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Guest post from Becca Dwyer- How estate agents could boost their revenue.

14 February 2012

"UK estate and letting agents could miss opportunities with half of their potential customer base, simply because they don’t have a mobile web site, or web app."

By: Becca Dwyer, Sky Communications International on behalf of Eurolink Technology Ltd.
PR Account Manager at Sky Communications

Statistics show that UK estate agents and letting agents could miss opportunities with half of their potential customer base, simply because they don’t have a mobile web site, or web app,” according to Richard Murray, director of the property industry’s leading IT firm, Eurolink.

Survey figures show that 45% of Internet users connect to the Internet via a mobile phone(1) and that after looking up a business on their smart phone, 61% called the business and 59% visited it.(2) Yet amazingly, nearly all UK estate agent websites do not have the function to be easily read or navigated from all smart phones. Given that approximately 15% of all web traffic is mobile, not having the appropriate mobile website is the equivalent of closing a website down for one day each week, (Google, February 2011).

Eurolink, the leading UK-based property software innovator, reveals that the new mobile web apps for estate agents and house builders are much better, more cost-effective and will dramatically increase enquiries. Eurolink is offering agents at next month’s ARLA Conference, the chance to win a FREE personalised app. Details to be revealed soon on www.eurolink.co

This new mobile technology offers access to a larger target audience than the old native mobile applications. Native apps are specific to individual operating systems and therefore only work on specific handsets, such as the iPhone or Blackberry ranges – not both. Mobile web app technology on the other hand, transcends the handset preferences of customers by being available to all who wish to view it.

Richard comments: “Members of the property industry are generally aware of the importance of mobile technology in expanding their customer base. In fact, providing mobile formatted or mobile specific content can increase customer conversions by 75 per cent.” (3)

This research suggests that companies who ignore the development of web app technology and stick with native apps will severely restrict their audience reach and the overall efficiency of their application.

Benefits associated with mobile web apps include:

  • Access to a greater audience
  • Fast and inexpensive development in comparison to native applications
  • The option to provide the app directly, without the need for a subscription or download
  • Web applications are easier to update and amend than native apps. Any change made to a web app is done via a central server and rolled out to users uniformly; the update almost untraceable. Fixes to native apps however, require access to a user’s personal handset, which means each fix is publicised to the user and it can also lead to usage restrictions that directly inconvenience the customer
  • Increased web visibility, which can also assist in the development of the company’s search engine optimisation (SEO)

While less widely developed than native applications, web apps are becoming increasingly popular with users. In November 2011, The Financial Times’ web app reached over one million users, becoming more popular than its native equivalent in just five short months.

According to The FT, the app features continual and automatic content downloads and improvements which ensures that FT customers can access content anytime, anywhere, on a PC and multiple devices, with one login and one subscription payment. This significantly boosts mobile and web traffic and readers are more engaged and more likely to subscribe. (4)

Eurolink Technology Ltd is the UK’s leading property management software development company, established in 1990. It is best known for pioneering the 'onesystem' software concept, which allows multi-practice estate agencies to combine one or more of their business systems into a unified Veco-onesystem™ CRM solution. This innovative software is designed to be efficient, affordable and is adapted and tailored to suit individual businesses’ needs.

Eurolink is one of the UK’s only developers of mobile web apps specifically for the property industry. Its interest in the technology evolved after its team recognised that many property professionals neglected a huge portion of potential clients, purely because of their clients’ personal phone choices. The company now fills a niche in the property technology market, making it possible for all property professionals to make the most of latest technology.

Richard adds: “There is an exciting future for web apps ahead. Recent developments have given web apps the ability to use augmented reality technology (AR) just like a native app. In the next few years, web apps could have access to handset functions too,(5) including cameras, GPS systems and address books. The possibilities for client communications here are conducive to increasing conversion rates and customer relationship development.”

For more details on mobile web app development and the other services offered by Eurolink Technology Ltd, please visit www.eurolink.co or call 0137 2389 250

ENDS

Sources:

(1) The Office for National Statistics: “45% of internet users used a mobile phone to connect to the Internet,” August 2011.

(2) The Kelsey Group, 2010 and Google Behavioural Study, 2010: After looking up a business on their smart phone, 61% called the business and 59% visited.

(3) Microsoft: "Providing mobile formatted or mobile specific content can increase conversions by 75%” 2010.

(4) The FT, Press Office Blog, 18th November 2011:
http://aboutus.ft.com/2011/11/18/ft-web-app-registers-one-million-users/#axzz1j3fBlfol

(5) HTML5Rocks, HTML5 vs. Native - The Mobile App Debate, 3rd June 2011:

http://www.html5rocks.com/en/mobile/nativedebate.html#toc-native-can-do-more

 

 

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