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Portal Enhancement Wars

2 minute read

Following on from REA’s recent website enhancements Domain today replied by launching enhancements to their property page. From their press release:

What are the key changes to the property details pages?

  1. Clearer layout of information
  2. Increased agency branding and cross promotional opportunities
  3. Enhanced Enquiry process

How will you and your agency benefit from these changes.

  • Agents will be able to more strongly promote their listings to generate more leads.
  • Property seekers will be able to more easily identify properties of interest.
  • Enhanced agent branding and cross-promotional opportunities will offer your agents increased exposure of their listings at no extra cost.
  • The enhanced enquiry process, not offered by our competitors, aims to generate more quality leads to your business.

The property page is now a real tool and is a useful resource for property seekers. They can click to view a suburb profile, quickly access street view, view recent sales and see other properties listed by that agent. From an agents perspective it is great as their details are at the top of the page and in the “face of the user”. The enhanced enquiry process makes it easier for property seekers to submit an enquiry while the agent’s brand is highlighted through their listings at the bottom of the page.

Given the launch of Google it shouldn’t be too long until the next installment of REA enhancements.

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10 Comments

  • PaulD
    Posted July 16, 2009 at 8:07 pm 0Likes

    Looks like someone got out the Jargon generator, bunch of bs if you ask me

    “How will you and your agency benefit from these changes.
    Agents will be able to more strongly promote their listings to generate more leads.
    Property seekers will be able to more easily identify properties of interest.
    Enhanced agent branding and cross-promotional opportunities will offer your agents increased exposure of their listings at no extra cost.
    The enhanced enquiry process, not offered by our competitors, aims to generate more quality leads to your business.”

    We still get no more enquiry that we ever have from Domain. 21 emails in June for sales, some from properties that I can’t even find on the website ( they were archived up to 3 years ago) Of the 21 emails 6 were sent twice by obsessive compulsive people. That is, they hit send twice, and we got the same email twice. That represents 28% of the total emails I got. Does anyone else think that is significant ?. I certainly do. I have mentioned that fact before, but seems like no one could care less. Does that mean that a significant % of the emails claimed by REA & Domain are just simple double ups ? It could be just high for the month, but I see double emails quite a lot. I couldn’t care less except they count them and throw them back as useless statistics, like today when they stated that there has been a 26% increase in emails since June —- not hard when many of them are just some frustrated person hitting the enter key. Just goes to show that the statistics they expect us to believe are VERY rubbery.

  • The Insider
    The Insider
    Posted July 17, 2009 at 8:32 am 0Likes

    I’ve been meaning to complete a poll in relation to where the majority of an agents’s property inquiries generate from. So i’ve added a poll to this post but due to the plugin I’m limited to the type of poll I can publish. I was hoping to gather the location of the voter and have them break down their inquiries as a % across the options.

    Anyhow, this should give us a reasonable estimate.

  • Glenn Batten
    Posted July 17, 2009 at 10:04 am 0Likes

    If you cut through the jargon I think in theory they are on the right track in what they want to do…. Concentrating on the quality of the enquiry and how to squeeze the most enquiries out of the same number of visitors is the way to go. Google will obliterate any concept of boasting about visitor numbers, property views etc etc and if they want to justify their subscription fees then quality and performance will be required in the future.

    Unfortunatley I will not be able to test how that relates to the real world because we have cancelled our Domain subuscription after they wanted to raise our subscription by 137% in a single year.

    Thats not a typo… It is not a 37% rise.. but a 137% rise over and above the previous years subscription meaning they wanted us to pay nearly 2.5 times. Absolutely insane and what was even worse was the logic they tried to justify that increase especially when there performance even from their own statistics went backwards for our office.

    This increase makes some of the REA increases appear tiny in comparison.

  • Kylie Emans
    Posted July 17, 2009 at 11:05 am 0Likes

    It is about time domain.com.au picked up their game, for the last 6 months we received practically no email enquiry from domain, to the point where I thought “Are they having a email glitch like realestate.com.au had last year!” I have just listed an auction property this week however and the emails have been coming in from domain, obviously they have done something. What a find annoying is the doubling up is still happening and the annoying standard questions that all the emails now have. It is an Auction property but the standard question they are all ticking is “What is the asking price?” Does anyone at domain IT have a real estate background? In addition, to actually advertise the property as an Auction with the Auction details clearly indicated, the backend is now so ridiculously complicated and you have to enter things 3 times and in boxes you would not normally think to put these details.

    I noticed Glenn’s comment about the price rises, we had to deal with the same thing and we lost our holiday portal on domain to stayz.com.au last year and we don’t do rentals so not only did they try the massive price increase on us they also took away half their services. Bring on the portal wars real estate agents can’t afford to let these 2 get to big, they already treat us poorly. When are agents going to get it that they need to promote their own website. Bring on googlemaps.

  • snoop
    Posted July 18, 2009 at 5:21 am 0Likes

    4 per cent from Google real estate already??
    Surely they mean Google as a search engine

  • Bdog
    Posted July 20, 2009 at 11:20 am 0Likes

    Where’s the poll??

  • Ryan O'Grady
    Posted September 14, 2009 at 2:40 pm 0Likes

    “realestate.com.au launches an Australian first for real estate websites – Gallery view. “. You can have a look at here http://www.realestate.com.au/cgi-bin/rsearch?u=BONDI&cu=fn-rea&a=qfp&id=bondi&s=nsw&o=def&ph=1&m=0&f=0&p=10&t=res&c=36662655&tm=1252902501.

    It is great because it means that annoying banner on the right hand side of search results no longer appears. It’s a huge benefit to those agents who spend time or money on professional photography.

  • Ricky
    Posted September 15, 2009 at 2:49 pm 0Likes

    I think this is one of the better things that REA have done for a while and will be a real plus for vendors and an easy sell for agents seeking to differentiate between the portals.

    Love the lack of banner presence as mentioned by Ryan. Temptation to make some extra coin out of that one must have been hard to resist but they haven’t done it yet.

    Whoops. Spoke to soon. My costs for existing feature banners just went up.

  • PaulD
    Posted September 17, 2009 at 12:19 pm 0Likes

    It doesn’t take much to make people think there is a huge new change to REA.
    The thing is, that you still get 10 properties per page, only the pic is bigger.
    The next thing is that it will cost more to make up for the advertising that was previously on the page, and then that becomes the standard. Higher price to the agent, still ten properties per page. Wake up guys, if you have decent pics they will still be seen. People don’t only look at one photo, and for the vast majority of the public, the advertising banners don’t even get noticed. They become the “wallpaper effect”. The only people who notice are the agents.
    If you don’t believe me, get one of your friends (non-agent) to get on to realestate.com.au and search for property that they think they would like to buy. Don’t tell them why you want to do that, otherwise it will defeat the purpose of the exercise. Then after they have done that and closed out of the site. Ask them what was on the right hand side of the screen. You will more than likely find that they have no idea, or at least if they can remember there was an ad, they will not remember whose it was. The other thing is that they will more than likely not remember who the agent was that had the property they liked.

  • Craig
    Posted September 17, 2009 at 12:43 pm 0Likes

    PaulD, you are totally correct with your observation. It is interesting that agents are so keen to get their logos on the property page, yet buyers take absolutely no notice of this.

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