Writing an effective description of your place
We’ve learned from Superhosts that your place doesn’t have to be perfect to be popular, but you do need to let guests know exactly what they’ll find when they arrive.
Writing a great description of your place is one of the best ways to set expectations and secure reservations. Here’s how to get travellers excited about staying in your space.
Write a catchy title
The title of your listing is the first thing guests read and, along with your cover photo, gets them to explore your listing page. Use it to call attention to your space’s biggest assets.
Here are a few examples of great titles:
- Cosy cabin with chef’s kitchen
- Dog-friendly studio near LAX
- Beachside villa with kayaks
You have 32 characters, including spaces, to spark guests’ interest in learning more about your place. Why so few? Shorter titles work best on smartphones and tablets, which are used in 75% of all searches on Airbnb.
Avoid using emojis or symbols and only capitalise proper names (like “Yellowstone”) and standard abbreviations (like “LAX”).
Focus on special features
There are millions of places to stay on Airbnb. To convey what’s special about yours, take a few minutes to think about the features that really set it apart, such as its location or amenities.
Depending on your situation, you might note:
- “We’re a 10-minute walk from two of the best craft breweries in town.”
- “The area’s legendary mountain bike trails are only a 15-minute pedal or a five-minute drive away.”
For inspiration, try reading listing descriptions written by other Hosts and check out their reviews. You’ll be able to learn what types of info and amenities people really appreciate in a listing.
Tell the story of your space
Your description is where you market your space, and storytelling is a key part of effective marketing. You don’t have to be a great writer to create an appealing description but you do have to use clear, compelling language.
If you’re not sure how to begin, chat with a friend and describe what it’s like to stay at your place. The most important details are likely to come out right away in a conversational way that makes for a strong listing description.
The story you tell can be about the experience you’re offering guests. Have a top-floor apartment that’s surrounded by trees? “You’ll feel like you’re in a tree house!” A modest room in the city centre can be “a perfect base for exploring the city”.
Tereasa and David, Superhosts in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, say that sharing the history of their property has “struck a chord” with their guests. They recommend getting to know your community and finding out what’s interesting about your home or your town as you craft your story.
Keep it brief
Guests searching for a place to stay often scan listing descriptions for key features without reading every word. Keep your listing description relatively short, with important info at the beginning, so your potential guests don’t have to spend time searching for it.
On the same note, try not to repeat details you’ve already shared. For example, you can use the amenities checklist to include all the features your space offers, such as wifi, parking and air conditioning. This keeps your description brief and also ensures your listing will appear when guests filter for those amenities in their searches.
Be authentic and honest
Overselling or exaggerating your place can lead to disappointment and negative reviews. Being realistic helps guests decide whether your space meets their needs before making a reservation.
“In your listing, make sure you include descriptions of your property’s quirks,” says Nikki, a Superhost in San Francisco. “Explain them in a way that’s honest and clear, without being a turnoff. You want to provide enough transparency to help your guests select the property they want.”It’s especially important to add accessibility features and highlight aspects of your property that could pose a challenge for some guests, including those with limited mobility, young children or pets. The “Other details to note” and “The space” sections of your listing description are two places you can put this info.
Make the most of photo captions
Your photos factor heavily into a guest’s decision about whether to book your space, and captions provide an opportunity to connect visuals to the experiences guests will have. If you find yourself stumped on how to caption a photo, think about what you can add that the camera doesn’t necessarily capture.
If you’re showing a bedroom, tell your guests what size the bed is and mention the type of mattress, if relevant. Have a photo of a cosy window nook? You could mention that it’s an ideal place to curl up with a book at sunset.
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