Hosting on Airbnb is an amazing way to grow your travel funds and provide meaningful local experiences to travellers. If you haven't tried it out, we tell you exactly how to get started in our guide. But just as traveller reviews impact hotel choices when trip planning, so too does Airbnb's “Superhost” label sway the minds of would-be guests. In fact, Superhosts receive upwards of 22% more bookings than hosts without this title. But why do guests seek out Superhosts, and what makes them so super?
Superhosts make holidays remarkably smoother for travellers. By adhering to set criteria, including making no cancellations and having quick response times, guests avoid inconveniences. Superhosts receive perks as well, including a $100 travel credit, increased bookings, higher host referral payouts, and increased exposure of one's property in the Airbnb homepage, newsletters, and more.
Intrigued? You should be. Reaching Superhost status is a great way to wow your guests, and increase your bookings, all whilst growing your travel funds. In this post, we'll explain how to becoming a Superhost quickly and easily!
What is an Airbnb Superhost?
An Airbnb Superhost is someone who provides exceptional guest experiences for Airbnb users. This label is granted by meeting a set list of criteria from Airbnb (discussed further below). When these measures are followed, Superhost status is awarded automatically (i.e. hosts needn't apply).
Why should I care about being an Airbnb Superhost?
There are three big advantages to becoming a superhost:
- Increased earnings
- Improved visibility of your listing
- Bigger payouts from Airbnb host referrals
From a traveller's perspective, Superhosts are restricted from cancelling bookings, so the reassurance of no cancellation can be persuasive enough alone to book with a Superhost. This is especially true for those travelling in a popular or high-density area with limited availability, as it alleviates travellers' concerns about hosts cancelling or being unresponsive.
One last important perk that is accessible only to Superhosts is the improved visibility of one's listing. Superhost properties can be featured by Airbnb via their newsletters, e-mails, and on the main website. Additionally, users can also filter their Airbnb searches to look for Superhosts only, as illustrated in the image above. This exclusive featuring is a major advantage to getting more eyes on your property.
Airbnb Superhost Criteria
As mentioned, a set of criteria must be met in order to gain Superhost status. These measures include:
- Have had at least 10 booked guest trips OR successfully completed 3 long term reservations that total at least 100 nights
- Maintained a 50% review rate or higher
- Maintained a 90% response rate or higher
- Zero cancellations, except for situations that fall under Airbnb's Extenuating Circumstances policy
- Maintain an overall 4.8/5 rating
To view your Superhost status, simply open your Airbnb host dashboard. Superhost assessments are done four times a year on January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1. The assessment reviews your performance over the 365 days leading up to that date. If granted Superhost status, it can take a couple of days for the badge to display on your profile. For Airbnb's full Superhost terms and conditions, read here.
How to become an Airbnb Superhost in 5 simple steps:
Step 1. Make NO cancellations (i.e. manage your calendar!)
Making zero cancellations – except under Airbnb's extenuating circumstances – is one of the key requirements to being a Superhost. This can be done by ensuring your booking calendar is always up to date. Whether your home is available on sporadic weekends or most months of the year, you must only list dates where you can accept reservations.
When in doubt (i.e. if you do not know your availability in coming months), work in reverse and block out all upcoming dates, only opening days up as your availability becomes known. This prevents you from mistakenly leaving dates open months ahead, only to have a guest make a booking that you must cancel.
Step 2. Maintain a 90% response rate or higher
Any traveller can relate to the convenience that is having a host who promptly responds to queries. Superhosts must reply to at least 90% of messages received within 24 hours. One simple way to achieve this is by having the Airbnb app on your phone. If you are unable to respond to a message due to being busy or away on vacation yourself, you can use a service like Smartbnb to manage your messages, or a site like TaskRabbit (Get $10 off your first task with NEW10US) to have someone completely manage your bookings, check-in, and so on.
Step 3. Maintain an overall rating of 4.8 or higher
Keeping a property rating of 4.8/5 may seem a feat, but this can readily be done if you consider the factors that guests must rank. Below are the 6 aspects for review after a booking, followed by tips to encourage a raving appraisal for each:
- Ensure property matches listing descriptions
- Be upfront about downfalls, which can be counter balanced with positives – e.g. your space may be tiny but it's “cozy!” or may be near a highway but is “convenient for driving!” If your place is a bit older, try to highlight its “retro” charm!
- Do not be deceitful. Dishonesty or exaggeration will only harm your guest reviews
- If you're still having trouble, there are experienced freelancers offering professional Airbnb listing services that you can consider.
- Be clear and timely with guest interactions
- Consider a service like Smartbnb to automate messaging, or hire someone to manage your messaging on Taskrabbit (Get $10 off your first task with NEW10US).
- Be polite and friendly in all communication
- Encourage your guests to message if they need anything
- Ensure property is well cleaned on checkout
- Avoid common slip ups like stained linens, improperly cleaned dishes, dust and scum on floors or appliances, and improperly stocked toiletries like shampoo or toilet paper
- Consider hiring a professional cleaner via a third party service
- Handy lets you book and manage house cleaning services online. You get an instant quote based on your area and the size of your home, and your cleaner will be a background-checked professional. Get $30 off your first booking with coupon code AFF30.
- Taskrabbit is a site to find professionals for all sorts of odd jobs that can help with your listing, including cleaning, key handoff, and guest messaging. Get $10 off your first task with NEW10US
- Be accurate in your description – e.g. do not write “convenient city pad” if your apartment is in fact 45 minutes from the city centre
- Look at listings in your area for ideas on what the selling features of your neighbourhood may be, such as amazing local eats, markets, or festivals
- Make clear any check-in instructions to your guests well before their arrival
- Add check-in info by going to “Guest resources” and selecting regular or self-check in. Instructions can be input here
- Be reasonable with check-in and check-out times to provide an optimal guest experience
- Consider investing in a key lockbox or smartlock to allow guests to self check-in
- Be informed with an accurate price analysis of your property. Airbnb provides this based on demand, reviews, and similar properties in your area
- Charging a fair rate is likely to land you more bookings & satisfied guests and in turn, better reviews
Step 4. Have an active host account
A Superhost must sustain their activity on Airbnb. Specifically, this means having had at least 10 short-term guest trips or 3 long term guest reservations totalling 100 nights or more.
Step 5. Maintain a 50% review rate
Superhosts must have at least half of their guests review their property. Some ways to encourage guests to leave a host review include:
- Promptly leaving a review of your guest after their visit
- Leaving a gentle request to leave a review in a welcome package/instructions. This can be done via Airbnb or in a printed booklet at the property (e.g. “Thank you for your stay, we hope you've enjoyed yourself. If you enjoyed your visit, would you kindly leave a review to inform other travellers”). If you want to go the extra mile, consider leaving a locally-inspired gift such as local chocolates, tea, coffee, or a souvenir.
- Messaging guests after their visit to thank them for their stay and kindly request a review (do not do this more than once so as to avoid annoying guests)
The Thrifty Gist
- Airbnb Superhost status is achieved by adhering to Airbnbs set criteria that is reviewed quarterly and applied automatically to your account
- Superhosts enjoy exclusive perks including increase bonus host referrals, higher rates of booking, better earnings, and increased opportunities to have their property featured by Airbnb
- Maintaining a high response rate, a review of 4.8 or higher, being active on Airbnb, and making zero cancellations are all essential to gaining and keeping Superhost status
- Consider third party services to improve your overall process such as a professionally written listing, maintaining communications with Smartbnb, using a cleaning service like Handy (get $30 off your first cleaning with coupon code AFF30), or outsourcing the start to end booking & comms with Taskrabbit (Get $10 off your first task with NEW10US).
- Consider investing in a key lockbox or smartlock to allow guests to self check-in