5 Important Factors to Becoming an Airbnb Superhost

Dec 14, 2023

5 Important Factors to Becoming an Airbnb Superhost

The short-term vacation rental market has grown exponentially over the last few years. Emerging markets such as Brazil and India have more short-term rentals than hotel rooms, with Brazil having 68% more short-term rentals than hotels and India having 44% more short-term rental listings than hotels. North American listings grew from approximately 2.5 million units in January 2022 to 3.5 million in 2023.

With over 4 million hosts on Airbnb and 1.5 billion guests on the platform, the competition is fierce. One way to stand out is by becoming an Airbnb Superhost. Here’s how to pull it off. 

What is an Airbnb Superhost?

Airbnb launched its Superhost program in 2016 to reward top-performing hosts by giving them a VIP status that would lead to improved visibility and more revenue. As the number of Airbnb listings has grown, the Superhost program has allowed Airbnb to promote hosts who have consistently performed on the platform and provided an excellent experience for guests. In 2020, only 19.4% of hosts had achieved the Superhost status on Airbnb.

Airbnb evaluates all hosts on the platform quarterly. If your property meets the program requirements by the assessment date, you will automatically receive the Superhost designation. Airbnb will notify you of your Superhost status and add a badge to your listing.

Airbnb conducts a quarterly assessment of host performance, which begins on January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1 and lasts five days. To qualify for Superhost status, hosts are evaluated based on their performance over the past 12 months.

Benefits of becoming a Superhost

If you have an Airbnb rental, it’s worth getting the special recognition and perks of becoming a Superhost. Here are some benefits you can expect:

  • Improved visibility: Becoming an Airbnb Superhost comes with the significant advantage of increased visibility on the platform. Apart from the “Superhosts only” Airbnb search filter that enables guests to search for listings from top-rated hosts, you are more likely to be featured in curated lists and the Airbnb newsletter. With more eyes on your listing, you’ll have a higher chance of booking guests, increasing your earnings.
  • Airbnb perks and exclusive rewards: To incentivize the Superhost program, Airbnb gives each Superhost a $100 Airbnb coupon every year, as long as they keep their status. Superhosts are also given an additional 20% referral bonus when they refer a host to the platform. Superhosts get priority support from Airbnb and invitations to local events.
  • Higher occupancy: According to AirDNA, which researches data and trends in the short-term rental market, Superhosts earn 5.9% more revenue annually in the United States. This is largely due to a 5% improvement in listing traffic and an 81% higher occupancy rate than non-Superhosts.
  • Greater trust: Earning the Superhost badge enhances guests’ confidence in a host’s listing. When a guest is new to the platform or has to decide between multiple listings, the Superhost badge can provide the extra assurance needed to decide. This increased trust can also increase conversion rates when guests view listings with the Superhost label.

How to become a Superhost on Airbnb

According to their website, Airbnb Superhost requirements for hosts include:

  • You must have completed at least 10 trips or three reservations that total at least 100 nights.
  • Your response rate must be at 90% or higher.
  • You must have kept your cancellation rate below 1%, except for cancellations falling under Airbnb’s Extenuating Circumstances policy. This policy covers government-imposed travel requirements, emergencies, pandemics, natural disasters, military actions, and other similar scenarios.
  • You must have maintained a 4.8 overall rating or 80% 5-star reviews. According to Airbnb, “a review counts towards Superhost status when either the guest and the Host have submitted a review, or the 14-day window for reviews is over, whichever comes first.”

5 important factors to becoming an Airbnb Superhost

You can take several actions to improve your listings and grow your profile to qualify for an Airbnb Superhost spot. Here are some that will get results fast.

1. Use stunning, high-quality photographs

Potential guests’ initial impression of your property comes from the photos you provide, so it’s crucial to get them right. It’s important to strike a balance with your photographs. While you want to showcase your property’s best features and appeal to your guests, you don’t want to oversell it. If a guest’s experience doesn’t live up to what was promised in the photos, they are unlikely to leave a good review. Consider hiring a professional real estate photographer to take accurate, high-quality images highlighting your property’s best features.

2. Keep it clean and functional

Positive guest reviews and consistently high star ratings are essential for getting a Superhost badge; therefore, your property must be clean and well-managed. Prioritizing your guests’ ease and comfort will make for a more enjoyable experience, leading to higher ratings and reviews. Inspect the property yourself or hire a property management company to do a sweep after each stay so you can ensure that all facilities are in working order and sofas and beds are clean and comfortable.

3. Add extra surprises

Make it your goal to surprise and delight your guests at every opportunity. This doesn’t mean you must spend additional money — you are trying to keep your profits high. However, little thoughtful touches can massively impact your guest’s experience and make them want to rave about you both in their reviews and to their friends. Leaving a welcome basket with local ingredients and snacks guests can have upon check-in is always a good idea. You can create special itineraries or collaborate with local businesses to offer discounts or travel coupons. If you can add unique experiences in or around your property, those go a long way in making guests feel welcome and looked after.

4. Have excellent guest communication

To become an Airbnb Superhost, maintaining a response rate of 90% or higher is necessary, which can only be achieved by promptly and efficiently responding to guest messages. Quick responses lead to faster bookings and happier guests and improve the likelihood of receiving better reviews. Whether addressing booking-related questions or resolving issues during a guest’s stay, a response time of 24 hours is a good rule of thumb.

5. Avoid cancellations

It is crucial to avoid canceling bookings whenever possible since a cancellation rate of over 1% would make you ineligible for the Airbnb Superhost status. Airbnb wants to ensure you are a dependable host who does not prioritize profit at guests’ expense by double-booking listings. A low cancellation rate will help increase your search visibility and encourage more bookings. However, cancellations resulting from situations outside your control, such as government directives, military actions, travel bans, or natural disasters, will not be included in your cancellation rate.

Why Arrived works with third-party property managers

Arrived entered the vacation rental market in October 2022, and we’ve launched several properties in this category since then, including The Oasis and The Hammock. We partner with local third-party property managers for all our properties.

Our team uses specific criteria to select a partner, including ensuring they meet all insurance, legal, and accounting requirements. Additionally, the partner must have vast experience and tenure in the chosen market, know what it takes for a property to outperform, and have an excellent reputation for guest responsiveness and ratings. It is preferred that the partner holds titles such as Airbnb Superhost, VRBO Premier Partner, and Marriot Bonvoy. Finding the right partner may require time, but it is essential to successfully enter and expand our presence in a highly competitive vacation rental market.

Becoming an Airbnb Superhost is an excellent way to boost your occupancy rate and earnings on the platform. If you’re in the short-term vacation rental business and regularly list your properties on Airbnb, aiming for the Superhost badge is a no-brainer. It ensures that your property remains consistently profitable and gets in front of increasing number of guests.

Interested in vacation rentals but not the hassle of becoming a Superhost? Anyone can invest in short-term rentals through Arrived’s platform. We offer a range of properties in several vacation markets, so you can choose the locations and locale that fit your needs. 

The opinions expressed in this article are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual or on any specific security or investment product. The views reflected in the commentary are subject to change at any time without notice. View Arrived’s disclaimers

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