Running an Airbnb without a dynamic pricing tool is like selling your car without looking up the blue book value. In other words, you’d be guessing at its value.
Airbnb pricing tools give you an in-depth view of the market you’re involved in and help determine exactly what your rental is worth on a seasonal basis and what days you can boost your rates and ultimately boost your income.
I took the guesswork out of finding the right pricing tool by comparing three major pricing programs by services offered, ease of use, data sources, and cost to the owner. These four factors should give you an overall idea as to whether a pricing tool is right for you.
What are the best Airbnb pricing tools available for hosts?
I’ll go through all of the options for each of these platforms below. The chart below encapsulates my findings and you can read below for further details…
|PRICING PLATFORM:||WHEELHOUSE||BEYOND PRICING||PRICELABS|
|SERVICES OFFERED||-10+ Pricing Modes |
-Dynamic Pricing Algorithms
-Dynamic Pricing Algorithm
|-Multiple Channel Listings |
-Dynamic Pricing Algorithm
|EASE OF USE||-Chat & Email Communication Available |
-Good introductory information.
-Platform is well explained and easy to use
|-Only a Few Guides Available |
Good Search Feature
-No Chat Option
|-Comprehensive Learning Guides & Videos |
-Chat and Email Offered
-Detailed Pricing Layout and a Bit Complicated
|DATA SOURCES||-Historic/ Upcoming |
|-Days of the Week |
-Your Property’s Rental History
|-Historic Local Data |
-Projected Rental Supply & Demand
|COST TO OWNER|
-30 Day Free Trial
-1% of Nightly Rate (1-9 Listings)
-.75% of Nightly Rate (10+ Listings)
-30 Day Free Trial
-1% of Nightly Rate
| -30 Day Free Trial |
-Set Price: Billed per Listing/ Month
-$19.99/ month for 1 Listing
–See PriceLabs for Entire List of Pricing Options
What is a Smart Pricing Tool and How Does it Work?
A dynamic pricing tool is a program that looks at your rental history and compares it with outside data. This data can come from a variety of sources but, all pricing tools compare your information with the information provided by other, similar rentals in the area to develop an ideal price point for your rental property.
You can check out all of our Recommended Airbnb Tools HERE >>
Additional data is used as well, and this is where different pricing tools can become very different. Anything from local hotel information, seasonal changes, local celebrations, or even a college home game can change the ideal price point for your rental and different pricing tools use different data points to develop a recommendation.
Other factors that can set pricing tools apart include availability in your area, ease of use, features offered, and the cost to the owner. Pricing tools also give you the ability to track data associated with your rental so both the tool and you can mine the data for future pricing decisions.
Take a look at the three great services listed below and see if any are right for your rental investments.
Check Out This Rental Recon Article: Airbnb Essentials: 75+ Items Every Host Should Have For Guests
Wheelhouse is available in almost all US markets, and even options across the globe. Their pricing tool uses “conservative,” “aggressive,” and “recommended” pricing models to simplify the overall process for their clients but, you can customize the base price and maximum price which changes the recommendation.
There are also ten other adjustments you can make to pricing models including last-minute discounts to fill beds or adjustments for local special events.
The Wheelhouse platform is simple to use, and has great customer service to back you up. Their "conservative", "aggressive", and "recommended" pricing strategies are easy to understand and implement for your listings.
- Integrates with Airbnb, Trip Advisor & More
- Great Customer Service
- Easy to Use Platform
- Straight-Forward Percentage- Based Pricing
- Doesn't Integrate with VRBO/ HomeAway
- Might Price Your Listing Higher than Market Allows
Wheelhouse uses many charts and graphics to show rental performance over different criteria, making data research easy. They are also strong in customer service. I tested each pricing tool on how responsive they were when contacted and Wheelhouse gave me an immediate response near midnight on a Monday.
Check Wheelhouse Pricing HERE.
When searching on airhostsforum.com, Wheelhouse was generally well thought of. One complaint centered on how often you had to save uploaded or inputted information for it to become permanent. The other complaints mentioned that the suggested prices were too high for a certain weekend, etc.
Beyond Pricing is available in over 7,000 cities worldwide. This company serves most major cities in North America – but, like Wheelhouse, rural areas and medium and small cities are not covered without a large vacation rental market. Between the three pricing tools covered here, Beyond Pricing currently offers services in the most rental markets.
Most of Beyond Pricing’s function occurs on the Dashboard and Calendar. You can manually change the pricing recommendations directly on the calendar though they strongly encourage you to use their pricing.
This pricing tool is the simplest tool to use but is also the most limited in functionality. Beyond Pricing uses a composite measurement called the “Health Score” for determining how your property is performing in its market.
This score is marked with red, yellow, and green – red being the worst health and green best health. Compared to the wealth of information given by the other two pricing tools, this seems a little elementary for the savvy consumer.
Beyond Pricing only uses email for contacting clients, so if you want immediate assistance with rental pricing issues, this may not be the best pricing tool.
Check Beyond Pricing Rates HERE:
Beyond Pricing was also cited as a satisfactory pricing tool. It was noted, however, that only a select group of rental owners had access to more than one pricing tool in their area, so they tended to use what was available rather than have the ability to compare tools. The “Health Meter” was not seen as useful for those who mentioned it but the rest of the pricing tool was considered a great product.
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PriceLabs has the most customizable pricing tool with the largest capacity to analyze your rental data. You can view statistics for revenue, booking rates, the average price per booking and much more. PriceLabs is designed to manage large amounts of bookings for property managers as well as smaller, individual rentals.
Pricelabs is more complicated to use than Beyond Pricing or Wheelhouse, but the data mined from your rental and the surrounding community gives you wonderful insight into the correct pricing for your rental.
I do have to warn you that each time I attempted to chat with a PriceLabs employee I received messages that they were offline and to try emailing them. I find that the inability to contact a company can dampen my enthusiasm for their product.
I found that those who use PriceLabs are satisfied with the pricing results and report higher revenue than before they used it. There were issues with the expense of the program and its availability.
I found PriceLabs to be the best-designed tool for pricing your rental. The data points are great and those who use PriceLabs seem to really love the program and its ability to create a dynamic pricing platform year-round. That said, between communication issues, a larger price tag, and their limited availability; PriceLabs may not be the best fit for your rental, depending on your situation.
Beyond Pricing has great availability but was a little too simple in scope. The data used isn’t as sophisticated as the other two companies and a “Health Meter” isn’t the best way to track an investment’s performance. If I give a company a portion of my revenue, I want to gain that back in a larger profit and insight into my rental market. I feel Wheelhouse better fulfills that mission.
I find myself recommending Wheelhouse. They’re the only company that I could chat with at any time, and they have enough great tools to make informed pricing decisions without so many options that their user would be overwhelmed.
Wheelhouse has the user support structure needed to get your properties uploaded and running efficiently. The education tools are well designed and include video, manuals, and an efficient search menu.