The Biggest Real Estate Company is Embracing Technology — Are You?
One of the most prevalent conversations in the real estate industry today is how it’s transitioning to a more digital environment, which is having an impact on the traditional way of doing things in this business. In the last year, we’ve seen the growth of iBuyer websites, along with more agents utilizing technology to bring in more customers. Because of this, there’s a constant debate about how agents can compete with this technology, and that’s typically by embracing it. And, with more big-name real estate websites — like Keller Williams — setting their own example of this with their brand new, updated listings website and app, there’s no denying that if you can’t beat ‘em, you have to try and join ‘em.
Here’s how you can do the same:
Utilize Data to Your Advantage
Whether you’re business is digitally-focused or not, using data in any form is crucial to meeting the needs of your potential clients. As a real estate agent, it’s important to always be aware of what your clients are looking for. By looking at the housing trends for 2020, we can learn a lot about our potential buyers and what their needs are, especially compared to buyers from previous generations. According to Bautex Systems, in 2020, millenials are having many different requirements when it comes to finding their “dream home.” They are motivated buyers looking for “sustainable design, low maintenance, quiet sanctuary, and comfort.”
But, that’s just one source. As a real estate agent, the best way to embrace technology an appeal to potential buyers is to know who they are before they even walk in your door. Understanding the demographics not just on a regional scale but in the various neighborhoods where you work, can set you apart from other agents who aren’t doing their research first. Learn about who you are working with. Understand what homes they want to buy, at what cost, and give them listings and expert advice that they can’t refuse.
Say “Yes” to Supportive Software
Okay, so you understand the importance of collecting data, analyzing that data, and using that data to attract more clients. But, where do you even start? With so many data points to collect, it’s hard to know which information will actually be useful to you, and what will essentially be a waste of time. One way to get around this is by using more technology in your business life. Today, there are plenty of different software programs out there to help streamline the process of collecting data and making connections. Some of these CRM platforms include:
- Espresso Agent: Espresso Agent is a software allows agents to seek out expired listings and FSBO listings, which is an area of the market that many agents are not tapping into. Using this software, you can collect the data and contact people directly.
- Chime: Chime will help you nurture leads, get more leads, and improve agent and team productivity.
- BoldLeads: BoldLeads offers agents the ability to create A/B tested seller lead generation landing pages within their CRM software, according to The Close.
- Revaluate: Revaluate uses machine learning and AI to gather data on past and current events in order to predict when someone will move.
- Grasshopper: Grasshopper gives real estate professionals the ability to create different phone numbers for different things. This helps to keep you focused on one task at a time, since multitasking can actually make you less productive.
These are just a few of the programs you can invest in as a real estate agent, that will no doubt give you something in return.
Create a More User-Friendly Experience
One distinguishing feature of KW’s website renovation is the streamlined, user-friendly experience, which mimics other real estate websites like Zillow, RedFin, and Trulia. Of course, Keller Williams is not just a place to find a home online – it’s a place to find a real estate agent. Despite being a brokerage, Keller William provides people with a platform to look for a home first, then find their agent. It’s the most common sense way to bring in leads, and it works.
By adding features that allows homebuyers to learn about their future neighborhood from an extremely local standpoint, it means that by the time the customer gets to you, they’re already much more certain of what they’re looking for. If you can apply this concept to your own business — whether it’s through digital technology or even a more old-school strategy like mailers — chances are you’ll have yourself more clients.
Prioritize the Agent-Consumer Relationship
Bringing in clients is one thing, but keeping them on board until you can eventually meet face-to-face and close a deal is another. One way Keller Williams is doing this is through their app, which is meant to strengthen the relationship between the agent and the consumer, according to Housing Wire. Because people use their cell phones in nearly every aspect of their life, catering to that and being present on a device that a person will look at daily, is one way to bring the agent and consumer closer.
Today, humans interact more on their devices than in person, and providing agents and customers with a platform to get to know each other better can help speed up the process of buying a home. The app will be released early this year.