Since internet is among the top three most important methods of generating real estate leads and online listing sites rank as one of the most valuable tools, every agent is challenged to leverage these resources for creating, capturing, and closing leads. But, how can agents effectively compare the value propositions of marketing on the most popular real estate sites? An analysis of online marketing solutions from Realtor.com and Homes.com show that their marketing tools stack up pretty solidly when compared side by side, offering a range of options to suit any agent’s CRM strategy, marketing budget, and revenue goals. Both online real estate sites possess expansive reach that enables agents to pitch their professional profiles broadly while electing strategies that fit within their budget and plan. The no-cost Realtor.com profiles promote trust relationships with prospects by detailing agents’ listings, client recommendations, ratings, and reviews. Similarly, two programs through Homes.com amplify an agents’ brand while also providing the benefit of decreasing regional competition for carry a nominal cost. For instance, the Local Connect program, available to only a select number of agents within a specific zip code, features links to registered agents’ contact information, profile, or website. An enhanced version, the Preferred Agent program, virtually eliminates online marketing competition by placing regionally-exclusive links to the registered agent’s profile only. Regardless of the price point an agent chooses, all of these programs deliver the ability to cast a wide net for maximizing brand awareness and lead pipeline development. In addition, leading online real estate sites can aid effective CRM expansion with prompt lead response tools. Both the Showcase Listings by Realtor.com and Lead Concierge by Homes.com direct all prospects solely to the registered agent through lead notification, alongside valuable consumer context such as recently viewed properties. While the Showcase Listing program automatically sends prospects an email to let them know an agent will reach out shortly, Lead Concierge answers online queries directly, e licits qualifying information, and transfers the prospect to the agent in real-time. The main distinction between these two online solutions is the degree of third party service, and agents’ needs will vary according to their budget and CRM development plan. Realtor.com and Homes.com also have agents covered for the indispensable integration of social media networking into their CRM strategy, with each site providing solutions designed for the specific scope of content marketing services required. Realtor.com offers a free Social Connections […]
Norfolk, Virginia (September 16, 2015) – Homes.com®, leading online real estate destination and provider of real estate marketing solutions, has announced the addition of REcolorado to its MLS Partnership Program. The new partnership will offer REcolorado’s 18,000 real estate professionals free exposure for their 9,500 active listings by gaining access to Homes.com’s audience of more than 13 million monthly transaction-ready consumers. REcolorado brokers can now offer their agents direct access to syndicate their listings on Homes.com, ensuring those listings are advertised accurately and updated regularly. Consumers visiting Homes.com will benefit from the improved quantity and quality of available listings in Colorado, and will have a clear path to connect directly with the local brokerage and agent representing each listing. “Our new partnership with Homes.com offers REcolorado brokers and agents listing-level control where their listings appear, while improving the quality of listings available for consumers on Homes.com,” said Kirby Slunaker, president and CEO of REcolorado. “By driving engaged consumers back to either the broker’s website or recolorado.com, everyone involved wins.” The benefits provided by Homes.com’s MLS partnership program include: Data Accuracy – More timely and accurate listing data. Prominent Branding – Clear attribution and branding for the listing agent and broker on listing detail pages. Consumer Leads – All leads from Homes.com are emailed directly to the listing agent. MLS Branding – Prominent branding for REcolorado.com as the trusted source of the listing information. Direct Links – All listings on Homes.com can include “deep links” back to the broker’s website or REcolorado’s consumer website, REcolorado.com. “The primary objective of Homes.com’s MLS partnership program is to provide timely and accurate listing information to consumers searching for their next home, and to ensure those consumers are able to connect directly with the listing agent representing the seller,” said Andy Woolley, Homes.com’s vice president of industry development. “By prominently displaying the listing broker and agent, and always sending leads directly to the listing agent, Homes.com ensures REcolorado members are able to connect directly with our transaction-ready consumers.” For more information on the benefits Homes.com can provide MLSs and their subscribers, visit http://connect.homes.com/mls/. About Homes.com Homes.com is a leading provider of real estate marketing and media services, including brand advertising, property listing exposure and syndication, search engine marketing and instant response lead generation. Homes.com Connect offers the real estate industry’s first-ever all-inclusive marketing platform for agents and brokers featuring single-login convenience. Homes.com is visited by more than […]
Norfolk, Virginia (July 21, 2015) – Homes.com and RE/MAX, LLC (NYSE: RMAX) are renewing and expanding their long-standing technology and advertising agreement. RE/MAX has selected Homes.com to power the remax.com website and the RE/MAX suite of mobile applications through 2017, extending the relationship that began in 2005. “We’re thrilled that RE/MAX has once again selected Homes.com to power the most important elements of their online marketing efforts,” said David Mele, president of Homes.com. “We offer RE/MAX and its Affiliates a unique approach, combining our innovative technology services with our vast consumer reach. Together, we are leveraging the audiences of Homes.com and Remax.com to build traffic and deliver leads from both websites efficiently and directly to RE/MAX sales associates.” As part of their expanded agreement, RE/MAX and Homes.com will launch a co-branded edition of the Homes.com Connect lead management and marketing platform later this year in RE/MAX Company Owned regions, serving as an upgrade to the current RE/MAX LeadStreet system. Homes.com Connect will offer RE/MAX agents a robust contact and lead manager, listing management, email marketing system, third-party lead aggregation, social prospecting and more. The agreement also includes launching a new, fully-responsive version of remax.com. RE/MAX will utilize Homes.com’s in-house design team to create a fresh look for remax.com, a trusted consumer resource. “For nearly a decade, RE/MAX Affiliates have had much success with the Homes.com platform through its quality lead generation and premier marketing techniques,” said Tim Drouillard, RE/MAX senior vice president, information technology. “We’re excited to continue our relationship and enhance the many marketing opportunities available from Homes.com.” About Homes.com Homes.com is a leading provider of real estate marketing and media services, including brand advertising, property listing exposure and syndication, search engine marketing and instant response lead generation. Homes Connect by Homes.com offers the real estate industry’s first-ever all-inclusive marketing platform for agents and brokers featuring single-login convenience. Homes.com is visited by more than 13 million consumers each month to search nearly four million properties for sale or rent, to locate real estate agents in their area and to find useful home buying tips. For more information, visit www.Homes.com. For more media information: Patty McNease Patty@Homes.com
WAV Group has a strong working relationship between many portal operators and the brokers and MLSs we support. Homes.com is among the largest portals in real estate and among the top providers of franchise, MLS agent, and broker tools in real estate. Last week, Homes.com announced that David Mele was appointed the President of Homes.com. Previously, Terry Slattery was responsible for Homes.com business and the ForRent businesses. Homes.com effectively split the job in half and brought in David Mele to head up the Homes.com unit. Mr. Mele has worked for Landmark’s Dominion family of companies for a long time and was previously in charge of operating The Virginian-Pilot and its affiliate business units. The Virginian-Pilot is the largest newspaper in the great State of Virginia and is the primary publication of the Hampton Roads Market, a DMA of roughly 1.5 million residents (and no major sports teams!). During his tenure at The Virginian-Pilot, Mele was celebrated by his company and by other newspapers across the nation for his management of the successful shift from print to a solid offering of print+online. He leaves The Virginian-Pilot in great shape with readership climbing as a result of the multimedia publishing strategy he led. When asked, Mele suggested that there are four principles that will guide him at Homes.com. First, his goal is to connect consumers in the best way to information that they find valuable, without resurrecting any walled gardens. Secondly, Homes.com is going to pin their success on quality and accuracy of information. Third, Homes.com will maintain their steadfast course of supporting the community of real estate professionals connecting to the consumer. Lastly, his goal is better, not bigger. I have never been a big fan of comScore for tracking publishers. I prefer to look at the size of the consumer audience in local markets using comScore’s competitor, Hitwise. Real Estate is local, and huge national numbers should not be used to project local online audience. Today, comScore ranking for portals in August looked something like this: Zillow – 59.1 million unique visits on desktop and mobile Trulia – 30.1 million unique visits on desktop and mobile Realtor.com – 24.1 million unique visits on desktop and mobile Yahoo – 9.9 million unique visits on desktop and mobile* Homes.com 8.1 million unique visits on desktop and mobile *Zillow also operates Yahoo!, MSN, Scripts, AOL, over 360 newspaper portals One of the interesting […]
WAV Group is conducting research to discover if there is any broker in the United States who has pulled out of IDX and only offers a Virtual Office Website to consumers. Presumably, it would be a large enough broker who would display their listings publicly without the need to register to the site. If consumers wanted to see other broker listings, they would need to register. No other broker would be able to display that brokers listings to the public. If you know of such a site here in America, please direct me to it and you will be handsomely rewarded. My loving relationship with Virtual Office Websites (VOW) dates back to about 2005 when MRED was called MLSNI. You see, the Chicago area had a local custom whereby brokers could elect to exclude some other brokers from obtaining and displaying their listings via Broker Reciprocity or IDX. To obtain access to all of the data, consumers would need to register to the brokers VOW. Consumers gladly registered to access all of the listings, get more property information like sold listings, and lead generation rates for that area were far higher than other regions of the county. Around 2005, Listingbook launched their VOW solution in partnership with MLSs. One of the most popular posts ever published on the WAV Group website was titled “Listingbook is a must have for every MLS.” Even today, agents may have access to a VOW solution combined with email marketing, contact management, flyer program and a host of other agent productivity tools for free. Listingbook was one of the early pioneers of Freemium Pricing for MLSs whereby some functionality of the solution is offered free with permission to publish advertising. Premium subscription has more features and removes advertising. VOWs have one thing in common, they allow all non-confidential MLS data to be displayed to the consumer online if they are registered to that agent’s website. In a way, I think that Listingbook stalled many technology companies from developing new, innovative VOW solutions for agents. Its hard to compete with a free product offered in partnership with the MLS. The ability to access all MLS data, including sold listings, days on market, and price changes over time make VOW solutions very appealing. It did not take long for some inspired brokerages like Zip Realty, Redfin and others to leverage VOW data in ways that enabled them to gain an online […]
The CMLS meetings (Council of MLS) were held on Wednesday, November 7th. There were numerous presentations but one in particular seemed to engage the Nation’s leading MLS executives in attendance – ReThink MLS. The question before the panel was “What If We Started from Scratch?” As we all know, MLS rules (including Broker Reciprocity) provides structure for how brokers and agents will behave when sharing listings with one another: Two problems have arisen since these rules were first crafted more than a dozen years ago. The MLS rules have become cumbersome in length and somewhat unwieldy to manage and enforce. Technology is advancing at a faster pace than the development of the rules. As the title to this article would suggest, the purpose of the session was to brainstorm, and contemplate ideas that might frame a more perfect union. It is upon this premise that Art Carter, CEO of America’s largest MLS – CRMLS proposed a thesis framed like a constitution or list of commandments. Disclaimer: Mr. Carter had feedback from his panelists and others on the creation of this list – so do not be alarmed – it is merely a thesis to promote discussion. The notion for discussion is that by creating a one page set of rules that outline the spirit of cooperation within the MLS – life may improve. You shall compensate other Brokers within the MLS if they bring a ready, willing and able buyer to your seller. You shall present offers in a timely manner to your seller and pay the compensation as published in the service if an agreement is reached regarding the sale of the property. You shall not place your listings in other places prior to your home MLS and this must be done within two days of getting the listing, unless your seller designates in writing otherwise. You shall not publish the listings of other Brokers via the Internet unless they have given approval and the listing brokerage is given credit for the listing on your website. Only fields that the Service allows for publication can be shown on the Internet unless the Brokerage operates as a virtual office website, then the Broker must show electronic evidence of a relationship with the viewing consumer. Remember the rule of cooperation, when placing a listing in the service, you are agreeing to help other brokers bring a ready, willing and able buyer […]
Today, there are two front-runners in online property search – Zillow and Move. They are both public companies. Falling in line behind them are two private companies, Homes.com and Trulia. Here is how the revenue stacks up on the public companies. Move, Inc., Operators of Realtor.com who is in partnership with AOL Real Estate and MSN real estate for publishing broker listings reported revenue of $47.7 million today. Move did not report any earnings or losses. Seattle Upstart Zillow has been on a run, increasing traffic to levels comparable with Move and purchasing companies. They reported revenue of $22.8M and earnings of $.06 per share. It is interesting that the Zillow CEO made comments about the real estate industry spending $6B a year in advertising. I think that he intended to say $6B a year on advertising, technology, MLS dues, and Association Dues. Move’s Highlights from PR Wire “During the first quarter, Move continued to lay the groundwork for a successful 2012 while delivering growth in our core Realtor.com business,” said Steve Berkowitz, chief executive officer at Move, Inc. “As local market trends improved slightly in the first quarter, Move realized solid revenue in our Realtor.com Showcase offering and saw promising signs of stability in Top Producer. Solid results from these traditional core products provide the foundation to build on with our newer Co-Broke basic leads program and PreQualPlus mortgage product, which we believe will help drive positive revenue growth in 2012. We are executing effectively against an active 2012 calendar, having already launched a number of key initiatives with many more scheduled for later this year. With the growing use of mobile devices in real estate search, Move continues to lead the real estate industry as it harnesses new technologies that are fundamentally changing how consumers and real estate professionals connect.” Recent Highlights: Market leadership: Realtor.com remains the most trusted name in online real estate. In the first quarter of 2012, users spent nearly 1.2 billion minutes and viewed approximately 1.5 billion total pages on the Realtor.com network, more than 1.5 times the nearest competitor(1). Mobile Highlights: Move rolled out several new or updated versions of its market-leading mobile applications. Today, nearly 40% of all “Homes For Sale” viewed on Realtor.com are on a mobile device. Leads delivered to agents and brokers through Realtor.com’s mobile applications grew by more than 120 percent year-over-year. Co-Broke Connection: Realtor.com’s solution for […]
Today’s real estate technology companies are partnering with MLSs at an unprecedented rate. This trend is brought about by natural gravity. The MLS is the primary source of fundamental technology for real estate professionals. WAV Group is beginning to see a number of MLSs pursuing a variety of strategies for offering non-core MLS services. Historically, MLSs only pursued site licenses for technology for their members, paying a price per member per month. This trend expanded as emerging products like Listhub, Property Panorama, and Listingbook began to offer Freemium services, where the MLS offered a free basic version of the product, but subscribers could opt into advanced features by paying a premium. Recently, Metrolist in Colorado; MRIS in the Mid-Atlantic States; and MLSListings.com in California launched retail stores for technology. Last week, the California Regional Multiple Listing Service announced a partnership with Homes.com to offer the complete Homes.com tool set as a member benefit – returning to the trend of site licenses. Homes.com has had a long-standing relationship with MLSs in California site licenses for a cross-MLS property search and CMA tool under the product name Mercado with the MLS Alliance search. The new relationship adds abundantly more product offerings that marry data to key agent resources beyond the Mercado marketing package. Agents will have access to the Homes Connect Marketing platform (Design Center) tied to the Homes.com Customer Relationship Management solution. This CRM solution recently added social prospecting features through Linkedin, Facebook, and Twitter contact integration. Topping it all off, agents will receive IDX and VOW offerings included in the package along with agent facing and consumer facing mobile offerings and the Facebook Listing Application for Facebook business pages. (Kitchen sinks available if requested). But wait, there is more…… Participating brokers and agents will also have their listings displayed on Homes.com and their agent MyHomes profiles populated from the MLS roster on the site. CRMLS has purchased all of these products from Homes.com and will be offering them all as a member benefit. By my basic accounting, this includes every Homes.com product with exception of advertising enhancements on Homes.com (Homes Connect Plus and Homes Connect Pro). Some more observations: CRMLS offers multiple MLS systems: Matrix and Tempo/ Fusion. To some extent you could include REALTORS Property Resource and WyldFyre 7 to this list although they are not MLS systems (only MLS data search). CRMLS offers multiple IDX/VOW solutions: SmartDesk IDX […]
Divorce happens in life and in business. Keeping a relationship together over a long term requires faith and dedication. When issues arise, strong partnerships raise to the occasion. Online competition is fierce today. RE/MAX is crushing all other franchises in America in terms of visits and page views, but there are new competitors now – publishers. It is harder to stay competitive unless you have a great team. There is always fear in any relationship. Fear that something could be better if you were partnered elsewhere. My goodness – look at the divorce rate in America. But today’s post is about a love story between two companies – companies that respect each other, companies that work together, companies that anticipate a life together. Congratulations to RE/MAX and Homes.com for renewing their VOWS. Homes.com and RE/MAX® Launch New Online Strategic Partnership Homes.com selected to power remax.com and create new mobile apps suite (Norfolk, VA, March 6, 2012) —Homes.com and RE/MAX, LLC, announced today the launch of a major new online marketing partnership. RE/MAX has selected Homes.com to power the new remax.com website and the newly released suite of RE/MAX mobile applications for Apple and Android mobile devices. The two organizations will also be launching collaborative efforts to market Homes.com local advertising products and the new Homes Connect marketing platform to RE/MAX Sales Associates throughout North America.
Real Estate brokers invest a lot of time and money into maintaining and sustaining a strong relocation business. Franchise Organizations and broker networks like Leading Real Estate Companies of the World connect brokers across the country. Advances in technology have enabled location aware Internet browsers. This allows technologists to create predictable outcomes on user visits. If you are a broker in Ohio, and a consumer visits your website from California – you can say “We welcome Californians! Leading websites like Trulia, Zillow, Realtor.com, Homes.com and Homefinder do this effectively. Why don’t broker websites do the same? Browser auto-detect allows website owners to create actions around the criteria of a visitor including location or browser type. To illustrate browser type, visit http://c21home.com from your mobile browser. The broker website will direct you to choosing the mobile site, or offer a mobile app download specifically designed for your phone. In this case, the website will detect your phone type, and you will be directed to the Smarter Agent mobile solution optimized to your device. This is pretty commonplace. Here is a fresh idea that I have not seen on real estate websites yet. This idea detects the State that a visitor is from and provides some special information designed specifically for them.