With the takeover of Trulia, Zillow’s colossal coup in online real estate dominion has been the cause of some anxiety among concerned real estate professionals. But will the newly dubbed “Zulia” be a power to reckon with or is the monster created by the merger, just smoke and mirrors?
A recent survey indicated more than 50% of real estate professionals consider the alliance a force for evil, fearing a massive jump in the prices of online real estate marketing. But change is inevitable so before we all run for cover, let’s take a calm look at some of the facts.
According to reports online, farsighted market professionals are already discovering ways to use the new behemoth to help them sell homes. And at least one real estate broker has now tapped into the controversial “Coming Soon” feature, using it to benefit real estate investors and their agents alike. But here are some simple factors that may not have crossed your mind:
- Competing with this new giant on a general, nationwide scale will be an impossibility for most. Rather use it to spotlight your position as the master of your local area. By bringing your niche into focus, you become the go-to expert.
- Zillow, together with its new associates, has a huge volume of existing material and can easily recruit genius copywriters for even more content. But lone real estate investors and smaller companies can benefit by viewing the new giant as one enormous research tool to use when creating their own content marketing. Find content ides for your blog by looking at the “Popular Posts” and discover the pressing questions currently worrying consumers.
- With the threat of Zulia monopolizing the market, real estate agents are suspicious of changes to access charges. Many real estate professionals are already loath to interact on Zillow, afraid of feeding Goliath at their own expense.
- Interestingly, recent statistics from NAR indicate only 4% of sellers and 9% of buyers reported finding their agent through the Internet. A whopping 71% picked their agent based upon a referral or face-to-face prospecting. These figures show that the best place to spend your money is instigating face-to-face contact with past clients.
- The biggest drawback of Internet real estate platforms is the inability of the medium to interact in a meaningful manner. The real estate industry is all about relationships, a people business; there’s no feasible substitute. Zillow, Trulia, Zulia and others will always be there for a reference but when it comes to buying or selling, millions of clients will seek “friends” and trusted resources.
- Being a real estate agent is all about building relationships, online or off, and attracting business. What is your average homebuyer looking for? A knowledgeable and experienced professional to guide them through their home purchase process. There is no substitute for the personalized, highly tailored services offered by experienced agents and brokers.
Zillow and Trulia are not your opponents; they are websites, and websites are only tools. Real estate professionals, who take pride in their work, will always stand out as the quality, customer service driven option.