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How can hospitality and real estate professionals use Airbnb’s data to grow their business?

Building on my last article on how owners are winners in the sharing economy, I would like to focus on how you can use data on the vacation and short term rental market to guide your real estate and hospitality strategies.

Let’s start with understanding how the travel and lodging industry is evolving. Airbnb has popularised a new accommodation asset in the industry that increases booking stays and guest expenditure in the city: apartment rentals that allow you to live like a local.

Airbnb's success with this accommodation asset has generated impressive growth metrics. For example, the chart you see, although dated 2015, shows the exponential growth Airbnb has been experiencing. This level of growth demands more measurement to understand the performance and impact Airbnb listings have in the local lodging and travel market.

Scraping publicly available data on the Airbnb website through bots - i.e. the same spider bots google uses to index websites to make it searchable - can give you important insights.

This data when cleaned gives accurate data day to day on the growth of stock on Airbnb and each listing’s location, accommodation type, branding, pricing, occupancy, cleaning costs, revenue, and reviews.

Visualising and turning this data actionable can allow a variety of uses:

1. Hotel managers when setting their revenue management strategy can analyse past historical booking data to see how Airbnb impacted compression events to set better hotel pricing.

2. Real estate investors interested in the residential buy to rent market, can leverage Airbnb’s data to invest in areas showing the most traffic and revenue for Airbnb listings to increase their return on investment.

This also means that estate agencies such as Foxtons, can use Airbnb’s data on prospective rental yields to add value to homes they list for sale.

3. Airbnb hosts and Airbnb managers can benchmark their listing's performance to the market and understand the secrets behind top performing properties.

Understanding the performance of vacation and urban rentals from online travel agents can be an asset in many ways to hotels, real estate professionals, Airbnb hosts/managers.

The one matter to address that is becoming nearly synonymous with Airbnb, is regulation.

Hosting both in London and Amsterdam I’ve grown accustomed to a strict regulatory climate: London holds a 90 day short term rental limit for residential properties and Amsterdam a shorter 60 days.

With this said, the question as always is compliance. London holds upwards of 40,000 Airbnb listings that experiences double digit percentage growth year on year, as well as thousands of listings on alternative booking platforms such as, Home Away, and Trip Advisor; this means local councils are struggling to unlock the budget to police the 90 day letting quota.

What's more, outside London there currently is no regulations for vacation rentals, meaning Airbnb in my eyes still plays a increasingly important role in hospitality and real estate strategies in the UK.

If interested in understanding more about how you can leverage Airbnb's data for your business, feel free to reach out to our team here at Signature Made.

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