Is Running an Airbnb Right for You?
Before deciding to start an Airbnb business, it’s important to understand the skills and approach you’re likely to need.
A Day in the Life of an Airbnb Host
Here are some of the typical tasks you’ll be performing for your Airbnb business on a daily basis.
- Answering questions from guests and providing useful information
- Arranging for cleaning and other routine tasks at your properties
- Taking care of repairs and maintenance
- Ensuring that bookings are up-to-date
- Getting information and photos to create compelling Airbnb listings
- Uploading and managing listings on the Airbnb platform
- Minimizing cancellations of planned visits
- Setting prices for guests to stay in your property
- Responding to reviews from guests
Skills Needed by an Airbnb Business Entrepreneur
The following skills will be very useful in your role as an Airbnb small business owner.
- Organizational skills to stay on top of your enquiries and bookings
- Interpersonal skills for managing the people that provide cleaning, maitenance and other services at your properties
- Planning skills to offer the amenities, supplies and services that your guests want
- Financial management skills so you understand the money you’re earning from rentals
What Your Airbnb Guests are Looking For
Airbnb customers, commonly known as guests, are looking for:
- Properties that match the listings provided by the host
- Properties that are safe, clean, and well-located for their needs
- Properties that are priced appropriately for their location, demand and the time of year
- Common amenities including clean sheets, toiletries, a first aid kit, etc.
- Easy access to the property
- Important information like contact details, good local restaurants, transit stops, emergency service numbers, etc.
Creating a Unique Airbnb Business
When it comes to starting an Airbnb business, you want to make sure that
your property and listings are unique, so you can attract customers. You can do this by highlighting certain aspects in your listings:
- Get a professional to photograph your property, so it’s portrayed in the best way
- Invest in making your property look good, with a fresh coat of paint, new furniture and a deep clean
- Highlight anything unique about the property, like original features or unusual facilities
- Show how close you are to public transport, local points of interest and restaurants
- Maintain a listing that gets good reviews from guests and builds trust
Validating Your Airbnb Business
Getting started in an Airbnb business is easy, but becoming a success is harder. Before committing too much time, energy and money into
your new Airbnb business, it’s important to test the marketplace.
- Identify your Airbnb business’s unique selling points (USPs): We’ve covered some key points on how to differentiate your
listings above, but it’s important to reiterate: If you want your Airbnb business to be a success, you do need to stand out.
- Look at who your competitors are in the space: Having competitors is a good thing as it shows there’s a market, but you want to avoid
too much competition. Look at how many other hosts are providing accommodation close to your location, and see how they position their
listings and prices.
- Understand your market: You might want to target your listings to a particular type of guest, so if you know there’s a market, make
sure your accommodation reflects what might be of value to them. For example, younger people might want vibrant nightlife and a very modern
place to stay, while older people could want more peace and quiet, with natural outside space.
- Get involved with business communities and discussion groups: One of the great things about Airbnb business is that there are plenty
of great communities and discussion groups. Get involved in them and learn the ins and outs of your chosen market before committing.
Your Airbnb Business Needs a Business Plan
You might not think you need a business plan for your Airbnb business—after all, if you’re getting guests through Airbnb, and they’re paying, you don’t
need a business plan, right? Wrong.
You need to define how you’re going to run your Airbnb business, market your property, get sales, make a profit and grow. This can only come about
through creating a watertight business plan. It will help you get your thinking in order and show your commitment to your Airbnb business.
You will also need to look at financial projections for your Airbnb business. What are your expected booking revenues? How much is it costing you to buy
and maintain the property? What is your profitability? How much money will you keep in the business to grow it? How much will you pay yourself and
Business plans do vary slightly, but they should all cover the following areas: