The presentation of property online has radically transformed over the past 5 years.
Back in 2006 when the new website of Realestate.co.nz emerged to provide a much improved user experience, the content provided on the site was by today’s standards pitiful. On average a listing had only 3 photos. The property seldom had an address, and the description was often copied from the newspaper advert. At the time the real estate industry in general judged the web as an after-thought, with the central focus being on print advertising in newspapers and magazines.
Skip forward 5 years to today and so much has changed. Today the first destination for almost all property seekers is online, on average property seekers spend over 3 hours a week on property websites. Their intent is to spend even more time in the future with more than a third of them say they will check out property online more frequently. (This data comes from the recent Nielsen online intercept survey carried out in July this year).
As this exponential growth of viewing property online has transformed the real estate industry; so at the same time the industry has adapted and recognised the need to provide more information with each listing. The average number of photos per listing has shot up to 16. The photos have got bigger, and to accommodate these we have added full screen viewing. Today more than 65% of all listings now have an address which allows property maps to be included on the website providing great context to the property location.
These improvements fit perfectly into the wish list of users of real estate websites as identified in the Nielsen survey – the table below tracks the most requested information presented on a real estate website:
Nestled firmly below the expected critical information on property listings – the address, the large portfolio of high quality images and maps is the desire for floor plans. 89% of those surveyed stated that they would like to see floorplans for properties on the market.
That request has now been answered on the realestate.co.nz website. Working with partners such as MyAgent and Open2view we have enabled the integration of interactive floor plans for properties on the market today on the website. These solutions which go further than just static image based floor plans adding in the context of the location for each images matched to the part of the house really add engagement to these listings which is so important for getting the maximum impact for the vendor’s property.
At this time this service of interactive floorplans on the realestate.co.nz is the unique in NZ and with several hundred listings already on the site featuring these floorplans, and more to come in the near future, we certainly see this as a compelling appeal of the website. Check out the example of a few current listing: