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    How to handle a bad review—and bounce back

    Plus, find out how to respond productively to negative reviews.
    By Airbnb on May 4, 2021
    3 min read
    Updated May 4, 2021

    Highlights

    • Feedback from a negative review can help you learn how to enhance your space

    • Communicating with guests regularly can help you avoid a bad review altogether

      • Responding constructively to reviews can show potential guests you care

      Even the most hospitable Host might get a bad review sometimes. If that happens, don’t worry: a negative review can also be helpful. Remember that you can handle the situation productively—and become an even better Host.

      Feedback can help you improve your hosting

      Though it may not feel like it, feedback can be good.

      • Like many top Hosts, you can invite constructive feedback and use it to constantly improve your hosting routine and refine your listing
      • You might learn something important from a negative review—for example, maybe your space gets cold at night
      • You can use negative reviews to enhance your space by adding extra towels if a guest said there weren’t enough, or taking better photos of your creaky old house and its quirks so you set expectations up front

      Communicating often can help guests feel heard

      Though it’s not a guarantee, connecting regularly with your guests can help you sidestep a bad review.

      “Be in contact with guests on a regular basis during their stay, just to check how everything is going and if they need something,” suggests Superhost Omar of Mexico City. Other tips include:

      • If you check in often, it's easier for guests to mention if anything is wrong—and it shows guests that you care about their experience
      • You can use our scheduled messages tool to connect with guests at key moments, like booking, check-in, and checkout

      Reviews create trust between you and your guests

      Reviews build trust in the community, and even bad reviews can help you build your hosting business.

      • It’s smart to read every review—and check out the private feedback guests leave for some insider info
      • Positive reviews tell potential guests about your amazing hosting style
      • You can use constructive criticism to upgrade your amenities, change your check-in process, or update your listing description to be more accurate
      • Being more clear and specific in your listing description can help set expectations for future guests
      Be in contact with guests on a regular basis during their stay, just to check how everything is going and if they need something.
      Superhost Omar

      Responding to reviews with a friendly public answer

      If a review feels unfair, writing a graceful and friendly public response can help.

      • Guests tell us that seeing a Host engage and respond to feedback makes them feel more confident booking, because they know the Host cares
      • You can post a response to reviews that others leave for you within 30 days of when the review was written, though in most cases, you can't remove them*
      • It’s a good idea to start your response by acknowledging the feedback and thanking your guest for it
      • You can also give additional information, provide your perspective of a situation, or address feedback
      • If applicable, share the steps you’ve taken to update or improve your space to reassure other guests
      • Though it can be tempting, it’s best to avoid being defensive or escalating the tone of the interaction

      Nobody wants a bad review. But if you receive one, a friendly response alongside an honest attempt to improve the experience can actually help guests feel even more comfortable with booking your space. Keep focusing on providing the amazing hospitality that only you can provide, and before you know it, you might even become a Superhost.

      *Reviews are only removed if they violate our Review Policy. You can report a review that you believe goes against the policy.
      Information contained in this article may have changed since publication.

      Highlights

      • Feedback from a negative review can help you learn how to enhance your space

      • Communicating with guests regularly can help you avoid a bad review altogether

        • Responding constructively to reviews can show potential guests you care

        Airbnb
        May 4, 2021
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