Why you need to have an Estate Agent website, mobile website and an app
28 March, 2011 | Web design
Three is the magic number.
Gone are the days when property professionals can only rely on their Estate Agent website. Technological advances in mobiles and tablet computers mean that people can now access online material in a variety of ways and for different purposes. Embracing this change ensures that your property and business information can be easily accessed, at any time and by any platform.
Currently there are 5 different ways that Estate Agents can present their information online. Each one brings something special to the table, mainly due to the way users interact with each one…
An Estate Agent website needs to be treated as a hub of all activity and information. It is a place where visitors probably have the greatest amount of free time in a single sitting. They will explore deep into your website, learning as much as they can about your business and the types of properties in your portfolio.
Generally Estate Agents will find that websites are:
- More versatile – with the help of various web design techniques, Estate Agent websites can host enhanced mapping and property search, high resolution image viewers, embedded Google Maps and virtual tours giving users a greater picture of the desirable properties.
- Bigger, higher resolution images – Size does matter. Modern computer screens have the largest resolution compared to other types of hardware.
- Greater static information – A bigger screen also means that Estate Agent websites can contain much more detail about the local area, company, staff profiles and much more.
- Flash – Not all mobiles and tablets support flash whereas computer browsers are much more versatile at reading code. If used properly, flash can bring an extra dimension to a website.
Mobile browsers, such as Apple’s Safari are much more basic than its computer counterpart but still play an important part of people’s lives on the go. The mobile website will be a redirect from the mail website once it is established that you are trying to access a website from a mobile.
- Basic functionality – Again a smaller screen means that there is a lot less interaction between the user and the mobile website. The mobile website is then scaled back to the basic functions of property search and listings.
- Website size – Not all mobiles can constantly enjoy the benefits of 3G or Wi-Fi on the go (and even some free Wi-Fi’s give the most basic of connection) therefore a mobile website needs to cater for those that can only access limited download speeds.
The explosion of the apps market has generated much interest from Estate Agents and business owners alike. Not only providing particular functionality, owning an app does have a certain social status - implying that the business is modern and up-to-date with technological trends. Similar to a mobile website, Estate Agent apps are:
- Simple – On the go information that people can access whilst waiting in a queue or passing the time on public transport.
- GPS – The great thing about smart phones is that they can relay your location so that the user can see local properties for sale or rent. With most people moving within a 5 mile radius, this is definitively an attractive feature.
- Overview – With a snapshot of your portfolio, buyers that like the look of the property can always request more information from property particulars at any time.
James Coyne eMarketing and Social Media Consultant