Differentiation as a Real Estate Business Building Strategy

Do a local search for real estate agents or websites and take a look at 5-10 of them. The chances are that you'll see a whole lot of the same stuff. Sure, you do want some components that are critically important:

  • IDX search function
  • Local real estate information
  • Descriptions of your services

However, look at them again and see if you can find differences that make one site stand out against the others. Differentiation is how you can reinforce your professionalism and position yourself as a local real estate expert. Some of it is in your marketing, and some of it is in how you work with customers. All should be marketed and described on your website. Let's look at some differentiation strategies.

1
Protecting Your Clients' Information

Laptop with chains and padlocks.
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In today's high-tech world, real estate transactions have taken on an online component that can put your clients' privacy and information at risk. Even if you believe you have your systems in place with adequate protection, are you telling your clients and website visitors what you're doing?

In this article, we look at some online document storage and sharing tools and how to protect the documents while you're able to share them with others involved in the transaction. If you're working on a paid integrated platform, dig into how privacy is protected.

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2
Absorption Rate as a Secret Weapon

Absorption Rates on Computer
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Calling absorption rate a secret weapon relates to the fact that very few real estate professionals, even if they know what it is and how to calculate it, are using it on their websites to generate leads.

Absorption rate is used by appraisers since the housing crash to help determine if a market is static, declining or rising. This is a requirement in appraisal reports and setting valuation.

It's not difficult to calculate, and everything you need is in your MLS online reporting data. Explaining what it is to your website visitors and why it is important will gain you expertise points.

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3
Real Estate Statistics Rock!

Female home owner checking real estate statistics.
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Everybody likes market statistics. Sellers want to know how the market is moving, as they want to know their chances of getting their home sold quickly at an acceptable price. Buyers want to know the same information to make home selection and buying decisions:

  • Number of homes sold in measured period
  • Homes sold by price range
  • Sold stats by MLS area
  • Listings demographics; number of listings by price range
  • Absorption rate

Everything you need in the way of data to prepare reports that you can offer on your website for lead generation is in your online MLS system.

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4
Signs That Sell Properties, Not Agents

Couple sitting in front of a new home.
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Before you dismiss this article, it is true that signs must comply with your brokerage, licensing and possibly franchise requirements. This can still be valuable information, as you can ask if you can use an additional sign. That way you have the approved one and a customized one. With that in mind, read on.

Too many real estate signs are selling the franchise, brokerage and agent. Most have absolutely no information about the home or property, except possibly a rider with a word or two.

In this article, we see how to create a custom sign at a reasonable price that actually gives the drive-by customer a look inside the home.

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5
Add the Investor Niche to Your Business

Hispanic businesswoman investor
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You will find very few real estate websites with a page or more dedicated to attracting investor clients. Active investors offer some advantages. They do not need hand-holding. They are market-savvy and your value to them is in handling the transaction efficiently. You won't be answering a lot of questions, just getting the job done. What do you offer in the way of value to an investor? They want a real estate professional who:

  • Understands their investment objectives and expends the effort to locate properties that fit.
  • Will present all offers, even very low offers, to the sellers or their agents without complaint.
  • Understand that the ratio of deals to offers will be low, but that the contract offers will still require less time and effort than showing dozens of properties to a home buyer or couple.

It can't hurt to have ready deals dropped into your lap without showing a bunch of properties.

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Be Different - Not One of the Pack

Constantly evaluate your services and the marketing you do to see how you can present yourself differently to prospects online and off.