Should You Be Advertising Your Listings on Zillow? Part One

In the months following its merger with Trulia, Zillow Group is looking to cash in on the benefits of its former rival. Currently, 63 percent of new real estate listings are from existing Zillow advertisers, but the megalithic realty site wants more. Over the next several years, it will be making its play for your real estate listing advertising dollars job number one – to the tune of spending about $100 million this year to grow its audience. Are you game?

The benefits:
Unlike most broker sites which feature only local MLS listings, Zillow has close to complete coverage in most markets, including every property – not just those for sale or rent. This is a huge boon to buyers searching by neighborhood, giving them access to nearly 100 percent of property data versus the roughly 3 percent of homes listed on the MLS. With the addition of Trulia, the benefits are even greater, including consumer – not agent driven – information such as neighborhood crime maps and crime density as well as a far more robust offering of data on schools, market trends, past sales, and more.

The drawbacks:
Aside from the most obvious, including inaccurate ‘Zestimates,’ incorrect data, and paying for the leads garnered from your own Zillow listings, Zillow is far from a real estate listing advertising utopia. Barclays sites slowing web traffic growth resulting from market saturation as a long-term concern, and Zillow’s termination of agreement with ListHub in April hasn’t helped matters, resulting in declined listings following the dissolution, putting Zillow behind as it attempts to duplicate ListHub’s comprehensive and accurate real estate listing advertising database. The merger itself has also sent customers on the hunt for alternatives.

Make sure to check back Thursday as we continue “Should You Be Advertising Your Listings on Zillow?”

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propsonlineJay Thompson Recent comment authors
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Jay Thompson

Jay T. from Zillow Group here.  Just wanted to take a moment to clear up some inaccuracies in your post. “…paying for the leads garnered from your own Zillow listings…”  Listing agents can post listings to Zillow and get on-listing page recognition as the listing agent, have a profile that includes links back to the agent’s website and social profiles and be locked into the top advertising slot on the listing — all for free. ” …Zillow’s termination of agreement with ListHub in April hasn’t helped matters, resulting in declined listings following the dissolution…” Zillow has signed direct feed agreements with… Read more »


Jay Thompson Thanks Jay for the added information.  I’m glad that Zillow is doing so well getting new advertisers. I am sure the stock holders will be happy to hear that. I was just reading this article in the WSJ

As far as the leads, are you saying that if a prospect fills out a lead form from a
listing on Zillow, the listing agent will get the lead? I was under the
impression that the agent paying for Zillow Pro got the lead. Is that
not the case?

Jay Thompson

propsonline – For listings where the listing agent is not a Zillow advertiser, the listing agent will be displayed along with 3 other advertising agents. Those advertising agents will change every time the page is refreshed, but the listing agent will remain locked into the top slot and appear there EVERY time the listing is displayed.  The consumer has the choice of which agent to select. Most consumers click through to the agent profiles to further investigate which agent they want to contact. So if the non-paying listing agent has a strong profile (which is also free) then consumers can (and… Read more »