Gary Keller and Josh Team, who run Keller Williams, talked about it. Then Simon Chen, head of Product and Innovation at Realogy, did too. Amazon and Netflix already do it.
Real estate is about to get personal in a whole new way.
Real estate is on the cusp to deliver what Amazon does. Right now, Amazon does it better than just about anyone. It knows what you want to buy before you do. Amazon learns from your behavior and becomes intuitive.
As Chen confessed during an Inman Connect Now Data Track session with RESO’s Sam DeBord, Amazon “knows me better than my wife does. It can anticipate what sorts of things I need to a creepy degree of accuracy.”
Keller and Team discussed the same concept around the idea of “consumer websites” that give each consumer a highly personalized, intuitive experience for their real estate needs. And not just for when consumers are buyers and sellers. But when consumers need to hire someone to improve or repair their home, this is where they will go, as this new model suggests.
New tech under the hood
We are already seeing the impact of AI (Artificial Intelligence) laced throughout almost all new real estate tech today and improvements to existing technology by industry leaders.
Look at startup Restb.ai and its computer vision software, already being implemented by major players like MRED and FBS. Want to search for homes with white kitchens or master bedrooms with fireplaces? This tech can deliver to consumers these new ways to search.
At Delta Media, AI is built into its new all-in-one digital marketing platform DeltaNET 6. Consumer engagement on brokerage websites powered by Delta can offer suggestions and automated engagements. Sites monitor consumer behavior and anticipate their next steps.
OJO Labs, working with Realogy in the US and RBC and Royal LePage in Canada, is already reinventing the buying process through conversational AI with consumers. The more OJO learns, the better it gets.
It’s all about the consumer
Until now, real estate technology has primarily focused internally – on improving the lives of brokers and agents. Think about all the tech that brokerages have collectively bought in the past decade that has a direct benefit to the industry versus tech that delivers a real benefit solely to the consumer experience.
That’s about to change. Just follow the money. VC dollars are backing the real estate tech firms focused on improving the consumer experience. It’s evident in what the leaders at KW and Realogy and other top brokerages are saying and now doing. It’s evident in what iBuyers have been doing.
One thing is clear: The biggest winners in real estate in the days ahead are those who improve the consumer experience.
Ask anyone who recently bought or sold a home knows how much better their experience would have been if it was akin to buying on Amazon.
When you buy your next house, will the experience be a little creepy because the website you go to only displays the kind of homes you are ready to buy? That the process is more intuitive and knows what you need before you do? I sure hope so.
I just wouldn’t count on an Amazon-like return policy.
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