Properties on Google Maps - a little bit of history repeating?
08 December, 2009 | Web design
After our recent article Google defies Rightmove throne; Rightmove shares gutted, there has been much interest and feedback regarding the likelihood of Google consuming the property portal market. Luckily Google already hosts properties for two countries - Australia and the U.S.
Google started listing properties on its Google Maps in Australia back in July of this year. With exactly the same affect, the main portal company realestate.com.au (REA group) had an initial 7% drop in shares. Six months later, the REA group has not only regained ground but the shares have increased 53% since the drop.
Therefore on a purely historical sense, Rightmove is likely to rebound from the primary shock and 'the end is nigh' predictions. Estate Agents against property portals need not cry too much over the possible survival of Rightmove, Google maps listing properties can work towards an Estate Agent's advantage.
Estate Agents that have fantastic Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and unbeatable web design do not have to fear. Google is not a property portal and it is going to stick at what it is good at - being a search engine. Therefore this has to be viewed as an extra medium for potential traffic. Users will click round the map till they find a property that they have interest. From there, the user will be directed to the agent's website.
Uh-oh - Bad news for Estate Agents that does not live up to today's standards. Without design that has that 'WOW' factor, functionality of property portals, and rich user-experience, you can guarantee that the user will press the 'Back' button. Right now a possible customer has just been lost within a few seconds of accessing your website.
On the other hand, it is fantastic news for Estate Agents that have a website that they are proud of. The extra avenue of traffic means that Estate Agents with stunning web design will retain more users than those that do not have that WOW factor.
Troy Stanley, CTO of Resource Techniques comments, 'This change is truly exciting for estate agents that taken the positive step towards improving their website from the awkward designs of the 90s. If your website does not have that WOW impact then it is certainly time for a redesign.'
Visit our portfolio page or call Resource Techniques on 0208 457 4777 to achieve the type of web design that will keep old customers and capture new ones.