10 Ways to Modernize Your Real Estate Business FAST
It appears it’s time to move and shake
You have probably heard multiple times again and again about how technology is making every industry more efficient and effective. The real estate business has been the slowest industry to adapt to these changes, it appears it’s time to move and shake. We have some tips & tricks to point you in the right direction.
1. Have a strong social media presence
It’s no secret that no matter what industry you are in, it is increasingly important to have an online presence. Did you know that it can actually increase your profitable leads? More and more people are searching for home buying advice online, especially through Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. If you want these leads, you are going to need a presence on all of these social networks. Not only that, but you are going to need high quality engaging posts that offer valuable advice to your audience. It’s as important as having a highly search engine optimized website. Take your business into the next generation of lead generation and get yourself on social media, improve your current profiles or hire a certified social media expert to help you.
2. Optimize you website for mobile screens
According to Mobile Entertainment, 39% of people access their mobile browsers every hour, globally. If a user lands on your webpage and it’s not easy to navigate on a mobile device they will leave without taking the time to see what you have to offer. It’s crucial nowadays that you have a mobile optimized website and that your design elements are reflective of the current flat graphic design trend. This will help you capture the modern homebuyer and make their lives much easier by presenting them with an easy to navigate mobile-friendly website.
3. Upgrade your phone to a smartphone
It should go with out saying that if you’re in the real estate business you should be using a smart phone. Don’t be afraid, it will make your life so much better! You will be able to utilize the latest apps for real estate agents and connect on the go. Being able to reach your audience from your fingertips or to respond to your clients while in between showing a house is so important. Your audience expects you to be available on a whim. Of course you can choose how available you want to be, but it’s still important to give yourself that option. With a smartphone you essentially have a mini computer in your pocket to perform any and all forms of communication (social media, emails, voice calls, skype calls, texts, listing updates etc.) If you haven’t done so already we would highly recommend investing in a top-notch smartphone for your business.
4. Equip your smartphone with the best organizational apps
Now that you have a smartphone let’s discuss how and why you should be using apps to make your life and your client’s lives easier. Keeping yourself organized on the go is key. The more organized you are the more clients you can manage. This helpful article lists the 30 must have mobile apps for real estate agents. For example, if you have your social media apps such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. you can access your online communities from your fingertips and respond as people comment, like and share in real-time. You can also sync and access your email, calendars, notepads (Evernote), LogMeIn, Magic Plan, etc. We all have our phones on us practically 24/7 so why not use the best industry apps so you can work smarter, not harder?
5. Outsource the little things that take up your time
Outsourcing is becoming more and more popular as people make the switch to working remotely and freelancing websites offer more security and higher quality applicants. You only have so much time in the day so why not focus all of your attentions to the important tasks that you love about your job. By outsourcing the mundane administrative tasks to other people online it will improve your business by allowing you the time to focus on the most engaging tasks. Some popular freelancing sites are ODesk, PeoplePerHour, eLance and Freelancer. Nowadays, with outsourcing, why spend an hour of your day on social media when you don’t have to? CityBlast experts will take social media efforts off your hands and produce better results.
6. Go Green: Switch your documents over to e-signing capabilities
The modern day consumer is always looking for ways to “go green” and keep their wasteful consumption levels down. Show your customer that you’re a forward-thinker and give your clients the option to sign digitally. This is also more efficient because you can retrieve a signature via secure email within seconds. It’s as simple as writing your signature on a blank slip of paper and holding it up to your webcam. This technology will save your e-signature and with the click of a button you can import it into any document that has e-signing capabilities. Check out these great options to go green today.
7. Use your mobile device to provide video tours to your clients
You no-longer have to shuttle your clients around from home-to-home, when you can now send them a virtual tour or even show them around liveusing the FaceTime feature on your iPhone. It is a much faster way to show a single client multiple homes and compare them side-by-side on multiple screens. This is also a great way to showcase how tech-savvy you are as a real estate agent. You could also share these types of videos on your social media profiles and give your audience a sneak peek into some of your listings.
8. Add and maintain a blog on your website
A blog is the best way to generate better search engine optimization for your website and drive more website traffic. By providing free, valuable information to your clients and potential clients you can easily position yourself as an expert in your industry. This will also provide great content you can share across your social media platforms and in your email marketing campaigns. Blogs are also a fun way to showcase some of your best listings and get more targeted leads for a particular home.
9. Quickly look up any home exterior with Google Earth
If you want to easily compare exterior homes to your clients in real time, or grab a screen shot of the exterior of a home, then you should be using the Google Earth app. This app can zoom in on any home in almost every part of the world. It’s a great way to quickly pull up a shot of a house to either compare or showcase to a potential client.
10. GPS technology
The majority of vehicles already come with a GPS and you have one on your smartphone, but it shouldn’t be overlooked. When you are taking clients to a new home there is nothing more embarrassing than getting lost or hitting a detour and being unable to find your way back en route. Another good function of GPS is to help give directions to your clients. If you are meeting a client at a home quickly use your GPS to map out the best route for them and go the extra mile by emailing them directions.
We’ve given you a list of options to consider when modernizing your real estate business, but you need to choose which resources are going to work best for you. Don’t try and do everything all at once, start with the ones that you can easily incorporate into your business and your daily routine. We think Jessica Edwards said it best:
“Being a modern agent does not mean being on every social media platform or having your cellphone surgically attached to your hand. Being a modern agent means working smart. It is understanding what technology is available and choosing the things that will make your life easier and make you stand out in a crowded marketplace.” – Jessica Edwards