At The Property Jungle we are often asked what the latest and greatest tools are for property based web sites and we are pleased to list here some of the enhancements that we have found make the most difference and add the most value.
Travel Time Search
Travel Time Search lets your customers find properties using travel times rather than miles.
For example they tell the search where they need to get to work, how long they are prepared to commute and by which method, car, foot or public transport. Your site then displays either a map or a list of properties that can be lived in - and still get to work on time.
The traditional “5 miles radius of….” method fails to recognise different road speeds at different times of day. 5 miles can take 5 minutes or half an hour depending on traffic conditions and road speed limits.
Travel Time Search can bring a wider selection of properties to the attention of your customers because it understands this.
Countrywide increased their search to enquiry conversion rate by 300% because of this. Why not power up your search and get a greater selection of potential new places to live into the hands of your applicants?
Try it for yourself here at Lawrence Rand Estate Agents.
Schools & Amenity Data
Give your customers the location information they need most.
Describing the property, showing it on a map and showing pictures of it is just scratching the surface when it comes to really selling a property and its location. The amenities around it are as important if not more. Local schools, shopping, leisure facilities and more all play a vital part in the deliberations that any prospective purchaser or tenant will make.
We are able to supply comprehensive data sets which provide your home movers with the right local amenity information to help them make informed decisions.
The schools information we provide has proved to be hugely beneficial. We can generate a map for every property showing where it is and then where the schools are immediately around it. We can then show the OFSTED performance data for each school. This is updated every year and is hugely useful to buyers, tenants, vendors and landlords alike.
It also works terrifically well for an agent as a listing tool. Many clients using this have been able to win listings from new homes developers by having this available on their sites. Many have also been able to secure themselves relocation work, again because of the valuable information they are making available.
Automatic Email Alerts
For many agents, particularly those that are not using Estate Agency software, our ability to send Email Alerts brings a huge advantage.
By completing a form on the web site to register for alerts a visitor can define what sort of property they are looking for. This is then securely stored in the database and whenever a property that meets their criteria is added to the site an attractive html email is sent to the applicant with a link back to that property.
The agent using this in their site therefore has the benefit of knowing that any registered applicant is being notified of a property as soon as it is available online.
Polygon Map Search
With a Polygon Map Search you can take the power of searching to the next level. Later on this page you will see a description of Dynamic Mapping where the results of a visitor's search are displayed on a map. With Polygon Mapping your visitor can actually draw a polygon on the map which specifically includes and excludes parts of a territory. In this way the visitor can choose to see properties for example in a specific school's catchment area, or they can exclude a specific part of town that they know they don't want to live.
As we all know location is one of the primary drivers when choosing where to live and this tool gives your visitors a great visual way of refining their preferences. They are in control of the process completely and with an intuitive interface they can be finding their next home with you in no time at all.
Dynamic Google Map Results
Having got control of the data as described in the XML feed section it is possible to do what is called Geocoding to the property data. That means converting the address to grid references. This in turn allows us to pinpoint multiple properties on a Google map and create icons to mark each of their locations.
The problem with creating lists of properties on a web site is that unless your surfer knows the location extremely well most addresses mean nothing to them. In fact a list of property addresses usually means more to the estate agent or their competitors.
By showing a map with the locations of the properties you are able to help applicants much more rapidly determine which ones they may be more interested in based on location. They can choose properties to view in the knowledge that they are in the school catchment area they are interested in or close enough to the motorway junction for their commuting requirements.
Many of our sites feature this function which has proven to be very popular especially with the ability to have satellite and hybrid views of a property's location with fine zoom controls.
An Ajax powered search is part of the same family of power tools that we provide which go beyond the normal "Press Search and scan the list" approach.
With an Ajax powered search the visitor is able to type into the search form where they want to investigate. However, instead of allowing them to misspell or otherwise search where there are no properties it will automatically present them with a list of valid entries based upon what actually exists in the database at that moment.
So they may for example start typing with an E in a London agent's site and it will present Ealing and Earl's Court as valid options. Note that by taking this approach it solves the problem of them having to know whether to include the apostrophe in the Earl's Court option.
Content Management System
Our custom Content Management System (CMS) is a hugely powerful addition to all our sites. Many CMS systems are very controlling of a web site in that every single part of it has to be built into the CMS. This can have the effect of constraining design, limiting function because the site then requires two databases which can conflict on the same page etc.
The Property Jungle's CMS has been deliberately built to provide the lightness of touch and flexibility that today's agents need by allowing us to integrate it into just the pages that you want your team to have access to control the content on. We can even make it only provide editorial access to specific parts of pages, leaving the rest of the site free from harm.
Our CMS is being used successfully today by literally hundreds of agents to do such things as manage a blog in their site, write news features creating libraries of content rich pages that search engines adore, change the words on special offers, change personnel profiles and words and much more. For the more tech savvy it can even be used to control Meta tags in the pages for SEO purposes.
With the ability to control text, upload images and have it all styled to match the rest of the site this CMS is the tool you need to make sure your site remains current, topical, growing and relevant.
Growth Search Facebook App
Whether we 'like' it or not the majority of your customers are on Facebook and any number of them could interact with you there - but it takes scarce time and effort to write good posts and engage at a personal level.
We provide access to intelligent email stationery for your company which ensures that every time someone sends an email, whether from a pc, phone or tablet, it is always perfectly branded; promoting your business, your web site, your services and offers and helping you gain new instructions. Find out more