It is safe to say that what any business person would expect as a result of such a turbulent period as the Covid-19 pandemic, would be a significant crisis in nearly every economic sector available. After all, dealing with long periods of quarantine and lockdowns from commerce is not an easy thing to do, and definitely not something that owners were prepared to do.
But as it turns out, the reality it’s much different from what it seems, at least for some areas. One of those is the Real Estate commerce, which found itself unexpectedly succeeding during the most financially difficult period in years.
In this article, we’ll explain why the Covid-19 crisis changed the landscape of business and boost the Real Estate digital transformation and what we should expect for the future of this business.
The unexpected digital transformation during the pandemic
The most recent statistics available reveal that homebuying power has increased 21% between 2020 and 2021, unexpectedly flying against strong winds of high prices and inflation due to the pandemic.
The opportunities for the Real Estate market during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic emerged rapidly and strongly in what can be named as one of the best years in this area. And if we take a closer look at the new trends and lifestyle taken in order to adapt to these turbulent times, it’s actually not difficult to see why this sudden boom happened.
By the end of 2020, 70% of people had started to work remotely due to the burst of the covid. Not only that, but the spreaded lockdowns and quarantines pushed millions of people to be confined inside their houses for, at that point, an undefined period.
That means that people started to spend their entire days and nights at home more than ever before, and started to realize that a well adapted house can be just as efficient - if not even more - as a professional office provided by their companies. And let’s be honest: that solution is way better than driving 30 minutes to get to the workplace.
Being daily confined inside the house was the inciting event that made most people migrate into the digital world. A 2020 report by Mckinsey highlighted the online consumer's growth for the household category by 30% in 2020.
And in order to keep up with the rising demand from customers and their new digitized mindset that was brought up with the pandemic, real estate agencies had to run after all the necessary tools like never before. Investments in technology are now likely to be the main focus of financial budgets in most companies around the world, all in order not to fall behind and lose the game.
One thing is for certain: those companies that failed to adopt technology into their business were not able to perform nearly as well as those who did. Moreover, that race after new digital tools is so dramatic that the numbers show that a year of pandemic accelerated the digitalization of the real estate business by an impressive three to four years.
What does this change mean?
The pandemic boosted up what already was there in the digital universe, bringing whatever still hadn’t migrated to it in the process. The practicality of working, buying, renting and dealing through the micro universe inside our cell phones or laptops was already there, but gained momentum with the necessity of adapting to a new reclusive lifestyle.
With this constantly evolving technology, the Real Estate market has been finding a wide range of new possibilities to improve the field, creating smart digital solutions for clients.
A great example of a groundbreaking solution is how Nomad Homes is working to create a new real estate buying digital platform for Europe, in which clients can take a “style quiz” in order to find the most compatible properties and thus simplifying the homebuying experience.
Similarly, in order to get consumers to find the ideal house through their mobile devices, Casa Blanca launched a successful app that can match home buyers with their prefered houses, almost like a dating app.
This is only a few examples of how agents and entrepreneurs can use technological resources to get creative and make a difference in the market, developing effective tools that will attend customer’s pains and continue to evolve the real estate niche.
The new digitalized era of the market is here to show that traditional strategies are no longer as effective as before, since adopting new technologies into the business it’s now a crucial factor to stand out and gain effective results in the market.
Keep in mind that sometimes a simple digital tool is already enough to completely change the workflow and profit results. Agents are now applying technologies to simplify everyday tasks of the business, such as getting a Customer Relationship Management System (CRM) and automation tools to optimize the work - digital signatures options, for example.
These and other effective changes by adopting technology into business are necessary for the current high demand of digital solutions on the house buying process, that goes from the type of communication with the agent to the final purchasing action.
Therefore, it’s easy to understand that adopting digital tools it's like planting a seed and watching it grow - you'll start seeing the results gradually and better each day.
What to expect next
Time could easily be redefined now as Before Covid and After Covid, as businesses had to find smart ways to adapt to this new era. And the smartest way to adapt to it was undoubtedly through technology.
With the increasing migration of consumers to the online space, investing on a digital real estate platform is a highly profitable option at the moment, as studies prove that the online home buying trend has reached up to 90% of the consumers today - especially millennials.
And thus, the most accessible and simplified way to invest in new digital resources businesses are finding is by hiring outsourced companies to design and develop the ideal platforms and tools, all in order to achieve more effective and lasting results.
This is by taking in consideration that companies that are investing in technology are one step ahead of those that are not, watching their profits grow significantly compared to their competitors along with the market's changes.
Growing stronger in the real estate business, important social and economic matters such as sustainability and energy saving are already rising as important factors for the home buying experience.
As the conversation about climate changes and decarbonization are gaining weight on people, it is natural that buyers look for environmental awareness when finding a house, and digital solutions are most required to attend to such needs from clients.
One of the real estate startups adapting to these new trends is Kapacity.io, which is implementing artificial intelligence to help boost clean energy usage in buildings. Their software is an innovative way to integrate digital solutions into concrete results, which is a smart advancement for the future of the branch.
In addition to the clean energy technological solutions, AI is being a great ally for other innovations in the real estate market for different areas. The benefits of artificial intelligence can also be used to help analysing data aiming for faster work for realtors, something Moderne Ventures has been successfully applying in their business, for example.
Another trend that surfaced with the increasing accessibility of digital tools is the clients approach. More than ever before companies are understanding the necessity of tech implementation in their relationship and efficient communication with clients, as most are now likely to say that about 80% of their interactions with customers are digital ones after the pandemic.
Building trust with clients has never been something easy in any profession, but it is especially hard when it comes to the real estate industry. And although this challenge has been perpetuated even during the digitalized era of the homebuying market, one of the trends for shopping and making deals online is looking for the clients' reviews for the services provided.
With the now established digitalized era for real estate, this trend comes only as an advantage considering the customers want a reliable professional to handle their big investments. Now it's time for agents to include and take advantage of the client's online reviews for their website or platform in order to guarantee their credibility.
In summary, the next trends that the Real Estate market should keep an eye open for includes:
Outsourcing digital solutions and developments to achieve more effective results
Implementing technological tools for the new sustainable real estate market
Increasing application of artificial intelligence into real estate solutions
Customers-agents communication growing in a more digital nature
Implementing online reviews in real estate digital platforms
New trends means new challenges
For entrepreneurs who are still relying on traditional models to operate their business, the increasing competition from digitized professionals might be the main challenge they are about to face in the next few years.
Having an online presence is one of the important features that most clients will be looking for, and whoever fails to understand this new era of digital business might not be able to keep up with the market trends.
Owners will have trouble figuring out how to digitize the business. Moreover, each business is unique and will need a unique digital solution that will be "honed" just for its needs. However, most of the owners are non-technical and have no experience in creating such a digital solution.
Therefore, it is extremely important to find a reliable software development partner who has relevant experience.
Adapting to the newest digital strategies and tools available that other real estate agents are using is a challenge that many realtors are facing, as many are struggling to understand the new technologies, but it's a necessary change to be aware of.
For example, virtual tours and video marketing are trending now more than ever as it offers an easier way for clients to see a house before investing their money in it.
This and other online options are only about to increase in potential clients' preference, as the new worldwide mindset is about the practicality of the digital world. So now the task is to provide modern solutions with the traditional good quality service of the real estate business.
4 insights on how to adapt to the real estate digital transformation
In a deep ocean of new trends and mindsets, it is very easy to get lost and swim in the wrong direction, even if we believe we’re doing it right. This is even more frequent to happen when talking about the technological world, where there are constant changes and updates that makes it even harder to keep track of what is going on.
The new real Estate digital era might be confusing for some people, so it’s important to understand what to do to not lose your mind during this important transformation in the market.
To help you with that, here’s 4 insights on how to better adapt to the real estate digital transformation:
Get the right digital tools
As we already highlighted, efficient digital tools that can optimize your workflow are essential to get better results in the technological era of the real estate market. From our experience, an innovative idea for the development of a technological online tool can bring multiple long-lasting results both for your financial outcomes and for the customer’s experience with your services.
Don’t hesitate to take risks and invest in your ideas for new digital work tools. Be it a client-seller communication app, a paper organization software or any other innovative method of getting things done more efficiently, there is always a way to develop new or improved softwares for businesses.
Keeping an eye open for the trends
Just like skipping a recipe and cooking by improvising is a dangerous move to be made, not studying the latest trends in the digital world and guiding the business without concrete market analysis is a shot in your own foot.
The online technological esphere is in constant change as new digital solutions emerge and the customer’s mindsets shift to different directions. Staying sharp to those new trends is what can differentiate you from your competitors, as adopting and creating new softwares to keep up with digital evolutions is an important factor for better results.
Be quick to adapt to those trends by always aiming to improve your technological resources, investing in solutions that will accompany your customer’s +s.
Investing in an user-friendly platform
Investing in an user-friendly online platform it's a pivotal point in order to succeed in any professional digital presence.
Clients will be undeniably more satisfied and willing to contact a provider when their online platform is fluid and includes carefully thought and well crafted functionalities that allows them to be immersed in it without having complications while visiting it.
It's important to invest in a good software company that will be able to develop an efficient platform, which includes all the important and necessary information about your work.
Designing an aesthetically pleasing appearance that will transparency your own personality and work philosophy is also important for the overall results, so don’t forget to think about the design and the colors.
In summary, a clean, easy to understand and fast platform is essentially what user-friendly should be, and what you should be aiming for now.
Adopting mobile strategies
Researchers have pointed out that 76% of homebuyers are now using their smartphones or tablets in the process, even opting for more simplified ways of communicating with the companies via efficient apps and mobile tools.
That is why it is so important to keep in mind that adopting mobile strategies such as investing and even creating new apps to better attend to your customer's needs is going to make all the difference.
On changing the digital real estate’s game
It might be hard to track and understand all of the significant new digital changes in such a traditional market, we know it. But this transformation surely came to teach a valuable lesson for the technological world: always expect the unexpectable.
On the other hand, it's also an undeniable cheerful surprise to find a ray of sunshine in the middle of the wild storm that was the Covid-19 pandemic, seeing that the real estate market found success when they least imagined it.
But there is still a long way to go. There's still a few technological barriers to overcome in order to really get the Real Estate into its best digital version possible.
If you want to know more about how to get your ideas for the real estate's digital evolution to work, contact us and be a part of this transformation!