Before most people book through Airbnb, they’ll send you a comment with a few general questions. However, they’re also likely to send a comment to two or more other hosts. In general, whichever host responds first wins. Of course, some hosts may not be able to accommodate certain guests, but you must view enquiries as extremely time sensitive. Responding quickly not only gets you more bookings, but it also helps to increase your ranking onsite.
PRO TIP: Save time an save some of our common message templates in your Airbnb saved messages.
Strive to respond to any enquiries within one hour. This will tremendously help your ranking and will ensure people book with you first. The next level is 90 minutes, and from there, you’re likely to miss out on a number of bookings. To help, download the official Airbnb app on your phone so you can quickly respond no matter where you are.
Most guests don’t ask about discounts, but you’re likely to get a few every now and then. You can set automatic discounts for stays of one week or more, but in general, you don’t want to give into short-term discounts. First of all, a discount for a weekend stay does nothing but eat into your profits. Secondly, the type of guest that asks for an unnecessary discount is also the type to complain about trivial things. They may be entitled, and they’re more prone to making a mess during their stay. This isn’t always true, but it’s worth keeping in mind. However, you should still respond to any discount enquiries with a polite note.
Suspicious and Problematic Enquiries
Unfortunately, you may encounter a suspicious or problematic enquiry from time to time. While there’s no surefire way to prevent a scammer or fake user from contacting you, there are some ways you can notice them and then block or report them.
Some common red-flags to look out for include:
- Accounts created the same month
- Accounts without a facial profile picture
- A seemingly fake facial photo
- Not yet verified
- A sob story
- Extensive excuses in their enquiry
- Non-personalized headers (when a guest simply says “Hello” without addressing you by your name)
Often times, a strange enquirer will have a story about losing their ID, and since they can’t get verified, they can’t officially book through Airbnb. They may ask to pay you in cash upon arrival, but you should never accept these types of deals under any circumstances. Instead, you can report them to Airbnb immediately.
Sometimes, fake users will use a model’s face as their own profile picture, and you should use your best judgement on what’s real or not.