The popularity of online estate agents when it comes to selling homes is on the increase, according to a new survey.
The ‘State of the Property Nation 2018 report’ published by online portal Zoopla surveyed 660 estate and letting agents, and 6,000 property owners and renters across Britain.
The findings show that 24% of consumers used an online estate agent in the last year. That’s double the amount as compared to 3-5 years ago.
Additionally, when asked about which type of agent they may use in the future, 46% of consumers said they were ‘likely’ to use an online estate agent the next time they sell. A further 34% were still ‘unsure’ and only 11% thought it was ‘unlikely’ they would use an online agent.
The move towards online can also be seen in the rental market with 44% of landlords saying they’re likely to consider using an online letting agent next time, an increase of 10% from 2017.
The results will be welcome to news to the online industry and undergoing several well-published difficulties over the previous few weeks.
Agents Not Aligned With Consumer Demands
Perhaps part of the rise of popularity of online estate agents comes from a misalignment of what estate agents believe customers want, and what customers actually say they want.
The annual survey found that ‘good local reputation’ is what agents believe sellers want most. Yet, ‘transparency and openness about fees and the process’ is what consumers say they want most.
In fact, this was the most important factor for both those who have sold online and those who have sold via any means.
Online Agents Winning The Customer ‘Satisfaction’ War
According to the results of the survey, those who sold via an online estate agent tend to be more satisfied with the service they received than those who used traditional high street estate agents.
Some 41% of people who used online estate agents were ‘Very Satisfied’ with the service they received.
Compare this to those who used traditional high street agents where only 27% said they were ‘Very Satisfied’. Though, high street estate agents with an online offering fared slightly better with 31% being ‘Very Satisfied’ with their service.
The survey goes on to look at several other factors affecting the property market including the economic outlook, consumer, landlord and renter needs, and the geographic differences affecting the UK market.
The full report can be accessed here.