Customer type: Property Manager
Region: Europe – Greece
Products: Dynamic Pricing, Portfolio Analytics, Market Dashboards
Number of Listings: 100+
PMS used: HostAway
For Nasos Apostolopoulos – Director of WelcomeHost, pricing was a laborious time consuming manual process. Over the summer of 2022, Nasos realised that despite having high occupancy rates, he was still losing considerable income. He was certain that this was because he was drastically underpricing his properties owing to his manual method of researching, predicting and updating prices. It was then that he decided to go ahead with a pricing software.
Six months into using PriceLabs, Nasos has been able to;
- Accurately set higher prices while still maintaining high reviews
- Seamlessly integrate with his PMS – Hostaway and sync pricing everyday
- Have clarity on his monthly spends with a transparent billing model
Located in Athens, Greece, WelcomeHost is a provider of short-stay furnished apartments and property management services. They have a mix of one, two and three bedroom apartments and villas, majority of which are in the tourist center of Athens with a few in Glyfada and Marousi districts.
Nasos Apostolopoulos, Director of WelcomeHost started his business in 2013. When the economic recession hit Greece, the company he worked for as a wholesale agent, wound down wholesale operations, choosing to focus purely on retail. At the time, a friend told Nasos about Airbnb. Nasos took a huge leap of faith and at substantial risk he and his wife rented two flats and ran it as an Airbnb, with practically a ‘zero-budget’. At the time, the business was not legal in Greece and everything from permits to taxes to disapproving neighbours were hardships that the couple had to endure. As Government rules and regulations started to change – legitimising his business, Nasos began expanding and now he and his team run 25+ of his own units and manage over 50 additional units.
“Pricing used to be a HUGE headache for me! When I had 20-25 flats, I did the pricing. But it was getting hard. Already this year, before I started using PriceLabs, I lost a lot of money. All through the summer – I know my pricing was definitely low. Thats when I decided to proceed with some software for pricing. I studied many options in the market and decided PriceLabs was the one for me. “– Nasos Apostolopoulos, Director of WelcomeHost
When Nasos was managing pricing manually – it was in his own words “a huge headache”. Once Nasos grew his portfolio from two listings to 20,30 listings, pricing had become a laborious process that involved a lot of ‘guesswork’ leading to expensive mistakes.
Nasos did his research through friends, reading reviews on review websites and by taking demos of pricing tools. It was then that he discovered PriceLabs and after evaluation decided it was the best solution for him, for reasons detailed below.
In the absence of an intelligent dynamic pricing software, Nasos would likely have had to hire a dedicated resource/employee at a substantial cost, and with the risk of pricing still being inaccurate and inefficient.
Challenge 1: Money lost due to inaccurate/low pricing
Nasos used to manually compare prices of neighbouring Airbnbs and accordingly set his prices. Nasos was extremely nervous to start using any pricing software. He was worried that the price recommendations would be too high – in turn affecting his reviews.
However, he found PriceLabs price recommendations and future recommendations accurate. These accurate recommendations ensured he wasn’t losing money by pricing his property too low, nor risking his reputation by pricing it too high – a win-win for him.
Challenge 2: Dynamic pricing tools with ambiguous cost & billing based on percentage of revenue
Nasos wasn’t keen on a tool that cost him a percentage of his revenues. He liked the pricing structure and cost effectiveness of PriceLabs. He started with a few listings and kept adding more to his PriceLabs account. The more properties he listed, the more cost effective it worked out for him. He liked this transparency where at all times he knew exactly what it would cost him to use the tool.
Nasos did his research through friends, reading reviews on review websites and by taking demos of pricing tools. It was then that he discovered PriceLabs and after evaluation decided it was the best solution for him as it;
- Is simple to use
- Integrates efficiently with his PMS
- Can be synced daily
Once introduced to PriceLabs, Nasos explored the 30-day free trial. It took Nasos about a week to get acquainted with all of the features. He liked that it was very simple to use and understand as compared to other softwares he had tried out.
It was a huge advantage that PriceLabs integrated smoothly with his PMS (Property Management System) – Hostaway his PMSand that prices could be synced daily.
How PriceLabs helps WelcomeHost set accurate prices
Nasos has been using PriceLabs for over 6 months. What began as a daily exploration of features and settings has now settled into a weekly check in. He began by configuring the software by importing listings and connecting to his PMS.
Nasos loves that he can put up his minimum, base and maximum price and allow the system to recommend prices based on his own minimum and maximum price limits. This helps him plan for the future and set pricing for dates well into the future. Apart from this the ability to configure discount pricing rules allow him to encourage both early bookings and last-minute deals.
His favourite feature is the ability to set gaps between days. By default he sets a 2 day minimum gap. Then at the beginning of each month, he goes and sees which ones he can open up as single days at a higher price. and also set up pricing for future dates.
He’s also been able to save time by grouping similar listings together by neighbourhood or type of listing etc. thereby applying customisations in bulk for groups of listings, rather than updating or setting each one individually.
Anothe reason that Nasos loves PriceLabs is the ability to make better forecasting decisions by customising settings to enable automation, event triggers, alerts, and market intelligence.
Nasos also utilises PriceLabs Portfolio Analytics to review and analyse his occupancy and rate performance by season, event, and day of week trends, thus giving him the opportunity to define and apply varying premiums for unit attributes during high and low demand periods
Last but not the least, Nasos appreciates that PriceLabs support services are have been quick, prompt and efficient.
Future for WelcomeHost
Nasos now feels confident about his pricing strategy and knows that he’s getting the best prices for his short-stay rentals. He now in-turn recommends PriceLabs to his friends in the industry and in his own words, the response from anyone who uses it is always “wow, it’s amazing.” He is looking forward to growing his portfolio and exploring PriceLabs’ Refer & Earn program to introduce other in his industry the hidden opportunities and potential of dynamic pricing.