Propertynews.com has helped NI Estate Agents sell and let more properties than any other website since our launch. Throughout this time, we have tried to create the best property listing templates that we can, whilst leaving scope for customisation from Estate Agents.
This wealth of experience, combined with our award-winning innovation in understanding user behaviour on-site, has allowed us to develop a series of best practice tips and guides to help generate leads on your properties.
View our top tips below.
1. High-resolution images
Users expect and demand high-quality imagery, just look at the growth of sales in high-definition televisions for example. To showcase your property in the best light, Propertynews can display your property images in the highest resolution available. We have experimented with low v high resolution images, and results show that listings with higher-resolution photos generate more interest, in terms of being shortlisted, and driving more call and email leads.
2. Quantity & quality of images
The general rule of thumb is, the more images the greater the chance of generating a lead, although there is an upper limit to the amount of images a website user will tolerate. User feedback has highlighted frustration with properties that have less than 10 photos, particularly when there are rooms listed in the description without a photo. Users comment that they presume the property has something unsightly to hide.
Another recommendation would be to have a good mix of interior and exterior photos, and to show a back garden, even if it needs attention. Some buyers have told us they actively seek out a “blank canvas” to make their own.
Professional photography is also a must, although this is generally adhered to by our agents.
3. Consider an aerial view of the property
Innovative agents have already utilised drone technology to help create a unique view of their properties. Particularly relevant for larger properties with gardens and land, the drone imagery gives buyers with a unique perspective of the property and can really make the listing stand out from search results pages.
This image for example, would have an immediate “wow” appeal due to the size, scale and pool feature viewed from above.
4. Kerb Appeal
First impressions are key. On a potential buyers approach they may make an instant judgement on the property from the exterior. Even before stepping inside the property, potential buyers are already forming an impression. It is important that everything is done to avoid a bad first impression.
The front garden should be clean and tidy and, particularly in spring time, flowers can help create an inviting impression. Agents should advise vendors when window frames and doors could be re-painted.
From an online perspective, a frontal lead image of the property is always advantageous, but also remember that many potential buyers will use Google Street View to check out the street and surrounding area.
5. Darkness & lighting
Brightness is key with property images online; dark images create a negative first impression. Consider taking photos at midday or schedule photography on days that have a clear weather forecast, it can make all the difference with potential buyers.
Also, we can see several live properties on propertynews.com with bleak and gloomy exterior photos because of the weather, including a few with frost on cars etc. It would enhance the property to re-take the photos on these bright spring mornings.
6. Printable & downloadable brochures
At Propertynews, we advise agents to accomodate for different types of uses. Our demographic profiling shows we have users 18-80 who use our website. Some like to sign-up as members and have an electronic shortlist of favourited properties, others like to print of brochures as shortlist via hard copies.
It is crucial that you accomodate for all types of users.
7. Clear & Contextual Selling Points
Some buyers know what they want, others need inspiration. This could be determined by the stage of the house buying process a buyer is at. Sure, list the rooms and the features, but it helps to put these features into context. Who would this property suit, in context of the area it is situated and with the potential for improvements etc?
“This property has a beautiful garden with recently installed decking making this a great summer family area“,
“This property has a converted roofspace could suit a growing family with the need for a children’s play area” etc.
8. Accurate mapping & exposure to searches
Using the Propertynews area picker to make the property available in as many searches as possible is crucial to get the greatest exposure for your properties. Also it is key to use the correct address and check this on the map location. When a user click on street view, it should be in the correct location.
From our internal analysis we can see that an alarming proportion of users leave a property brochure page when the street view location is incorrect.
Also, for the greatest exposure, ensure property details are fully-completed, such as bedrooms and reception rooms. Leaving these blank will mean properties will not be included in search results. e.g. If a user searches for properties with 2 reception rooms, results displayed will only include properties that meet the criteria with the completed information. Please speak with the Propertynews support team to ensure your property information is correct whether you manually upload or use a feed.
9. 360 photos and video walkthroughs
Technology evolves and so does the expectations of users. Where viable, 360 degree photography and video walkthroughs should be used, to not only make your property stand out in listings, but also to provide the potential buyer with much more information they need about a property.
Instead of an initial prospect viewing, the potential buyer, having viewed a video walkthrough or 360 degree photography, may have had several queries answered and will be further along the buying process and much closer to making a bid.
10. Feature your property
Featuring your property on Propertynews.com can increase the views by 300%, significantly increasing the exposure and helping generate more leads. To find out more about featuring your property. including via our social media platforms, contact our team.
11. Tips to advise vendors
Selling a property can be a joint venture. View below our advice to home owners to help assist in the selling of their property.