A couple days ago Airbnb came out with a new update: The Airbnb 2023 Winter Release.
I highly recommend you check it out so you're aware of the changes.
In this email I'll share what I think are the two most important things you should know.
1. Brian Chesky mentioned that listings that have the most amount of detail get 20% more bookings.
Airbnb has added A TON of options where you can add more details about your property.
Most of this info you can add under Listing Details => Amenities.
It used to be that you could just indicate what you have, things like TV, AC, a dedicated workspace and so forth.
But now, you can add a lot of detail.
For example, you can specific the size of your TV, the brand and what streaming services and devices it's connected to.
You can even specify the brand of your body wash and shampoo.
Now you might think that some of this stuff isn't super relevant or that your guests don't care…
But I highly recommend taking an hour or so to go through all the items listed and add as much detail as possible.
Because some guests DO care what brand coffee machine you have. And what the EXACT WiFi speed is.
In today's market, the details matter, and that's not going to change in the future if you ask me.
Also, I have a suspicion that Airbnb gives these listings a boost in the search rank.
At least for our Freewyld listings, after we added every single tiny little detail possible, all our listings are now on Page 1 of the search results, as you can see below.
Side note: this is a screenshot from Rankbreeze, a tool that helps you optimize your listings and tracks your rankings in the Airbnb search results. Very valuable information to have, I highly recommend checking it out.
2. Airbnb introduced a new badge called Guest Favorite.
If your listing qualifies, this badge will show in the search results, as you can see below.
The two listings on the left are ours.
Black Mountain has the Guest Favorite badge, Coulter Pine doesn't.
As you can see, the Guest Favorite badge has priority over the Superhost badge, which indicates that it's a big deal to Airbnb.
This becomes clear if you do a random search on Airbnb, the first few pages of the search results are dominated by Guest Favorite listings.
So…the Million Dollar question is: How do you get the badge?
As opposed to the Superhost badge, there are no conditions that you can meet that guarantees you get the badge.
Instead, it works like categories. Airbnb decides who gets the badge based on a number of criteria:
– Overall star ratings and feedback in guest reviews
– Category ratings from guests for check-in, cleanliness, accuracy, Host communication, location, and value
– Host cancellation rates
– Quality-related incidents reported to Airbnb customer service
– A minimum of 5 reviews
How exactly they determine this hasn't been disclosed, but Chesky did mention the average rating of a Guest Favorite listing is 4.92.
That tells me that listings below 4.9 probably don't qualify.
On the flipside, having a 4.9+ rating also doesn't guarantee the badge, as you can see in the screenshot I shared above.
Both Black Mountain and Coulter Pine have a 4.94 rating, but only Black Mountain made the cut.
The best thing you can do is to provide outstanding hospitality to your guests. That will lead to high ratings, great reviews, and minimum guest complaints.
Last but not least…
Airbnb also announced a number of other updates, like an AI powered photo tour functionality, smart-lock integration, an updated app and a guest arrival guide.
These are major updates, but they haven't been rolled out yet, and will become available in the next few months.