After a nearly ten-year hiatus tech giant Google appears to have begun re-engaging face-to-face with the property industry.
During the late noughties there was an outcry when it appeared that Google might begin targeting consumers directly and cut out agents from the property selling and renting process, although this was denied by the tech giant at the time.
Nevertheless, the Californian-based online search firm subsequently scaled down its attempts to court the ‘for sale by owner’ sector and concentrated instead on other markets, much to the relief of agents.
But now it’s back. The tech giant this week opened the doors of its UK head office to host a meeting of estate agents to mull over how to get instructions online.
One of Google’s more senior UK executives, Harvard-educated Roxanne Brownlee (pictured), who works with larger, high-growth clients, did the presenting.
Google, along with digital agency Fountain and 24/7 live managed live chat firm Yomdel, also offered up online strategies to help combat the challenges of competition from online hybrid agents, the privacy issues created by GDPR and Brexit.
And Fountain should know – it helped hybrid agency Ewemove achieve rapid growth during its start-up phase.
“Yomdel and Fountain began working together on EweMove in 2014, and since then we have developed unique approaches to generating quality traffic and then turning [it] into high-converting business opportunities,” says Yomdel founder Andy Soloman.
“It’s a complete no-brainer for any business – invest in getting the right clicks as well as ensuring you also put in place the ability to maximise conversion.”
Senior industry figures from dozens of leading estate agents attended the event including those from Knight Frank, Hunters, Carter Jonas, Miles & Barr and Arun Estates, all of whom were ushered into its deck-chair strewn UK offices to hear from Google how to generate more direct traffic to their websites and convert it into instructions.