Roy Dekel, CEO of SetSchedule.
Real estate agents may be missing out on a way to increase business through growing and readily available technologies. Up until recently, real estate has lagged far behind the initial technology pioneers we have seen across a variety of industries when it comes to the innovation of technological solutions and resources.
However, technologies to date have crept into the real estate industry, enhancing and reshaping almost all areas of real estate operations. Numerous tools that were considered to be emerging not so long ago are now commonly used as differentiators within the very competitive real estate industry.
Big data’s ability to connect potential home buyers and sellers to real estate professionals serves as the primary technology solution for the real estate industry. Using valuable intel, algorithms and data, we can use large information sets of user activity recorded and enacted over the internet to identify potential clients, provide more educated transaction decisions and plan risk assessments to real estate agents. Organizations that were early to the game, like Zillow, have mastered the analysis of real estate data to enhance the home shopping experience for consumers. Today, more companies are jumping on the bandwagon of data accessibility.
Artificial intelligence (AI) technology is not a new concept; in fact, it has been available for a while but has become increasingly more popular, and it is understandable as to why. Most notably, we are seeing an escalation in the use of AI technologies, such as bots or automated systems, to ensure great customer service and immediate responsiveness.
Real estate AI robots can serve as great virtual assistants and can determine the crucial difference between reaching a client and playing phone tag. This type of technology also allows for more free time for the real estate professional to focus on other tasks that may be a priority at that moment. AI is playing its part in virtual tools across the industry and can be used to create reminders, schedule meetings and search for data with the click of a button or at the sound of your voice.
For years, the MLS has used email automation to send potential clients new properties to keep them engaged and interested in the process, but automation can move far beyond a standardized MLS email blast. Automation can be used to help scale a real estate professional’s business operations by automating routine administrative tasks, responses to social media and online chats or even property management efforts, like accounting and rent invoicing. When it comes to automation, efficiency is key; thus, this time-saving gem can free up an agent’s busy schedule, allowing them to focus on higher priority tasks while remaining available to clients.
Internet leads have allowed companies to connect potential home shoppers to real estate agents with a click of a button, saving them time and hassle that typically accompanies a long, drawn-out process of finding an agent or new home. The beauty of this technology is that a home shopper is not limited by geography to find the right property or the right professional. As a professional, whether that is a real estate agent or investor, internet leads reduce the inconvenience of searching for and sifting through an endless number of leads. Instead of spending time and money going door-to-door to find potential clients, professionals can take advantage of easy and user-friendly lead searching.
There’s an app for that! Most real estate agents need access to information and data fast. Having the ability to access a CRM at their fingertips makes all the difference when trying to connect with a client, acquire more leads, and close a transaction while on the road. With the ability to access unlimited data and collaborate on opportunities from anywhere at any time, smartphone apps like ours can make efficiency a possibility, especially when an agent is on the move. Plus, technology like Zapier allows for direct integration to streamline leads and referrals directly into CRM software like HubSpot, Freshsales or Zillow Premier Agent.
While operations may be quite different from 10 years ago, no matter how advanced technology becomes, the real estate industry will never be able to eliminate the personal touch and interaction that is needed to close a transaction. From market data to digital paperwork, loan automation to AI bots, the process of buying and selling a home would not be effective without a real estate professional to facilitate the transaction, service a client and provide a positive experience. The technology solutions making their way into the real estate industry have enhanced client engagement, streamlined service efficiencies and increased business profitabilities, but they will never be able to replace the joy of the handshake upon closing a deal.
In a world where virtual communication is crucial for a business’s success, the real estate industry was late to hop aboard the technology train. However, technology innovation in the real estate industry is no longer an idea of the future; it’s here today and it’s here to stay.