What is the future of data benchmarking in the rental industry?

Worldwide: ShortTermRentalz spoke to data providers AirDNA and See Transparent to see how they employ data benchmarking in their firms and what the future holds for it.


AirDNA CEO Scott Shatford spotted the potential of the short-term rental industry back in 2012. It was after unexpectedly losing his job and buying a plane ticket to the other side of the world that a neighbour suggested he list his home on fledgling home-sharing platform Airbnb to cover the costs of the trip.

After just a few weeks, Shatford was earning far more from renting his place in Los Angeles than he could spend at the street food stands of Bangkok. It was then that he realised the extraordinary potential of vacation rentals for hosts, small businesses, as well as the large players in tourism and hospitality.

Shatford said: “When I returned to the US and considered launching a short-term rental business, I noticed a huge lack of knowledge on how to run a vacation rental unit successfully. I started to think about how I could draw on my past experience running operations at a management consultancy firm to create a product that would plug that information gap.”

Shatford launched a website, Renting Your Place, and wrote a guide to becoming a savvy short-term rental entrepreneur, The Airbnb Expert’s Playbook, which has since been downloaded half a million times by users across the globe.

The e-book’s success prompted Scott to pitch the idea to his co-founders – technical whizz Doug Jardine and Kellogg alumnus Tom Caton – and AirDNA was launched from Shatford’s garage in Santa Monica in 2015.

AirDNA is now the most-trusted independent source of vacation rental data in the industry. By tracking the daily performance of all ten million plus Airbnb and HomeAway/Vrbo listings in over 80,000 markets worldwide, AirDNA offers unmatched insights into the growth, seasonal demand and revenue of short-term rentals globally.

AirDNA’s interactive dashboard MarketMinder crunches AI-powered reservation information to provide intel on revenue, occupancy and forward supply and demand. Used by hosts and vacation rental managers, MarketMinder helps its subscribers to optimise their listings, benchmark against competitors and price right during compression events.

Short-term rental investors and hedge funds rely on AirDNA demand data to identify up-and-coming markets and neighbourhoods. Tourism boards utilise high-level reports, and metrics such as traveller origin and booking lead time, to market their destinations more effectively to the right customer segments.

Shatford said: “At AirDNA, our aim is to democratise the lodging industry. We want to make cutting-edge data and insights accessible to every vacation rental business worldwide, both big and small, to help them grow and succeed in their market.”

For more information, visit the AirDNA website here.


See Transparent:

Transparent, based in Spain, is the global leader in business intelligence for the short-term rental industry.

Since 2016, Transparent has been building analytics products to enhance short-term rental property managers’ knowledge. Through a combination of proprietary data aggregation and data science and aggregation of publicly available data, Transparent develops insight on market conditions, such as supply growth, demand patterns, pricing changes, and property manager activities.

Transparent has the largest data set for the market and is a pioneer within the industry.

The short-term rental market is very fragmented and it is difficult to acquire data.

Transparent continuously tracks more than 26 million listings worldwide and this data powers products which allows hosts and property managers to make smarter, fact-based decisions in the short-term rental industry. Property managers rely on Transparent’s benchmarking tools to understand forward-looking demand and prices in the market and, then, make informed pricing decisions.

Transparent’s Rate & Demand Dashboards allow property managers to ensure they are optimising their rates and staying up to date with their market. It provides them with all the necessary data of the market in one place, enabling them to decide on the best pricing strategy for their short-term rental business.

With Transparent, property managers can easily compare daily rates against competitors, analyse future occupancy and spot market trends as soon as possible.

CEO Pierre Becerril said: “The vacation rental industry used to suffer from its opacity. Real estate investors and property managers lacked the tools to measure and size the opportunities in their market.

“This is the problem that we solve with Transparent and why we have created a suite of tools to help our industry thrive with data,” he added.

For more information, visit the Transparent website here.