Airbnb reviews are vital to your success as a vacation home owner. However, they can also be quite the mystery. Understanding how Airbnb reviews work—plus knowing how to increase, respond to, and learn from these reviews—is key to consistently filling your calendar and beating your competition.
Essentially, online reviews are a battleground for guests. The vacation rental that wins their trust, wins their booking. And since travelers trust other travelers, your reviews will prove if your vacation rental is worth the money.
You can’t command guests to leave a glowing review. But there are things you can control. Here’s what to know about Airbnb reviews and how to get the most out of them.
Reviews on Airbnb consist of a star rating and a written review (up to 1,000 words)—both are optional for guests and hosts to leave. After checking out, guests are asked to rate their stay (up to 5 stars) for:
Hosts need star ratings from at least 3 guests before their overall, aggregated score appears publicly.
Airbnb uses a proprietary algorithm to rank properties in search results, but only the platform truly knows how it works. The Airbnb rating system factors in about 100 different criteria for
rankings, including reviews, star ratings, and the number of stays the homeowner has hosted.
While positive reviews help a vacation rental perform well in a search, a small number of negative ratings (or guests skipping reviews) won’t have a major impact on rankings, according to Airbnb.
Good Airbnb reviews and rankings can also help you:
Become eligible for Airbnb Plus, a new designation for the highest-quality homes on the platform.
While Airbnb automatically asks departing guests to review their stay, you can take matters into your own hands. But don’t wait until guests have already checked out. You should be encouraging guests to leave a glowing review even before they book.
Here are expert tips to getting good reviews on Airbnb, based on the categories guests will use to rate your home:
Be direct and ask for a 5-star review. Guests are busy and may not remember to leave or a review or understand what it means to you. Go ahead and ask for it.
Airbnb touts trust and transparency throughout the entire process. This means they won’t delete negative reviews because you’re simply unhappy with them. However, if a review is factually incorrect, vacation home owners can appeal to Airbnb and ask for the review to be taken down.
Airbnb will also delete reviews if a guest violates their content policy—such as including illegal or obscene content.
No matter how hard you try to create a perfect, memorable experience for your guests, you may still get a negative review on Airbnb. It may be disheartening, but you can bounce back. Airbnb gives you the opportunity to leave a public response to any guest review or send a private message to the guest.
Adrienne Digles, head of Vacasa’s reputation management team, knows how to best respond to a bad review on Airbnb. Her smart strategies include:
Most importantly, Digles encourages vacation home owners to respond to every negative review. According to ReviewTrackers:
Airbnb reviews work as two-way feedback. Just as you rely on guests to leave reviews on your home, your guests also need reviews so they can continue to easily book Airbnbs.
If you had a problematic guest (they left behind a massive mess or tried to throw a party, for example), here’s the best way to handle it:
The idea is to keep any grievances or arguments offline. Even if a guest is at fault, seeing a host vent about a guest can be extremely off-putting to future guests.
A lot goes into the Airbnb review process. Understanding how Airbnb’s rating system works can help you get more good reviews, plus bounce back after receiving bad ones—leading to more bookings overall.
Airbnb allows guests and hosts to leave star ratings and written reviews for each other within 14 days after check-out. Neither guests nor hosts can see the other’s review until both have been submitted, or until the 14-day review period has ended. This is so both parties can be as unbiased and impartial as possible.
Vacation rental reviews matter. In fact, it’s not a stretch to say that your reviews have a massive influence on your success. They also matter to guests, who are looking for safe, quality places to stay. Travelers trust other travelers. Reviews can either deter travelers from booking your home or be the reason why they book. Even with beautiful photography, a well-written description, and a professionally decorated home—consistently bad reviews could negate all the positives and send guests looking elsewhere.
Yes, Airbnb hosts can rate guests. One of Airbnb’s values is to instill trust and transparency between both guests and hosts. Guests rely on good feedback so that other Airbnb hosts will accept them into their homes. Airbnb hosts have 14 days after check-out to leave a rating and review for their guests.
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Vacasa offers property management and other real estate services directly through Vacasa LLC and through Vacasa LLC's licensed subsidiaries. Click here for more information about Vacasa's licensed real estate brokerage/property manager in your state. Vacasa’s licensed real estate brokerages/property managers include: Vacasa Alabama LLC; Vacasa Arizona LLC; Vacasa Colorado LLC (Mark Graham); Vacasa Delaware LLC, 302-541-8999; Vacasa Florida LLC; Vacasa Louisiana LLC, Dana MacCord, Principal Broker, ph 504.252.0155 (Licensed in LA); Vacasa Michigan LLC, 947-800-5979; Vacasa Missouri LLC, Susan Scanlon, Designated Broker; Vacasa Nevada LLC; Vacasa New Hampshire LLC, P.O. Box 283, Conway NH 03818, Dave Grant, Broker of Record; Vacasa New Mexico LLC, 503-345-9399; Vacasa New York LLC, 888-433-0068, Susan E. Scanlon, Real Estate Broker; Vacasa North Carolina LLC; Vacasa Pennsylvania LLC; Vacasa Real Estate Corporation, California DRE #02105811, Joseph Czapkowicz, California DRE #01380722; Vacation Palm Springs Real Estate, Inc., California DRE #01523013, Joseph Czapkowicz, California DRE #01380722; Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Colorado, Daned Kirkham); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Idaho, Oregon, and Utah); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Maine, Michael McNaboe, Designated Broker); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Texas, Debra Brock, Designated Broker); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Washington, Robert Brush, Designated Broker); Vacasa Seasonals Inc., California DRE #02160171, Lisa Renee Stevens, California DRE #01485234; Vacasa South Carolina LLC; Vacasa South Dakota LLC; Vacasa Tennessee LLC; Vacasa Vacation Rentals of Hawaii LLC, 3350 Lower Honoapiilani Road, Suite 600, Lahaina, HI 96761; Vacasa Vacation Rentals of Montana LLC, Terah M Young, Licensed Property Manager; Vacasa Virginia LLC; Vacasa Wisconsin LLC; Vacasa Wyoming LLC. In Canada, this advertisement is provided by Vacasa Canada ULC, CPBC lic. number 75826, 172 Asher Rd. V1X 3H6 Kelowna, BC.