Buying your future home is becoming an increasingly digital experience; in fact, 95% of home searches now begin on the internet. Millennials in particular (who now represent the largest, and growing, age group of the home market) are accustomed to the online experience and the on-demand, informational nature. With unlimited online access to tools and resources, they expect a similar experience from the real estate agent.
A recent study showed that only 17% of homebuyers contacted a real estate agent as the first place as their first step. While demographics and technology are changing the home buying process in the digital age, real estate professionals aren’t faced with a threat but rather an opportunity to more effectively reach clients and differentiate themselves as the valued resource today’s home buyer seeks.
Make your client’s experience unique
Selling or buying a property is a major step, often intimidating and stressful. Customize each of your relationships for a smooth and successful transaction. Providing a responsive, organized and straightforward purchasing experience for clients will have a positive impact not only on the current sale but also for future business; in today’s review culture a happy client is one who will share their experience. Recommendations to friends, families or colleagues turn into all-important referral business.
A personalized process develops a relationship based on trust. Trust is inherent to the value of expertise and expertise is inherent to an agent’s ability to address a client’s fear and desires.
So, get to know your customer. Learn their story and pick up on their specific interests and pain points. It’s likely most will prefer a very attentive approach in some areas and a more independent one in others. You must find the right balance and become the asset that client needs.
"If today's shoppers are certainly more informed, they still want to feel supported throughout this demanding and stressful process" - Real Estate Agent, Matterport Client
According to a recent survey, conducted by the National Association of Real Estate Agents, 52% of respondents said they preferred to be helped by an agent to find their ideal property. Another survey done by Owners.com found that 49% of homebuyers said finding the right home was the hardest part of the entire process.
Be a pioneer of real estate technology
Innovation is essential to every industry. The more competitive the landscape the more necessary it becomes. Both buyers and sellers will search for the best experience possible in what is usually an emotional and stressful process. To stand out, real estate professionals must adapt their business to modern appeal and the tools at their disposal. Clients will only continue to gravitate toward brands that innovate more and more as awareness of the tools that are available becomes more and more prevalent. Establishing your brand at the forefront of an innovation’s awareness provides value beyond its day-to-day efficiencies or results.
Of course, choosing an innovative strategy is easier said than done. Put yourself in your client's shoes Again, understanding your clients will inform this thought process. At the end of the day it’s about best positioning your expertise in a field where quick and reliable insight is key.
The ability to communicate your insight and the information that supports it, has now been enabled by technology like never before. There are many tools with various functionalities designed to customize the way your brand reaches your clients. Offering a complete and accurate look at what a client can expect is especially important in real estate. Utilizing reality capture technology such as Matterport 3D provides this immersive experience with the most comprehensive and accurate look at the details of a real estate listing. A unique experience such as these navigable models complements the value you aim to convey through a unique perspective.
Today's buyers and sellers are more informed than ever before. They know what they’re looking for but also value an expert’s ability to facilitate the process to make finding it possible. In what amounts to a 24/7 open house, this complete and comprehensive view from your business with Matterport provides continuous access to the home search facilitation the market seeks. The efficiency of this remote experience extends throughout the process, streaming business operations from marketing, to showings and closing. In fact, a recent study showed that the use of virtual walkthroughs reduced the sales process by an average of 21 days.
Today’s real estate professional must reinvent client and prospect experiences by offering tools and services that allow each to cater to their own customized approach. Build a brand that creates client confidence by providing immersive, informational resources that make this major step in their lives unforgettable.