Over the past 15 years, the advancement of technology has completely changed the way we live. At the same time, we have witnessed the unquestionable change in how traditional businesses operate and engage with their customers.
A recent survey found that “86% of potential buyers use the internet as their main tool to search for property” 1 . This statistic indicates that the Internet has developed into an essential tool for property buyers.
So how exactly is technology shaping the real-estate industry, and is it for the best?
One way that technology has changed the real estate industry can be directly linked to the use of smart phones. Google has recently changed its algorithm; rewarding mobile friendly websites with a higher ranking on their searches conducted on mobile devices2.
This has forced agencies to invest in tools that support their business to be completely mobile. Now people can access information on the go and on the spot.
The widely known website www.realestate.com.au receives on average 3 million visitors each month3. This website gives users access to the majority of property listings of all property types on the market. It provides detailed information on any suburb throughout Australia, and can even provide a virtual walkthrough of many properties.
It is technology like this, that has considerably altered the property industry by potentially replacing the use of real-estate agents, and giving the consumer instant access to vast amounts of information.
Keep your eyes out for more use of virtual reality tours of properties in the not too distant future.
With any major technological shift, there will always be some teething problems. The Internet is now saturated with information and frequently, it is misleading advertisements. Additionally, face-to- face interactions have become undervalued.
The virtual age is reducing the chance for personal contact, which is a fundamental step in solidifying a business relationship, especially in real estate where a lot of people are financially and emotionally invested.
Technology’s impact on the real-estate industry has played a major role in improving communication, storage and accessibility of information and will continue to do so. As real estate is a customer service focused industry, businesses that fail to adapt to change risk losing touch with customers. It is clear that technology has the capacity to cause changes in almost every industry; real estate is no exception.
1Residential Consumer Property Seeker Report, January 2015