While not currently a big player for Texas coast rentals in the future it could be for the newer resort destination products on the drawing board.
Hotel consulting company HVS came out with a new report suggesting that hotel executives first need to have an “awareness of the increasing quality, availability, and economy of lodging options offered through Airbnb. Many hoteliers and hotel executives are too quick to dismiss Airbnb, thinking its listings far too humble, too inconsistent, and too unappealing to travelers accustomed to more upscale accommodations.”
“So it’s not insignificant but Airbnb is mostly a lower priced product. You know, we’re priced at $200 a night. They’re probably priced around $100 a night. Their average stay is five nights. Ours is probably about two nights. They’re heavily skewed toward leisure. We’re heavily skewed toward business. And so I think they’re going to get into that market but I’m not totally worried about them. They’re a bigger competitor for more limited service hotels at a lower price point.”
As for the notion that Airbnb caters only to the leisure market, Lev-Ram replied to Depatie’s above statement saying that she rents her place often on Airbnb, and most of her guests are business travelers.
The whitepaper states that Airbnb doesn’t “offer any consistent amenities (such as Internet access, food and beverage outlets, concierge services, recreational amenities, or parking) that are standard at full-service hotels.”
It is exactly those amenities that many travelers who fit the Airbnb profile don’t want to pay for, or even require, and which build in significant additional cost. As for the issue of Wi-Fi, the quality of in-room online access is often abysmal in many large branded hotels, not to mention overly expensive. Meanwhile, the average Wi-Fi access at most individual residences in modern cities is satisfactory for even heavy users with two or more devices.
The report sums up, “it would be wise for hoteliers to look into finding ways to list their rooms on Airbnb as well.” What hotels are not taking into account is the overall “cool factor” and mystique surrounding Airbnb and other alternative accommodations offering a unique experience .
That, as much as price, is driving Airbnb’s market penetration.
How the Top 5 Booking Sites Compete on Facebook for Users and Likes
The reality is, today’s traveler has a more holistic approach in organizing their trips. They want information and reviews from real people which allows them to freely make their own association with destinations, activities, and events. On the flip side, online travel agents are expanding their offerings and becoming more like concierge services to better meet their customers’ interests to keep them on their site long enough and often enough to convert.
Priceline’s recent acquisition of OpenTable rekindled the M&A buzz in the online travel booking sector after TripAdvisor’s purchase of Lafourchette last month. Acquisitions like these are strategic plays in customer acquisition, segmentation, and targeted advertising. Priceline and TripAdvisor will be able to better understand their customers’ tendencies in hospitality, destinations, and prices through restaurant search and reservations.
1. Booking.com had the largest audience online and the second largest on Facebook — behind Hotels.com’s Likes. Its album post on June 6, “Whatever you are into… we’ve got it!” set off the the winning content streak with its audience. Fans responded very well to identifying their personality with a hotel type and subsequently showed high interest in the uploaded photos for another week.
2. Airbnb had the least amount of desktop visits but had the most engaging content on Facebook with Booking.com coming in as the second most effective. On May 9 it launched is latest global video campaign and it slowly gained momentum as local versions were released in Australasia and parts of Europe. About two weeks later, it posted its video natively on Facebook and it slowly sparked another climb. There is no doubt that the content effort was planned well and deliberately timed.
3. TripAdvisor showcased its fans’ photos by way of a Facebook album and it caught the attention of 5,000 more unique visitors towards the last week of April. The next photo of the week shoutout also worked in the brand’s favor. It took place in mid-May, motivated its audience to submit photos in the comments and show their appreciation by liking the photos they fancy.
4. Although Hotels.com was the most popular on Facebook, its negative Talking About 60-Day Average Change is a result of its widely successful TV commercial with ‘Captain Obvious’ that doubled this metric to a high of 36,000 unique viewers for the first two weeks in May and the sharp drop to an average of 12,500 unique viewers for the remainder of the period.
5. Expedia’s strategy to acquire new Instagram Followers and engage new and existing fans from its Facebook community was a productive use of its country vs. city call-to-action contest at the end of April. In mid-May it cross-promoted its mobile app through a Memorial Day offer of a $50 discount to the first hotel booking made on the app.