By The Hospitable Team
With more than 6 million active listings in 200+ countries, Airbnb is one of the biggest online marketplaces that connect property owners who want to earn extra income and travelers who prefer to stay in the comfort of someone else’s home during their trips.
Owning an Airbnb can be a profitable side hustle. But does Airbnb have an affiliate program so you can join it and take advantage of the platform’s popularity? Airbnb used to offer an affiliate program, which was popular among travel bloggers and influencers in the hospitality niche, but unfortunately, they shut it down at the end of March 2021.
In this blog, we’ll talk about what happened to the Airbnb affiliate program and look at some alternatives you can try to earn money by promoting accommodation options.
You may also want to check out our blog article to discover Airbnb hacks that can help make the hosting process much easier.
Airbnb Affiliate Program: How Did It Work?
The Airbnb Associates program was launched in May 2020. It allowed anyone with an online audience to make money by promoting stays, experiences, or hosting on Airbnb. Travel bloggers and social media influencers who referred stays earned 25 percent of the monthly guest fee for the first 500 bookings. Those who chose to refer to a host could earn no less than $40 for each new listing booked within the first 365 days of being listed.
But on March 31, 2021, Airbnb ended its affiliate program. The decision to close the Associates program came after the company announced a new marketing campaign to recruit more hosts to its platform.
Due to this, they expected that their sales and marketing expenses would be higher as a percentage of the overall revenue. So maybe they just couldn’t justify paying a hefty percentage to the bloggers and social media influencers who were part of the Airbnb affiliate program.
How Airbnb Hosts Can Earn Money with Referrals
Now, Airbnb has a referral program for vacation rental hosts who list their properties on Airbnb. You can earn extra money as a host by inviting your friends, neighbors, and colleagues to become hosts on Airbnb using your referral link or invitation.
Remember that referrals should only be shared with personal connections who will appreciate receiving such invitations. You should also educate referred hosts on how to start an Airbnb business and use the platform by pointing them to resources on the company’s website.
You’ll be rewarded when the referred host publishes a new listing and completes bookings for that listing within a certain timeframe. There is no limit to how many referrals you can make to your network, but you will get payment only for the first 25 referred hosts.
Participating in this program allows you to help grow the Airbnb community and earn some extra cash to make your business more profitable. And if you opt for vacation rental software like Hospitable, you can go one step further and make your business more efficient.
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Hospitable has comprehensive, advanced features and can help you manage almost every facet of your vacation rental business. That means you can even run your Airbnb remotely like Jason Wolohan and his wife, Rachel. With Hospitable, they can manage their STR property in the Smoky Mountains, Tennessee entirely remotely from Maryland, and are planning to expand their business throughout the US.
Airbnb Affiliate Program: The Best Alternatives
Now, the Airbnb affiliate program is over, but there are some good alternatives to it. You can consider signing up with them if you want to diversify your income sources and earn money with a travel blog on your site or using your profiles on social media platforms.
If you join Expedia Group’s affiliate program, you can earn additional revenue by linking to their promotions and inventory. You’ll receive access to all Expedia Group brands, including Vrbo, Hotels.com, stays, Abritel, and FeWo Direct.
You can use the company’s affiliate tools (trackable links, widgets, and site banners) to drive traffic to Expedia Group from your website or social platforms. You can earn up to 6% commission for every qualifying booking that is made through your site, link, or widget.
The commission ranges from 2% to 6% based on what you promote (vacation rental, hotel, flight, cruise, etc.) and differs by brand, site, and country. The information about commission amounts is available within the Affiliate Dashboard under Key Commercial Terms, but you are required to sign in to access this page.
With a presence in more than 220 countries and 28 million accommodation listings, Booking.com is a giant in the short-term rental world. It has an affiliate program with a progressive commission structure, which you can join if you register on their website.
After your application is approved, you can start promoting Booking.com’s offerings on your website or blog using your unique affiliate link and earn a commission on every booking made through your business.
The commission rate you earn is between 25% and 40% of the commission that Booking.com receives for each booking. It is based on the number of bookings you generate each month. The more bookings you drive, the higher your commission share percentage is.
You will be paid monthly if you have earned at least 100 EUR. If you don’t reach this amount in one month, your balance will continue until the following month.
Affiliate marketing offers a flexible and rewarding way to earn money online while promoting products and services that align with your interests and expertise. Although the Airbnb affiliate program ended, it doesn’t mean that you can’t earn money with a travel blog or social media channels while sharing recommendations on vacation rentals and other travel-related services.
There are some good alternatives that you can start using to boost your income. But remember that joining an affiliate program is more than just sharing a link. It’s about creating quality content that resonates with your target audience and strategically promoting vacation rental offerings.
Inside the Airbnb bubble, it’s easy to think that it exists as an isolated island devoid from any competition in the outside world.
However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
You need to build and implement a consistent Airbnb marketing strategy to set your business apart from the competition and attract more guests. In this blog post, we’ll talk about effective marketing techniques that you can use to reach more customers and maximize your bookings.
Many people think that they must own property first before building an Airbnb business. That’s not true thanks to rental arbitrage. Through this business model, you can still become an Airbnb host even if you don’t own a house or apartment. We’re about to tell you how to run the rental arbitrage business efficiently.