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EP205: This Week in the World of Airbnb

If you’ve ever used Smart Pricing, you know that the tool tends toward the lowest prices—favoring guests over hosts in order to increase the number of users on the platform and promote Airbnb’s branding as the affordable alternative to hotels. In a recent Airbnb blog post, the company offers insight into the algorithm used to calculate the price for your listing.

Airbnb news is a numbers game this week. Jasper is joined by Glenn Carter, Head of Marketing at Hostfully, to discuss several of the 70 factors that affect Smart Pricing for your listing. They also break down the figures of a new Morgan Stanley study that indicates a slow-down in the growth of Airbnb and a dramatic increase in the number of people concerned about safety and security.

Glenn and Jasper highlight a hotel executive who isn’t out to get Airbnb: CEO Mark Hoplamazian says Hyatt has upped its game because of the home-sharing platform, and he has plans to open 60 new hotels this year.  In other impressive growth numbers, Airbnb co-founder and head of China Operations Nathan Blecharczyk reports a 250% increase in tourists visiting China through the platform in the last 12 months. And perhaps the most impressive statistic making headlines this week? How about the London property manager who made a whopping £12M—about $18M—in a single year through Airbnb? Listen in and learn where hosts earn the highest annual income and what factors impact Airbnb’s Smart Pricing for your listing!

Topics Covered

Article #1: What’s Smart About Smart Pricing?

  • Explains Smart Pricing algorithm
  • 70 factors (e.g.: seasonality, popularity of market, booking history, etc.)
  • Tends toward lowest, favors guests over hosts
  • User growth as priority, branding as affordable alternative to hotels
  • Designed to increase chances you’ll receive booking

Article #2: Airbnb Adoption Growth Has Plateaued, According to Morgan Stanley

  • Attributed to awareness of platform (80% of consumers)
  • Business travel growth didn’t reach expectations
  • Rise in number of people concerned about safety (10% in 2016 to 25% in 2017)
  • Based on survey of 4,000 people in the US and Europe

Article #3: Hyatt CEO Says Airbnb Has Actually Helped the Hotel Giant Grow

  • Characterizes Airbnb as positive disruptor
  • Inspired Hyatt to up its game with personalized guest experiences
  • Opening 60 new hotels this year
  • Much of growth in China

Article #4: Airbnb Feels ‘Unencumbered’ and Is Growing Strongly in China, Its Co-Founder Says

  • China is fastest growing country for Airbnb domestically
  • Chinese spend more on travel than Americans
  • Chinese government favors local competitors
  • Co-founder Nathan Blecharczyk heading up Airbnb’s China Operations

Article #5: World’s Most Successful Airbnb Landlord Earns £12M a Year Renting Out 881 Properties in London

  • Analysis courtesy of AirDNA
  • Top earner is property manager in London ($18M/year)
  • Highest average host income in Bali, Indonesia ($40K/year)
  • 2/3 of hosts ‘regular people’ sharing homes
  • 1/3 are traditional property managers
  • May be used as fodder for hotel lobby

Resources Mentioned

It’s the Ship

Article #1: blog.atairbnb.com/smart-pricing

Article #2: businesstravelnews.com/Lodging/Airbnb-Adoption-Growth-Has-Plateaued-According-to-Morgan-Stanley

Article #3: cnbc.com/2017/11/10/hyatt-ceo-says-airbnb-has-actually-helped-the-hotel-giant-grow.html

Article #4: cnbc.com/2017/11/09/airbnb-co-founder-on-china-growth-prospects.html

Article #5: dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5067125/amp/World-s-successful-Airbnb-landlord-earns-12million.html


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This episode is sponsored by Aviva IQ. Aviva IQ automates messages to your Airbnb guests. It's also free!

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Related Post: Wheelhouse Review: Automated Pricing For Airbnb Hosts