Airbnb Integration Update

Slowly but surely we are working through all of the nuances of integrating to Airbnb.  We are hoping for a soft launch with a few selected customers in the last week of May. Before that however I thought it would be good to review how the Airbnb integration will work and what will comprise their minimum listing requirements.

The listing review process

Listing review process
All listings being managed via a third party Channel Partner must meet a minimum set of criteria prior to being live on Airbnb. The process of evaluating that minimum criteria may take up to 5
business days. You will be notified via email once your listings are live on the platform. If your listings were rejected, you will have an opportunity to modify the content and resubmit. As soon as
your listings are approved, they will begin appearing in search results on airbnb.com.

Airbnb listing minimum requirements
Airbnb expects our Channel-connected listings to meet a set of minimum content requirements,including:
● Minimum 8 characters in Listing Title
● Minimum 50 characters in Listing Description
● Minimum 70 days available with the next 365 days
● 7 or more images
● At least 3 photos have a minimum resolution of 1024 x 683 pixels @ 72 dpi
● 5 or more amenities
We do not allow hosts to connect via a Channel Partner in select urban destinations. For more information on the minimum listing requirements or regional restrictions, please contact your
Market Manager.

Transferring reviews to your new account
If you have been managing your listings through a manual Airbnb account, your Market Manager can help you transfer any reviews to your new, Channel-connected account. You can initiate this
process as soon as the connected listings are live on the platform. Please note that the review transfer process is a 1:1 host transfer: we cannot transfer reviews from a single host account across
multiple Channel-connected accounts, or consolidate reviews across multiple accounts into a single host account. Once this transfer process is complete, please deactivate the listings tied to
your manually-managed account to avoid duplicate listings on the Airbnb platform. Please note that listing and reservation data will not be transferred over as part of this review transfer process,
so there may be a period of time where you are managing reservations across 2 different accounts.

Note: if you are a Superhost transitioning over to an API-managed account, please alert your Market Manager of your Superhost status. They will be able to provide additional
recommendations for the transfer process that will avoid jeopardizing your Superhost standing.

Managing guest inquiries

Instant Book and channel-connected listings
All channel-connected listings are automatically enabled for “Instant Book.” This means that a guest reservation inquiry will be instantly confirmed as long as your listing calendar shows availability.
Airbnb listings enabled for Instant Book convert at a rate almost 2x higher than a listing that requires hosts to confirm a reservation. It also boosts your performance in our search ranking.
If for any reason you are uncomfortable with your guest, or they violate your host rules, you may cancel your reservation without penalty. Please reach out to your Market Managers for support or
questions regarding Instant Booking reservations.

Managing guest communications
Airbnb guests and hosts may communicate with each other via our messaging platform. Today, we do not pass messaging data through our API, which means you may not be able to manage your
Airbnb messages via your Property Management or Channel Management software. To respond to guest messages, you can log into airbnb.com and reply via your user inbox. We also
recommend configuring your account to receive email and/or text notifications every time a guest contacts you. You can set this up by navigating to the “Account Settings” portion of your account.
Any users with email notifications enabled can respond to Airbnb messages by replying directly to email notification. Airbnb does not allow for hosts to use the message system to transfer contact
information like email addresses, phone numbers or links to direct websites prior to a confirmed booking.

Post-Booking communication
Once an Airbnb booking is confirmed, a guest will be able to view the property address, check-in instructions, and House Manual on the Airbnb platform. We will also provide you with the guest’s
phone number details, and share your preferred phone number with the guest to facilitate better communication before and during your trip. Airbnb generates a platform-specific email alias for each user that can be emailed directly. This means you can communicate to guests without logging into the Airbnb platform. This email address expires 2 weeks (14 days) after a trip is complete.

By | 2017-05-16T14:46:40+00:00 May 16th, 2017|New Features|0 Comments

Lodgix now supports subcategories

In the past a property could only be assigned to one category which could be used in filtering properties.   Of course filtering by # of bedrooms, price, amenities, etc was possible.. but search by location was limited to one parent category.   Thus if you have properties in Paris, your search location would be limited to Paris.   Now however subcategories can be assigned to parent categories allowing properties to be assigned to any of Paris’s arrondissements or areas.

Read the full blog post on this great new feature.

By | 2017-05-12T17:39:02+00:00 May 12th, 2017|New Features|0 Comments

Create a Reservation from an iCal Block with One Click

The newest Lodgix feature allows users to convert an iCal block to a reservation with just a single click.

Click on the block you want to convert

Click the Create Reservation button

That’s it! The block has been replaced with a reservation

The new reservation can be updated or modified just like any other. This feature is only available for blocks created via iCal. It will not work for blocks that have been created by subscribers, employees, or owners.

Most iCal feeds will not include the guests email address, and thus it cannot be used when creating the reservation. In these circumstances, Lodgix will generate a system email. This can be manually updated with the guests actual email address. If any additional information is passed through the feed (comments, etc.) it will be captured and stored in the Invoice Comments area of the guest control panel.

By | 2017-03-30T18:01:58+00:00 March 30th, 2017|New Features|0 Comments

SMS New Booking Alerts Have Launched!

It is now possible to configure a text alert (SMS) when new online bookings occur.   To configure this service:

  1. Navigate to settings > important settings within Lodgix (https://www.lodgix.com/system/isettings/bookings/)
  2. Go to the Bookings Tab
  3. Verify your mobile phone number, and then click on Verify Phone and enter the code that is sent to you via SMS.
  4. Once complete a SMS alert will be sent to that number for every new online booking (see example below)



By | 2017-02-28T15:44:25+00:00 February 28th, 2017|New Features, News|0 Comments

New Features and Enhancements

Nothing earth shattering in this update, but there are a few notable items that will help make life easier for some property managers.

Channel manager commissions can now be passed to owners

Many PMs use channels like Booking.com and Expedia.com as a source of new business.   The channels have substantial commission rates which they assess to the PM.   Many PMs wish to pass those fees on to the owner via the owner statement.   That is now possible!

The commission rate being charged by the channel must be entered withing Settings > Integrations > Channel Commissions.

Next there is a setting within the property management module for each owner that must be set to allow the commissions to pass through to the owner statement.  Keep in mind Lodgix charges an additional 2% for Booking.com and Expedia.com reservations, that 2% will be added to whatever commission rate you define for each channel.

There is also a new Channel Commission Report which will show all channel commissions for all properties for any given period.

Invoice fees can now be included as commissionable revenue on owner statements

Previously PM commissions could only be assessed on rental charges.  Now there is a new option within the setup of each fee or service to allow a commission to be assessed on it.

Area filter added to the calendar tape

For PMs with larger numbers of properties we had a couple requests to allow filtering by areas.  This feature has been added to the internal calendar tape.

Fees and services can now be designated as internal fees

Occasionally there are fees which a PM might want to assess a guest after the booking.  These fees are not meant to be viewable by guests when booking online. In our previous implementation there were only options for a fee to be “mandatory, optional or a pet fee”.  Now there is a new option to denote a fee as being as “Internal” fee.  When a fee is set to “Internal” that fee will not be displayed during the online booking process, it will only be available to the PM within the Lodgix invoice.

Please edit each of your existing fees of you need to denote them as being “Internal” fees.

I hope these new features make your management life a little easier!

Sometime within the next 10 days or so I hope to be writing about the launch of a significant new feature – the GUEST PAYMENT PORTAL.   That’s right, no more calling guests to update their credit card, just send them a payment request and the guest can go online and pay a balance, update their credit card, etc..  It’s coming!!  There’a little more fun stuff that will be included in that release, so stay tuned!

By | 2017-01-20T14:37:30+00:00 January 20th, 2017|New Features|0 Comments