By Alexa Jaccarino
Search “real estate” in the app store for iPad and iPad 2, and you receive upwards of 700 results. Download a few, and at your fingertips will be a world of real estate listings to peruse, instant access to virtual home tours and mortgage calculators, and perhaps most importantly, the availability of constant communication between you and your clients, where you can literally watch as they compile their property preferences.
If the impending launch of the iPad 3 signals nothing else, it is that tablet technology—once looked at as a recreational technology—is here to stay, and consequently, to solidify the change in buyer’s behavior and the way realtors do business.
Technology’s Influence on Buyer Behavior
The iPad itself is a symbol of the way consumer culture operates today: it is a place where one can fluidly navigate all things personal and professional, including shopping, socializing, watching, reading, presenting, and researching.
With 63% of American consumers claiming to have walked through a home that they found on an Internet search, and the number of iPad users only growing, realtors should be recognizing and capitalizing on the incredible value it brings to their business.
Success with Social Media
Today’s most successful real estate brokers and agents attribute much of their recent growth to their integrated presence across all social media outlets, constantly driving users between their website, social pages, and engaging apps. Realtor.com, for instance, has over 27,000 Facebook fans, claims to reach more than 6 million Twitter users every month, and hosts a YouTube channel.
The real estate industry’s top producers are actively connecting with existing and potential customers via social media. What is driving their success? The key is to share engaging content consistently across multiple social networks, along with real estate media platforms, such as BrokerPulse.com.
A few weeks ago we released a list of digital trends and predictions for 2012, emphasizing how simply existing on social media platforms is not enough for brokers and agents to generate measurable results. Overall, it is the quality and frequency of content distribution that is essential for any realtor to achieve sustained success with social media.
Top-rated real estate apps for iPad: Realtor.com, Zillow & Trulia
All three of these iPad apps offer consumers customized searches by price, number of beds/baths, geographic area, information about open houses and nearby attractions, essentially allowing a greater feeling of control over their home-buying experience, while brokers benefit from reaching their clients in the most immediate way possible by instantly uploading new home listings, price changes, and other relevant information.
As a real estate professional, you should be aware of the type of technology that your customers are using to search for properties. If your primary demographic is browsing via mobile technology in addition to web searches, you should also be utilizing a smartphone-friendly capability when marketing your property listings.
If you foresee your customers being iPad 3 users, adapting to the search-style of this new model will be important. According to MSN Real Estate, 18% percent of the house hunting on Trulia takes place with mobile devices, and that number may grow quickly.
It is evident that technology’s latest advances have reshaped the real estate business dynamic, and will continue to do so. As a broker or agent, keeping up with the changes of your tech savvy clients is critical. Otherwise, you run the risk of losing lose them to the competition that makes it a point to do so.
Predictions for the iPad 3 Launch: Increased Connection, Communication and Visibility
Rumor has it that once unveiled, the iPad 3 will feature such specs as a new display with double the resolution of the iPad 2, a faster processor, and more memory. Altogether, this is expected to further enhance consumers’ digital home search experience, and bring added business benefits to those realtors who adapt to the advances.
Despite negative housing reports, app-driven real estate shopping is growing exponentially in today’s market, especially as consumer interaction is synched in real-time with all of their other devices. As a broker, tapping into immediate information from this limited pool of business is certainly a competitive advantage to be capitalized on.
This increased capacity for connection, communication and visibility among brokers and consumers will be seen with the launch of Apple’s iPad 3. Just as its predecessors, the new model’s convenient functionality will also assist brokers with administrative tasks, such as tracking clients’ property interests, viewing history, and showing schedules .
Growing your business? There’s sure to be an iPad 3 app for that.