Over the past few years we have seen many private advertising sites hit the market. Many of these are pretty poor sites and get little to no traffic and therefore little to no real benefit to advertisers. This post is not designed to promote these types of sites, but to make agents aware of these types of developments as they mature.
Domain.com.au allow private advertising on their website and it may well be worth alot of money to them. I had a meeting before Christmas with one of their representatives and he told me that it was a very small amount of their revenues.
Newspapers for years have allowed private advertisers and its seems that real estate portals are now seeing real revenues from this sector. Realestate.com.au do not allow private advertisers, however many more agents now just charge a flat fee for listings, sometimes as low as $750.00.
Most of these agents are targeting the lower end of the market. However a few weeks ago I came across a site, that will make many agents skin crawl, but from a technical point of view it shows that this market is growing up and agents are going to have to sharpen their minds as this onslaught continues.
The site I am talking about is zeroagents.com.au and it really is an attack on real estate agents – and makes no bones about tapping into popular misconceptions of agents in some of the consumers minds. Here is the offer for premium advertising from this site @ $297.00 Inc GST.
You get 4 months advertising on Zeroagents.
In Zero Agents your Internet property advertisement will appear at the top of searches above standard listed properties.
You get 2 corflute signs delivered.
You get 4 months advertising on Domain, Trading Post and Hot Properties websites.
You get real buyer exposure. The thing that impressed me about this site, is that it is polished and shows a maturity in the understanding of the Internet. It does have its flaws but it is easily the most impressive site for private advertisers on the market today.
So what does this mean for agents?
For me, it is all about getting your message right, simply shrugging your shoulders may not be enough going forward. Many claims these companies make cannot be proven – just as many claims agents make cannot. So the must be a better approach taken to this. Of course the success of private sales is far far lower than through real estate agents, and yes sometimes they may sell for less. Most of the time they get agents through their homes to get a price and then list privately at around or above that price.
Agents of course can go through these sites and market their products and services to these people, however from talks with some agents this can be annoying, maybe a softly approach, an introduction, a “Mitsubishi……please consider”.
The reality is though, that private advertising is only going to grow stronger each year, as the Internet lowers the cost of entry. So agents have to be able to counter this in many ways.
The days of the glitzy multi office agency maybe coming to an end, replaced by mobile salespeople from an office and on the road.