Gone are the days when agents were the gatekeepers of property market insights.
Today’s agents are working with real estate consumers who are plugged in, switched on and tuned into the market’s movements. Property data portals are there to provide insights that enable consumers to self-educate, notwithstanding the myriad of information in the form of articles, reports, blogs and social media stemming from this.
But changes to the way consumers learn about the real estate market doesn’t eliminate the need for agents to be switched on - quite the contrary.
The opportunities are endless for agents who can tap into the various forms of data at their disposal - data delivering property market insights, data that can help them make smarter business decisions, and data that will help them to better understand their customers.
For example, realestateVIEW.com.au can provide market leading visibility on where your leads are being generated - whenever a potential customer emails a friend, adds an open for inspection to his/her calendar, downloads a brochure or shares the property via social media, we can alert you to potential buyers and help you understand how they’re finding you.
Insight into data that complements what customers already consume is also a vital value-add that agents should be offering to elevate their role as property market experts.
While a consumer can find data on auction results, recent sales, median prices and days on market, depending on where they’re looking that data may not be reliable. And although they have access to data, they don’t always know what to do with it. It takes time, background knowledge, and experience to interpret all the information and make it meaningful – this is where an agent comes in. They’re the only ones who can humanise the data; only they truly know their local markets inside out and advise consumers what a property is worth, where and what to buy, and when and how to sell.
It’s about putting agents back in control and emphasising their role as the only experts in property transactions.
What’s more, data helps agents make smarter business decisions. ‘Big Data’ is a term used to describe the process of using new technology to uncover invaluable business insights from multiple and complex data sets - a process that is too technical for traditional forms of analysis. The potential of Big Data sourced through online searches, mobile technology and social networks is invaluable. Data is available that can track where you’re placed against local competitors, showing who is selling what, who is buying, for how much, and how fast. This makes it easier to peg your strengths and weaknesses against those of your competitors, and target your marketing efforts accordingly. An important piece of data could save you thousands on costly ad placements that aren’t reaching your target audience.
The value and power of data is undeniable, and it doesn’t have to be complicated or costly. For agents, it’s simply a case of indentifying the various types of data available and pinpointing what can be used to assist them in their roles.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Petra Sprekos is the general manager of realestateVIEW.com.au. Under Petra’s leadership, the portal has grown to more than 1.1 million unique visitors a month with over 350,000 property listings for sale and rent, contributed by more than of 5,000 agencies nationally. Petra graduated with Honours in Business before pursuing her Masters, where she completed a 70,000-word thesis on entrepreneurship in the property industry.