10 Replies Latest reply: Jan 9, 2019 8:05 PM by jeanhalle RSS

    How are cancel metrics determined?

    higherground Contributor

      I need some clarification homeaway_community_manager

       

      I have NEVER cancelled a paid booking yet I now have a 8% cancel metric. I had 2 situations that could have contributed to a cancel metric but neither seem valid.

       

      1. Accidental Entering of an Inquiry as a Reservation with NO PAYMENT:

      I had a spam request for flexible dates and I accidentally entered the inquiry as a reservation. No first Payment or second payment was paid. I was cleaning up my calendar for my cleaning team and removed the "booking". The VRBO system generated a number of emails indicating that the reservation had been cancelled. This is confusing to me since no payment was ever made so how can there be a cancellation?

       

      2. Request To Book - I recently had a RTB from a guest for September Long Weekend. He paid for 1 pet as part of payment but did not mention the pet it in his booking request. I followed up with an email to confirm breed etc and found out he was planning on bringing 2 dogs. We clearly indicate only 1 dog allowed in our house rules. Because I did not want to decline the booking I sent back a revised quote including a damage deposit and explained only 1 dog would be allowed. He did not confirm the booking as they wanted a home that would take both dogs. The RTB now shows up as a cancelled reservation in my Inbox. I'm not sure why this is a cancelled reservation since the RTB was in violation of my house rules and I did not think I should have to decline and be dinged for not accepting the booking. So I revised the booking quote but now it shows as cancelled.

       

      So I need to know how are cancel metrics determined because neither of these situations should apply but one of them has because I have a 8% cancel rate and I have never cancelled for a paid confirmed guest/booking.

        • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
          margaret CommunityAmbassador

          Well unfortunately both these situations are most likely causing your 8% cancellation rate. When you "removed the booking" to clean up your calendar I believe that would count as an owner cancellation. In the RTB situation, you should have accepted then told the guest he would have to initiate the cancellation to receive a refund. Yes, I know this sounds ridiculous but this is the way it must be done currently to avoid being penalized in the metrics. I hope at some point HA/VRBO will see how ridiculous this is, certainly not a good booking experience for the guests and will create a system for owners to cancel penalty free. I will not hold my breath waiting but I can hope.

            • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
              higherground Contributor

              Thanks. I agree this must be changed. Situation #1 is not a booking and if there is no payment then it should not be considered a cancellation. Situation #2 sets the owner and guest up for a very poor user experience. I should not have to accept a booking that violates my rules (too many pets) and then tell the guest they can't stay and must cancel. Bad, bad, bad experience for all.

            • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
              homeaway_community_manager HomeAway Employee

              Hi higherground,

               

              When partners cancel, it can impact their ranking. When travelers cancel through their traveler account, it does not impact the partner’s ranking and is not reflected in ranking metrics.  If you have more specific questions about your account, please contact Customer Support.

               

              We’re continuing to work on improving the data and metrics within the ranking metrics page so you have the data you need to make your business decisions. Please stay tuned.


              Thank you.


              Erinn

              HomeAway Community Manager

                • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
                  higherground Contributor

                  Hi Erinn - thanks for the response. Yes this definitely needs to be improved. Metrics should be based on real bookings. A Request to Book is not confirmed until the Partner ACCEPTS it.  No cancellation should be applied if the guest requests to book in violation of house rules. And removing unpaid bookings should be allowed within the dashboard. If there is no payment - there is no booking. Removing pending bookings or declining unacceptable requests are a normal part of managing a business and  these should be conducted  penalty free. It is disappointing that partners are being evaluated on a system so poorly designed for both owners and guests. I look forward to the improvements and hope that my ranking doesn't suffer too much from false metrics.

                  • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
                    jeanhalle New Member

                    Please explain how including cancellations in the ranking metrics provides useful data for the traveler or owner.  In reading the posts and based on personal experience this metric is greatly flawed and should be eliminated or fixed. It would be logical that good customer service doesn't make the customer do things the owner can do. It makes no sense to reward a pre-approved traveler for telling you their intention is not to book by telling them to please cancel their reservation (do more work). Further, it makes no sense for an owner to show space as booked when a traveler has indicated they don't intend to stay. Perhaps, the metric needs to be refined between booked reservations and pre-approved reservations. In addition, the popup message before cancellation is processed should remind owners that cancellations will impact ratings and that the preferred process is to ask guests to cancel. Finally, customer service should be empowered to either reverse cancellations so that owners can request the traveler cancel or to eliminate the ding from the metrics if the record of messages indicates the cancellation was at the traveler's request.

                      • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
                        homeaway_community_manager HomeAway Employee

                        Hi jeanhalle,

                         

                        This post is many months old and the issues with the cancellation metric have been resolved for quite some time.  The purpose of the cancellation metric is to measure owner initiated cancellations. Travelers need to be able to trust when they book a property that the owner is not going to cancel on them. This metric is important and you have control over by not cancelling reservations for a reason not covered by cancellation waivers.  If a traveler books your property and then decides not to stay, then they'll need to take the steps required to cancel the reservation.  It's like if you went to the store and purchased an item and then decided you didn't want it, you'd have to go back to the store and return it to get your money back. The store is going to proactively refund you just because you say you don't want it.

                         

                        We appreciate the rest of the feedback you provided.

                         

                        Thank you.

                         

                        Erinn

                        HomeAway Community Manager

                          • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
                            jeanhalle New Member

                            Erinn,

                             

                            Thank you for your response. I see your point when a traveller is expecting to visit based on a confirmed paid booking.; however, like other community members, I think there is a difference between a paid booking and an inquiry.  Also, I am guessing customer service can't be given permissions to reverse a cancellation because the system programming doesn't support this action. Regarding the suggestion on the pop-up, this is an easy fix.

                             

                            I made a mistake last year and for a year I remembered to process in this cumbersome way, that is, ask the traveller once they provide notice to cancel themselves. This time I can only say I had a momentary brain fart, but boy is it annoying because it will now be part of my metrics for one year! Is there a way to count only the type of transaction you are concerned about, that is a paid booking cancellation. To use your analogy, you have to purchase something in a store to return it, you can't simply put it on hold.

                             

                            Thanks for your consideration,

                            Jean

                      • Re: How are cancel metrics determined?
                        georgygirl1955 Senior Contributor

                        I just found this on my account, now that the new Metrics allows us to view the cancelled bookings.

                        I am being "dinged" by a guest cancellation that is bringing down my metrics. At least I can tell why now.

                         

                        Here it is - Guest requested the cancel, but my metrics got affected anyway =

                         

                         

                        • Thank you Mrs. xxxxxxx  for your understanding for my request for a full refund at this moment. As I mentioned we are still looking and we are not counting yours out completely yet. Thank you again.

                          Thu 1/4/2018 11:10 PM EST
                            • You
                            Payment Refunded

                            Payment Refunded

                            Thu 1/4/2018 11:03 PM EST
                        • Reservation CancelledThu 1/4/2018 11:03 PM EST

                        Payment 2 cancelled

                        Payment 2 cancelled

                        Thu 1/4/2018 11:03 PM EST

                        I will look

                        forit.

                        Thu 1/4/2018 10:37 PM EST

                         

                        You please put your cancellation request in tonight in order to get the full refund.