New Trends of Journey
We believe that many of the new booking trends that emerge over the past year are here to stay. People are traveling to many more destinations than before. And when they travel, they’re staying longer. We believe these 2 categories of travel are in fact here to stay. And as a result, what we focused on are product innovations that support these new ways that people travel. You see many people have a greater freedom about where and when they travel, and we’ve improved our product to better meet their needs. Our new search products offer guests the flexibility that they want when planning and booking trips. And finally, we’re seeing more people around the world consider hosting. We ended Q2 with the largest number of active listings in Airbnb’s history.
Now as a reminder, our single priority in 2021 has been to prepare for the travel rebound. To do this, we’ve been perfecting the end-to-end experience of our core service. And this includes 4 themes: first, educating the world about hosting; second, recruiting more hosts; third, simplifying the guest journey; and finally, delivering world-class service. So let me just briefly give you an update on how we’re executing on each of these 4 areas.
So first, we’re educating the world about what makes Airbnb different, and that is hosting. In Q1, we launched our first large-scale marketing campaign in 5 years, Made Possible by Hosts, and we expanded this campaign in Q2. We’re educating guests about the benefits of being hosted, and we’re also inspiring more people to become hosts.
Now we continue to be really encouraged by the result of this campaign in terms of traffic, first-time bookers, interest in hosting and brand favorability. Second, we are recruiting more hosts, and we are setting them up for success. On May 24, just a few months ago, we launched a completely redesigned host onboarding flow that makes it simpler for anyone to start hosting. This new flow has made it faster to become a host, which has helped drive our listings growth in Q2.
Third, we are simplifying every part of the guest experience. On May 24, we expanded the tools for guests to offer more flexibility when they’re searching for a place to stay. We announced flexible dates, flexible destinations and flexible matching. And all 3 of these features are to support the new ways that guests are looking to plan and book trips.
And finally, whenever our host or guests need us, we must deliver world-class service. So we recently launched a redesigned Help Center. We’ve more than tripled our supported languages, and we’ve updated our safety resources. And all of it is to ensure that we are supporting our guests and hosts whenever they need us.
How trip search has changed
So Brian, as a follow-up to the product announcement that you had, I think this was late May when you hosted that session, and it seems like to me you’re giving consumers broader recommendations. And if this is really successful, hopefully, it’s something that they really didn’t know that they even really wanted.
So I know it’s probably really early, but anything you can share in terms of what their response has been? Are they delighted with what you’re showing them? Or do you still think you have some tinkering that you need to do?
Yes, Stephen — yes, Stephen, thanks. It’s a great question. Let me like preface this by saying the following. There’s been a major paradigm shift in how people search for travel on the Internet. Before the pandemic, the way search was on the Internet for travel was the vast, vast majority of people came to a website, a travel website, typically an OTA, and they would type in a location. They have a location in mind, and they go to date, and they check — type a date to check-in, and a date to check-out.
So this is really fixed search. People know where they’re going to go. With the pandemic, I think it’s safe to say the world is never going back to the way it was, and that means travel isn’t going back to the way it was. And the way travel is evolving is that people because they’re able to work more remotely, they’re more flexible.
And what we are seeing, Stephen, is that 40% of our guests have flexibility about where or when they travel. And to give you one example of one of the things we’ve done, flexible dates. We have a couple of flexible date features. We have a feature that you can tap, I’m flexible, and you can say I’m looking for a place for a weekend, a week or a month, sometime in the next few months. And what we have seen is with our flexible date feature, it’s being used more than 500 million times. This is a feature that’s been used 0.5 billion times since we launched this feature in the beginning of the year.
We’ve also seen a very big uptick in the use of flexible destinations as well, where people — if they’re flexible about where they travel, we can recommend them to where to go. Now these features are really important. The reason they’re really important isn’t just because this is the paradigm shift and how people are searching for travel, but it’s also important because this means that we can point demand to where we have supply. And this is a major, major shift for our business.
And so we are going to continue to tweak the products. When you have hundreds of millions of data points on a feature, you learn, and we’re continually innovating. But I will also just say that this is just the very beginning because our team is not going to rest on their laurels. We are working really, really hard to continue to offer more flexibility to guests and continue to be able to inspire them and point them to where we have available supply.
Did TAM Grow?
A couple of questions. You mentioned a lot of positive trends for the company. I wonder if you have any thoughts on the market opportunity or the TAM for alternative accommodations versus hotel nights, is that changing? And do you think alternative accommodations is growing? Maybe any thoughts also on your opportunity within hotel bookings. And then second, I’ll take a swing at this. Any updates on actual supply metrics like Hosts or active listings? Or is that something we’ll get once a year?
Sure. On the latter, on supply metrics, I think we’ve highlighted what’s really important. Remember that we do not need to grow supply one-to-one for revenue growth. And why is that? It’s because we have millions of listings all around the world. And what we need to do is have the right listing for the right guest at the right time. And as people continue to get more flexible on when and where they travel as we get better focusing those hosts on the flexible locations and dates that they have in mind, we’re going to get better at utilizing the supply we have all around the world.
But what we have highlighted is that when there is great demand in specific areas, and that was in North America and Europe nonurban, we are very effective at growing at supply, and that’s what we saw in Q2. We had some of the strongest growth of our supply specifically in the areas of our strongest areas of demand. And we do that both organically and then inorganically through all the actions that Brian talked about, about making inspiring hosts and what the benefits are being of hosted or being a host, talking to them about how they can make it easier for them to host and then having existing Hosts help new Hosts be successful. So those are all the ways that we’ll be driving it.
So I think we will be talking about listing infrequently as it is helpful to guide the overall direction of the business, but not as a routine measure because it’s not the primary driver of revenue growth. In terms of TAM for alternatives versus hotels, if you really think about Airbnb, it’s — we’re not just a travel company. We’re — if it’s all about travel and living. And really, any kind of stay, any kind of accommodation, really short of kind of a full year lease can be accommodated in Airbnb. And that’s what we’re seeing with the fact that we’re seeing such strong growth in stays of 28 days or longer. And that, that was 19% of nights in Q2.
And we highlighted in the letter the fact that even the nights of 7 days or longer were 50% of our nights. And so that is not hotels. Hotels average much lower, maybe 1 to 2 nights on average. We’re going to be 4-plus, and 50% of our nights were of 7 days or longer. So clearly, during this time period, we have taken share from traditional accommodations.
And I think that a lot of these changes that we’ve talked about on the call today, the increased flexibility of how people are traveling and living, I think that just actually increases the overall TAM of what Airbnb is able to address because if you’re going to be staying longer, if you’re going to have more flexibility, you’re much more likely to want to stay in a hosted Airbnb with the amenities that you have in Airbnb versus being in a hotel room.