According to the National Association of Realtors 2009 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers almost 90% of buyers started their search online. If you are selling a home it is vital to pick a REALTOR that understands online marketing. Here are my top 5 tips for finding an Internet ready Real Estate agent.
1. Google them!
If you can’t easily find your potential real estate agent in Google that is not a good sign. Unless they have a really really common name or maybe have a celebrity name like Britney Spears or something they should be well ranked on the first page of Google.
2. Check their website.
Real estate agents websites don’t necessarily need to win design awards but they should be at a minimum professional looking and easy to navigate. Look how the listings are presented, if you don’t think the houses are shown in a way that will attract buyers to call then potential buyers will probably view your house’s listing in the same way.
3. Check their brokers website.
While it is important that your individual agent has a website also check their brokers site. If a broker is prominent in a particular area a large number of buyers may be aware of the brand and visit the broker site directly. The same principals apply here, the site should be easy to navigate and the listings should be presented well.
4. Facebook and twitter.
Your agent should ideally have a presence on both of these social networking sites. It’s important to remember that while other real estate agents are their competition they should have a working relationship with other agents. The fastest way to market your house is to other agents with active buyers.
5. Does your agent have a smart phone?
As crazy as it sounds some agents still not use a smart phone such as an iPhone. A smart phone allows for fast email conversations with potential buyers agents, allows Google search on the road, even twitter updates and pictures taken. If your agents phone is not so smart maybe you agent is not either.
6. Response time.
My number one trick to test a potential agent is response time. If they have a website contact form send a message through that, try email, @ them on twitter, call them. If you do not get a response within 24 hours on every contact you make Some agents check voicemail every day but only check email sporadically, that can potentially cost you a sale.
Here are some of my ideas for testing if your potential real estate agent has what it takes to cut it in today’s Internet focused market. Good luck selecting an Internet ready REALTOR!