While the high point in seasonal buyer demand can vary considerably by market, it’s a fact that spring is the start of the busy season for many markets throughout the U.S. and Canada. With the arrival of warmer weather and cautious optimism that communities will soon be able to return to their pre-pandemic state, this year’s spring and summer markets promise to be unlike any other.
To help you prepare for what’s sure to be a remarkable rest of the year, we’ve put together five questions you can answer about your business to ensure you’re well prepared.
1. “How will I balance the demand for showings against continued restrictions on in-person showings?”
While we’re all looking forward to being able to leave COVID-19 in the rear-view mirror, the reality is that many communities may continue to employ restrictions on in-person showings based on any uptick in cases for some time to come, sometimes with little advance notice. Even when there are no formal restrictions on in-person showings, it’s understandable that some people may remain hesitant to see a listing in person for a while – or at the very least, they may be particularly picky about which listings they opt to visit.
As you field the demand for showings this season, you’ll need to be able to determine how you support your clients in the face of unique challenges that may still be relevant for the foreseeable future, even as the pandemic itself winds down. To help you answer this question, you may want to consider a showing strategy that enables clients to view a listing virtually. A smartphone made within the last few years and a sufficiently fast internet connection can now allow you and your clients to use a solution like ShowingTime LIVE Video to have a live showing by video that closely matches those of the in-person variety, with your clients joining you from the safety and comfort of their home.
2. “As a listing agent, how will I help my clients keep up with the unprecedented demand for showings?”
According to the latest showing data from both the ShowingTime Showing Index and our daily showing activity tracker, showings per listing are up in markets throughout the country as the available inventory remains insufficient to meet buyer demand. For a listing agent, this sounds like a good problem to have: In these conditions, your clients should have no shortage of competitive offers that you can help them field.
But this can be a double-edged sword when it comes to the legwork of managing the windfall of showings that precede those offers. As you think about how you’re preparing yourself, your team or your office for the wave of showings that will soon have to be managed, consider your current showing management solution. If you’re not already using technology to streamline showing management, now’s the time to consider such a service. If you already use such a service as an MLS or association benefit, such as ShowingTime for the MLS, you may also want to consider the benefits of adding an enhancement like the ShowingTime Appointment Center’s 24/7 live appointment specialists who will handle every showing request for you, whether made by phone or online.
Looking for more information on how to find a showing service that will meet your needs? Click here to download our free guide, Checklist: 8 Must-Have Features of an Appointment Service.
3. “As a buyer’s agent, how will I help my clients remain competitive in this busy market?”
With inventory generally low and buyer demand high, the winning bidder for most listings will not necessarily be determined by strength of the offer alone, but also by how responsive buyers happen to be throughout the process. With demand high, the time between when a listing goes on the market and when an offer is accepted can be measured in days. With time at a premium, buyer’s agents have to pay special consideration to how they’re helping their clients stand out.
Fortunately, just as listing agents have technology at their disposal to help them shoulder the burden of a torrid market, buyer’s agents themselves have access to technology to meet their unique needs. A service like ShowingTime Appointment Center Plus can be a key tool in helping buyer’s agents quickly schedule showings for their clients. With one phone call, an agent can leverage the service to schedule a day’s worth of showings, introducing some vital efficiency to a process that could otherwise take a significant part of an agent’s day, in turn leading to clients missing out on top listings.
4. “How will I be able to stand out amongst the competition to generate leads?
Just as listing agents and buyer’s agents alike have to adapt their respective strategies to accommodate the uptick in demand this season, so too must agents in general tweak their strategies when it comes to generating leads. Competition can be intense as the market heats up and that’s true for competition among fellow agents as well.
To stay ahead of the curve, now’s the time to think about your current marketing strategy and ways you can spice it up to remain competitive. To help you along, we’ve compiled a series of blogs on marketing, which you can access below.
Resources for enhancing your marketing strategy: 25 Effective Real Estate Marketing Ideas |9 More Proven Lead Sources for REALTORS | Five Successful Real Estate Webinar Musts | Dos and Don’ts for Generating Leads on Your Real Estate Website
5. “How can I choose the right technology or service for my needs?”
If you’re like one of the thousands of real estate professionals who are planning to invest in a tech solution to streamline your business this season, you may be experiencing some anxiety in trying to decide where to begin. With so much on the line, the decision could play a major role in whether you meet your business goals.
While you’re sure to ask yourself many questions to determine which solution is the right fit for your business, once you have a list of options to choose from, a great place to start is to ask what you’re looking for in the company that furnishes the technology. The availability of ample resources to help you get started with your product quickly, access to features to enhance your clients’ experience and a dedicated support staff are just a few characteristics of a provider you can rely on.
For more than 20 years, ShowingTime has helped agents, teams and offices keep their businesses moving through busy seasons without missing a step. With more than 600 million showings managed through ShowingTime (and counting!), we’re proud to be the industry’s leading provider of showing management technology, offering solutions that are tailormade for creating smooth workflows, even when business is brisk.
If you’re interested in learning more about how you can leverage technology to handle increasing business, click the button below to schedule a conversation with a member of our Sales Team.