seaview if you need a mirror to look at it.

Offer suggestions of things to do

Even if your guest is traveling for school or work, they’ll probably be looking for things to do for entertainment, too. Place a guidebook, map, etc. in the room/apartment/house, or get creative and make your own list. You can provide suggestions on your Airbnb listing, too, by pinning your recommendations to an interactive map surrounding your listing. If you can, offer suggestions based on what you know of your guest from their profile and from talking to them.

Check in on your guest

You’ll have varying levels of interaction with your guest, depending on what type of listing you’re offering, how long your guest is staying, and how busy you and your guests are. Regardless, check in on occasion to make sure your guests are comfortable and have everything they need.

Offer that little extra something

It doesn’t have to be big but here are some things you can do to go that extra mile. We promise that it will pay off.
  • Offer to pick them up from the airport.
  • Offer to be their guide for a day or a couple of hours.
  • Offer advice on restaurants and what to eat. Help them to book a table.
  • Put some fresh flowers in the room for your guest’s arrival.
  • Place water bottles and some snacks in the room.

Address issues promptly

Things will go wrong. And that’s okay. Should an issue arise (WiFi outage, etc.) just be sure to address the matter promptly. Most guests will be understanding.

Review your guests

Usually the day after your guest’s stay has ended, Airbnb will email you and ask you to review your guest. Do this right away! Your guest will also get an email from Airbnb reminding them to review their stay, and if they quickly receive another email that notifies them that you’ve completed your review of them. It will give them a boost to get theirs done sooner.

Bonus step

Keep in touch with your guest and let them know about happenings in your town and special offers. This will strengthen your relation with the guest and increase your re-visiting rate. By saving information about your guest in your Roombler PMS app you can easy remember details about their stay.