Why hotels should consider listing on Airbnb

Blogs At Velvet Marketing

Over 60 million people have now used Airbnb to find accommodation described as home away from home that supposedly cannot be replicated by hotels. However, today, some hotels have successfully used Airbnb to find new customers which in turn is presenting a threat to the OTA business model, as anticipated by Expedia CFO Mark Okertstrom at a conference in 2015.

While Expedia and Priceline, typically charge hotels a 10% to 25% fee per reservation. Airbnb, by contrast, charges hosts a 3% fee, making it substantially more attractive for hotels and property managers to utilize.

Although most of the 2 million listings on its Airbnb are a second home or an extra room for rent, increasingly “mega hosts” are becoming apparent with hundreds or even thousands of listings per person!

At face value these “mega hosts” still have a name and a photo, reviews and what have you, but what is apparent is that they are part of a growing number of buildings listed, which in fact are run by a hotel management company with a front desk check-in.

There are even a growing number of boutique hotels listing their “rooms” on Airbnb. In New York city alone there are now 3,500 listings belonging to hosts that have more than three whole properties associated with boutique hotels, bed & breakfast and budget hotels, even individual properties from chain hotels are jumping the bandwagon.

Although Airbnb is being challenged about its spirit for going down this road as supposed to being a peer to peer home sharing site, the company has adopted multiple technological advancement to enable this shift.

Until last year, “mega hosts” were names and photos of real people, normally a sales manager of the particular hotel, but in 2016 Airbnb launched its tools for professionals and created a team dedicated to dealing with property managers making it easier for hotels to list their properties as hotels.

In conclusion, Airbnb may have started as a peer to peer home sharing site, but it obviously has large appetite for expanding into the OTA territory and therefore, hotels must find ways to test this platform or risk being left behind.