Posts by Jess Maria (page 21)

Live Chat for Real Estate

Live Chat for Real Estate Website

As a real estate sales agent, developing lasting, trustworthy and confident relationships is a must. In person, this is probably something you cultivate on a daily basis. But how do you manage to build meaningful relationships on the internet? Adding live chat to your website might be the key.

Handy online tools, like those offered by Zopim, allow you to easily chat with visitors to your website, live, giving you an unprecedented way of connecting with your visitors and really meeting their needs.

And the best thing? Zopim can be easily and seamlessly integrated with your Properties Online agent website or your Listing Unlimited sites, meaning you can take advantage of this handy tool without having to re-do or re-make anything at all. Your existing site is all you need.

The world grows ever more mobile, and statistics show that more and more communication is taking place outside of traditional phone conversations. Make your website work for you, by providing a new way for your potential clients to contact and communicate with you.

No matter where you are, in or out of the office, you can remain logged in all day on your favorite Instant Messenger (GTalk, Yahoo IM, MSN, AIM, etc.), and can continue your chats on our mobile iOS app, with no one the wiser.

Staying on top of your real estate marketing campaigns is crucial. Live chat solutions can add to the convenience of advanced website statistics. Your Properties Online web stats are always live – you can see what’s happening right now – and they allow you to track not only where your visitors are coming from, but if they used a keyword to enter your website. Add-ons like live chat for real estate websites mean you can also identify your high-value visitors based on important information such as referrer, country, repeat visits, time on site, URL, chat content, etc.

Your website, your business – get your best results by harnessing unique and exciting digital technology. We’re always here to help!

Housing Market

The 2013 Housing Market – It’s Good News

2013 is already shaping up to be a promising year for the U.S. housing market. A favorable end to 2012, thanks to a strong rebound in the market, have led RE/MAX Co-Founder and Chairman Dave Liniger to go on the record with his top ten predictions for the coming 12 months.

“Although interest rates have been at historic lows, they have not been the driving force behind this recovery. There’s no single factor driving this market; it’s been a combination of low prices, low inventory, improving consumer confidence and a huge pent-up demand. That was true throughout 2012 and will continue to be true in 2013,” Liniger says.

Liniger has gone as far as saying that 2013 will be the best year in real estate in many years (yay!), but a fragile, obstacle laced recovery is not yet complete.

Liniger’s top 10 predictions, revealed via a video presentation, are:

1. More homebuyers and sellers will come back to the market
2. Homes sales will rise by 6-7% and prices will rise by 3-4%
3. The inventory of homes for sale will hit a bottom
4. Higher priced homes will begin to sell
5. Distressed property numbers will continue to fall
6. Shadow inventory will continue to fall
7. The number of short sale closings will rise to a peak
8. Record low mortgage rates will rise slightly by year-end
9. Lending will remain tight
10. Home affordability to remain the best in years

“If housing can stay on the road to recovery, it’s possible that it can pull the rest of the economy along with it,” he says enthusiastically.

Top 10 Housing Predictions for 2013 by David Liniger

evernote for real estate

How Evernote can be Ever so Helpful to a Real Estate Agent

Too many things on your plate? Struggling with bits of scrap paper, notes drawn on napkins and reminders haphazardly loaded into your phone? With Evernote, you can do away with all of that.

Basic Evernote service is free, and premium service is just $45 per year, or $5 per month. As a real estate agent, you’ll find dozens of ways to use Evernote, so even at the premium rate, it’s a bargain.

Evernote is unique and highly useable because it allows you to save, search and retrieve information from incredibly varied formats and sources – PDFs, images, web pages, sound files, and more. The web-based software uses OCR technology to search text in images, meaning that anything you save in Evernote from your phone, tablet, mobile device or computer becomes searchable later.

With Evernote you can:

  •  CAPTURE & REMEMBER EVERYTHING. Save everything you see online and in the real world. Snap a photo, record some audio and save it.
  • ACCESS IT FROM ANYWHERE. Evernote can be used on any computer, phone or mobile device you have.
  • FIND THINGS FAST. Search by keyword, tag, or even printed or handwritten text inside images.
  • MANAGE TRANSCRIBED TEXT. Using services with transcribed text, such as Google Voice, Callwave, Jott becomes even better. Simply forward to your Evernote transaction note book, and a link to the audio goes with it.
  • KEEP EVERYTHING IN SYNC. With Evernote, all of your notes, web clips, files and images are made available on every device and computer you use.
  • SAVE FAVORITE WEB PAGES. Save entire webpages to your Evernote account with our nifty web clipper browser extensions. You get the whole page: text, images and links.
  • RESEARCH BETTER. Collect information from anywhere into a single place. From text notes to web pages to files to snapshots, everything is always at your fingertips.
  • MANAGE REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS. When a transaction closes, you can save all notes, from all formats, into a folder to html, then print to one document in date order. You can then save all closed transaction folder notes in Evernote format to hard drive or CD for retrieval later, without having to save the entire note book.
  • WORK WITH FRIENDS & COLLEAGUES. Share your notes and collaborate on projects with friends, colleagues and classmates.
  • AUTOMATE. Monitor and auto-sync with folders on your computer to copy documents to notes automatically.

For a busy real estate professional, Evernote is one of those online tools that is truly a godsend. You’ll find scores of other handy uses for the tool, beyond those listed about.

What are some of your favorite technology tools?

Google Plex

Google tools for real estate professionals

We’ve talked previously about the NAR statistic that 87% of prospective home buyers start their search online. And for most web users, Google remains the default search engine. In fact, it is the most-used search engine for researching and purchasing real estate information and services. Google tools for real estate professionals can be used  to let you reach prospects in your region at all stages of their home search – while they’re looking for properties, checking out locations, and selecting an agent or broker?

Google’s Real Estate Tools can help to connect you to both buyers and sellers by:

  •  Generating real estate referrals and leads;
  • Taking advantage of Google’s extensive reach (The search engine has more real estate searches than other search engines combine, and more unique visitors than all real estate specific websites); and
  • Connecting you with the Google Network, which extends to over 80% of internet users in the United States.

Google Tools for real estate agents and brokers can help you drive leads, connect and engage with customers, and save time and money.

Here’s how:

  •  Set up a Google+ profile to promote your business, boost your search engine rankings and more.
  • Create and maintain a branded YouTube channel. YouTube viewers are 90% more likely to obtain information about real estate online than the average American.
  • Enhance your online listing with Google SketchUp. Model your properties in Google SketchUp and give your clients a 3D view, and allow customers to freely explore the home, community and its surroundings in 3D, right from your website.
  • List your business with Google Places. You can submit multiple locations with a data file and conveniently manage and control listings.
  • Publish your listings on Google Earth.
  • Use Google Maps free, and make your listings easier for home-buyers and real estate agents to find when they look for properties on “Over 56% of all Internet searches on ‘real estate’ and related terms are conducted on Google and our partner sites, and the majority of those searchers are actively looking for listings or referrals to brokers and agents,” says Google.
  • Use Google Maps API to place interactive maps on your own website.
  • Try pay-as-it’s-used marketing, with Google AdWords, and get real time ROI, with conversion tracking data. Track your campaign’s progress, and modify or halt it at any time.
  • Try Gmail and Google Apps web-based email, calendar and document management, accessible from just about anywhere.
Scan Me QR Reader

What on Earth is a QR Code?

So, what exactly is a QR code?

If you’re like many, you’re probably wondering what on Earth is a QR Code, and what’s it good for? “QR Code (abbreviated from Quick Response Code) is the trademark for a type of matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code) first designed for the automotive industry. More recently, the system has become popular outside the industry due to its fast readability and large storage capacity compared to standard UPC barcodes. The code consists of black modules (square dots) arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The information encoded can be made up of four standardized kinds (“modes”) of data (numeric, alphanumeric, byte/binary, Kanji), or through supported extensions, virtually any kind of data.”

Got that? Yeah, me neither.

Check out this fantastic video from ScanChannel to get up to speed:

QR Codes are growing in popularity as advertising tools due to ever increasing smartphone usage. A QR Code allows potential buyers to use their own smartphone as a barcode reader, providing quick and effortless access to your website. Why is this awesome? It has been proven to increase conversion rates, by moving qualified prospects further down the sale/conversion funnel, seamlessly and in a way they’ve chosen to interact.