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Posts Tagged National Association of Realtors

Are You Drowning in A Sea of Online Data?

by Rebecca Chandler

Online real estate content is abundant and, as a real estate agent or broker, you and your listings may be, literally, drowning in a sea of online data.  Total web traffic to real estate site estimates range from around 60 million per month to over 100 million.

Counting that traffic is an imperfect science. Zillow estimates their own traffic at over 60 million in July 2013.  Compete.com estimates Zillow traffic at 20 million per month and Alexa at 15 million.

Trulia touts 31 million per month. Compete estimates their traffic at 13 million and Alexa at 8 million.

However, the bottom line is that, according to the National Association of REALTORS®,  only a little over 5 million homes will be sold this year.

What does that tell you?  Not everyone shopping on a real estate site is a home buying or selling consumer (at least not this year) and that those who shop real estate websites go to multiple sites and are counted over and over and over.

•    Home shoppers visit multiple sites – many in the same session – so they are multiplied over and over in estimates

•    Many are not shopping for real estate agent listed homes for sale.  Many sites include rentals, apartments, FSBO’s, sold properties, neighborhood information, etc., etc.,

•    Many visitors are sellers, agents, or tire kickers – researching the market

It’s not surprising.  Everyone researches purchases online.  We research everything from the best new car to purchase to the restaurants we choose.  But, that also means that you and your listings are just sitting and waiting and hoping that the rightconsumer with the ability and likelihood to do business with you will stumble upon you , and then make the decision to contact you.  You most certainly should get the widest exposure for your listings and your brand on the web – BUT it’s a passive approach and web only is not a real marketing strategy for you or your home seller – and every agent in town does it, so you don’t stand out at all.

Keep this in mind . . .

•    Advertising and marketing activities generate leads.

  • Buyer leads for your current listings and any other homes for sale.

  • Seller leads for future listings.

  • Your marketing campaign for the home is as much for you and your business as for your client’s home.

  • Any investment you make should also generate more business for you.

•    It’s a WIN-WIN.

In today’s multi-media world, we shop on the web, on our phones, and offline – all at the same time.  Effective marketing strategies use all available media to create demand – everywhere and in any way the consumer chooses to interact.

Your challenge is to interact with your target audience in the places and manner in which they choose.  This means using a printed magazine to interrupt their day in the places they live, work , shop and play.  Use your ad to drive them to find more information about your and your listings on the web or their mobile device.  Now – they are engaged.

Or –  have you reconsidered direct mail recently?  Today, using services likeTREBStore.com, you can target your mailing to not only a geographic area, but also through demographic filters – like time in the home, income, or age.   You know the profile of those you are trying to reach as buyers or sellers.  Going specifically to those people will help you generate leads – much more effectively than waiting on them to find you in a sea of online data.

To learn more, view our recorded webinar – “Is Web Dead?”

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Are Today’s Buyers on Information Overload?

by Rebecca Chandler

DawnWellsHas this ever happened to you? You are at dinner with friends and the conversation rambles to some obscure trivia question such as – “Did Mary Ann on Gilligan’s Island have a job?”Hmmmm…

Or “Who is leading the MLB Eastern Division for the National League?” Find Out!

Or “How many days left of Shark Week? Is it really just a week?

Everyone reaches for their smart phone to look it up.

We have become so accustomed to the immediacy of information that the slightest delay in satisfying our curiosity can become painful. (You really do want to know if Mary Ann had a job, don’t you?) And, the abundance of available information can sometimes be overwhelming. You start looking at Mary Ann from Gilligan’s Island and then you learn she has a cookbook on Amazon, was arrested for marijuana in 2008 (the charges were dropped), and she had an extensive acting career other than Gilligan’s Island.

The point is that the immediacy of an abundance of information make finding out whatever you want to know whenever you want to know it however you want to find it – pretty easy. But it’s also easy to become distracted and overwhelmed by non-related and non-relevant information. (What was the question, again?)

Let’s apply this to real estate. There are literally thousands (and thousands) of real estate websites. comScore estimates that the real estate sites they track have in total over 65 million unique users per month. And yet, the National Association of REALTORS® estimates that a littleover 5 million homes will be sold this year.

The large difference between shoppers and sales are attributable to online surfing trends and to the abundance of real estate websites in general.

For example, most home shoppers visit multiple websites – sometimes in the same session – going to page after page and site after site – becoming easily distracted from their original mission or question. And there are thousands of sites to visit, thus multiplying each shopper over and over to reach the 65 million shoppers. There are not more shoppers. They are shopping more sites. This means that agents who rely solely on web exposure as a marketing vehicle for their listed homes for sale are, literally, drowning in a sea of online data, waiting for a potential buyer to search and find the home. And while home sellers certainly should expect their home to be made available to the wave of online shoppers, they should also expect a much more robust advertising campaign for their home from an agent to whom they are paying a commission.

More like – a very direct path to a specific property presented to those with the ability and likelihood to buy the property with a benefit statement, a strong call to action, and a lead capture mechanism.

We call that advertising.

Targeted advertising programs using multi-media platforms have become readily available, easily executable and extremely affordable for today’s real estate professionals – at hundreds of dollars per month for basic marketing services for all their listings – including print, web, mobile, social, direct mail, corporate relocation, text codes, single property mobile websites – and more – meaning, that depending on the number of listings the agent has, the price per listing could be quite low.

And, better marketed homes sell more quickly and for a better price and everybody wins.

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National Association of REALTORS 2010 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers Reveals Winning Trends.

What are the winning qualities consumers look for in real estate professionals?

How do top agents continue to win?

What are the winning qualities home buyers and sellers look for in a real estate professional?  The recent release of the National Association of REALTORS Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers for 2010 reveals that even with access to an abundance of information online, consumers still value the services offered by a full-service agents and brokers.

According to the stats – Here’s what  sellers want most from a full service agent –

  1. Help me price the home competitively – 22%
  2. Help find a buyer for the home – 21%
  3. Help seller market the home to potential buyers – 20%
  4. Help sell the home in a specific time frame – 19%

In today’s market place, sellers rely even more on real estate professionals to help them price their homes as competitively and realistically as possible.   Most understand that their home has most likely,  lost value in the past few years and understandably, want to sell for as much as they can.

Consumers also know that exposing their home to the largest universe of buyers possible means they stand a better chance of selling quickly and for a higher price.  That’s why agents who go above and beyond to actually market the home versus just posting it on the web on free  sites are preferred by sellers.

Also, according to the study, buyers want a real estate professional to  —

  1. Help them to find the right home – 51%
  2. Help negotiate the terms – 14%
  3. Help with price negotiations – 12%
  4. Help with the paperwork – 10%

Even though home shopping on their own has never been easier, buyers are still looking to the agent to help them find the right home and a professional agent to help them through the process.    Agents who presents themselves as honest, caring,  knowledgeable, and full-service stand a better chance of engaging buyers.

Even though the market has changed and technology has changed, consumers’ expectations remain consistent.   Sellers still want their home priced well and marketed well with the belief that means a faster, more profitable  sell and buyers are still looking for a professional agent to guide them through the process.

Top agents have always known this and they make sure they promote these qualities to both buyers and sellers.  That’s why they continue to win the business and confidence of consumers.

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