Long names are hard to remember and they lack the powerful message that most of short names have. Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia understood this, therefore, as soon as the opportunity arose, they bought out Airbnb.com.
Criteria for an ideal domain name:
- short (maximum length - 12–15 characters);
- easy to remember (it is desirable that the name consist of two syllables);
- not associated with other brands and domain names;
- repeats or beats the brand name;
- “.com” domain zone (top-level domain, or TLD).
If you can’t think of a domain name yourself, use Namestation.com or its equivalent. The Namestation algorithm generates random names based on a list of keywords. At the same time, the site shows which of the generated names are free and which are already taken.
An example of generating a domain name based on the words "rental" and "housing". Two names are taken. Source of the image
If you like some name, but it is already taken, you may be able to buy it. The price may be different - from a couple hundred to several million dollars. View the approximate cost or find another option for purchase can be on sites:
- Afternic BuyDomains;
#3 Develop the concept of the site
To create a site like Airbnb, it is important to determine what we really mean. Here are the main things that define such a site:
- P2P transactions. The site brings private individuals who donate their housing in the short-term, with those who wish to rent someone else's. This may be a room, apartment, bungalow, cottage or any other room in which you can live and which meets certain criteria of safety and comfort.
- Significance of location. On sites like Airbnb, the supplier and the customer must be physically close to each other in order to share the values. Search by using filters and maps.
- Reviews and reputation system. The parties should be able to leave feedback about each other after the conclusion of the transaction (completion of the transaction). Thus, you can create a reputation system that will help to toss out unreliable counterparties.
- Booking management. If the site offers rental services, it will need a booking management system so that landlords can indicate the availability of the service on a particular day, and tenants can book accommodation for the dates they need.
- Online payments through the website. The platform should have the tools to book and pay for services through the site. It is convenient and safe, and also allows you to charge a transaction fee.
- Delay and retention of funds. Protect users from fraud, for example, from fraudulent ads for renting out someone else’s housing.
In addition to these things, the concept of the site should also include the development of wireframe
, design and interface elements. Usually, everyone tries to make the site as close as possible to the design of Airbnb, but this is a bad idea - why use something similar to Airbnb, if there is an original Airbnb. Better to create a unique solution, as did Booking.com, Wimdu, FlipKey and 9flats.
#4 Choose an approach to development
If you have a domain and concept ready, the next step is to develop the site
directly. And here you will have two options: use a ready-made script / theme / template or hire a professional developer
. This is a very important decision, so consider both options in more detail.
Individual solution. Outsourcing development is a great option if you need to create a website with unique features, technologies and design. You can find a development company on Clutch.co, Appfutura, Goodfirms.co, Extract.co and Adnify. There is a brief description of the companies, contact details and customer reviews. You can also search for developers on the professional social network LinkedIn and on the Quora and Reddit questionnaire sites.
Ready-made solutions. WordPress themes, scripts, and clones of the Airbnb website speed up and simplify development. But they have significant limitations on setting up the functionality and design. The most popular WordPress themes for creating websites like Airbnb are Listable, Listify, ClassyAds, SpotFinder, and Love Travel Theme. Among the scripts are in demand Dropinn, Airhotels, BistroStays, Burrow, Renters and Inout EasyRooms.
#5 Create useful content
Content is articles, pictures, and videos. Airbnb was unusually successful because it showed apartments and rooms in a unique way with a lot of additional content. The company employs people to take professional photos and write relevant texts.
Beautiful photos attract people by forcing them to click on an ad and study it. Source of the image
Thanks to high-quality photos, people can imagine themselves in the apartment they are planning to rent. This enhances the positive user experience and contributes to an increase in conversion, which in turn increases the site profit
On Airbnb, there are not only ads, but also articles with tips, instructions, and stories from people about their experiences and impressions. Source of the image
also contribute to user engagement. Therefore, hire specialists to write many different articles:
- about the cities where your landlords rent housing;
- about the correct choice of apartment and the nuances of this process;
- about tourist routes and attractions;
- about other things that will be interesting to users.
Articles can be written by your users. To do this, enter a special section and hire people who will view sent by readers and, if necessary, edit texts with the consent of the authors.
#6 Hire employees
Modern business is a team type of "sport" where loners are doomed to failure, no matter how talented and assertive they are. Therefore, determine in advance the staff, management structure and salary for each position. This is necessary to calculate the project budget, and also helps to understand when and who to hire.
Where to look for employees:
If you are planning to hire copywriters to fill the site with content, then this should be done before launching the project. The situation is similar with the support service. However, if you are planning over time to attract venture capital or to conduct an IPO, then you will need people for management positions that you should hire after the launch of the site.
What posts need to fill for an IPO (according to the method of Mequoda):
- Chief Executive Officer (CEO);
- Chief Operating Officer (COO);
- Chief Marketing Officer (CMO);
- Chief Content Officer (CCO);
- Chief Development Officer (CDO);
- Chief Technology Officer (CTO);
- Chief Strategy Officer (CSO);
- Chief Analytics Officer (CAO).
#7 Schedule a successful launch
This event is necessary in order to create noise around your project. But it cannot simply be appointed and await “grandiose success.” Launch site need to be prepared:
- inform about the event the maximum number of people by advertising on social networks, on specialized sites and, possibly, in the media and on the radio;
- use marketing influence - posts and videos of famous bloggers;
- prepare special offers for the first customers - promotions, discounts, bonuses, gifts that will attract potential customers;
- develop a marketing policy and prepare a brief history about you and your website - the mission, goals, advantages and target audience.
To track the success of an event, set several goals to achieve with it. What to seek from users:
- booking is the main goal.
- comments, feedback and suggestions;
- registration on the site.
Use Google Analytics to track goals and conversion rates. Good advice for increasing conversions is to simplify interaction with the site and remove distractions, such as unnecessary images, links to other sites and social networking buttons. These elements distract users from the main goal - room reservation. Place social media icons away from the booking button in the upper right corner (standard practice).
How much is a website like Airbnb costs