Technology, for all of the ways that it can disrupt our typical business routines, leaves a great deal of room for innovation in commercial real estate. The ways that we do business are changing, as evidenced by the success of online behemoths such as Amazon and the closure of countless brick-and-mortar stores. The internet provides countless options for potential clients to look at commercial real estate options themselves, without the help of a realtor or real estate builer to offer professional advice.
So, how can you include these new technology changes in your commercial real estate business?
We know it can all seem intimidating at first. But, by taking advantage of technology trends, you can benefit both your buyers and investors while maintaining your business and customer experience. Technology is the future, and embracing these opportunities early on will only make your business experience better for all involved.
The following five reasons, should serve as a reminder that, really, technology is a good thing!
1. Marketing is a cinch.
The internet changed everything when it comes to marketing. But, for people who are used to the traditional methods of commercial real estate marketing, using the internet to get their business out there can be confusing. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to determine where to start and what marketing materials to focus your promotional energy on.
But the digital platforms that now exist for you to get your properties out there are limitless. You know you need a basic website to get started — but you can use that website to promote your own videos, listings, teaching materials and more. You can focus on organic SEO rankings, or spend time building out your social media presence. Like anything, online marketing is a learning experience, and it’s okay if it takes you some time to learn. Once you get the hang of it, you may be surprised at how easy it really is!
Whether you’re looking to automate marketing materials or simply network to churn out content faster, quicker and more effective marketing directly relates to more profitability.
2. All of your documents can follow you wherever you go.
Gone are the days when you had to rush back to the office to grab leases, formal offers, etc. With the advent of the mysterious “cloud” comes new ways to securely manage documents, even going so far as to allow for things such as confidentiality agreements with access control so that no one sees your information who shouldn’t.
This will save you (and your clients) time and money. It can also serve the helpful purpose of keeping your business more organized by seeing all of your documents in one place.
3. More people are going to see your properties — and you have access to more properties.
It’s not as simple as putting your deals online anymore. Clients can use all kinds of things — real estate websites, Google maps, detailed building history reports — to learn about a potential real estate purchase before they even speak to an agent. It’s your job to recognize those online platforms and make your listing as attractive as possible with the methods available to you.
By optimizing your listings for Google search results and social media as well as syndicating with other third-party portals, your properties will be viewable on multiple platforms with little additional work. More eyes equal more potential buyers!
4. Measure your success.
The best part about utilizing technology to aid your business is that you can measure its exact success. Many platforms come with their own marketing and analytics tools, and those that don’t are usually compatible with third-party analytics to determine exactly where you should be focusing your energy. A good business is always tweaking its strategies and studying what works — and what doesn’t — and technology makes this easier than ever.
While profits are certainly one way to measure a business’ success, marketing gives you new tools to analyze the more immediate and ongoing success of your business, before any sales are even made.
5. Enhance the customer experience.
Today, clients and customers have access to the kind of information that previously only commercial real estate agents had access to. They no longer have to pay agents for data and can see more properties up front than they did before. Rather than bemoan this disappearing profit path, agents should be embracing the opportunity to help clients through their new research journey.
Anything that enhances the user experience or makes it easier is an investment worth making. Not only do these solutions give your clients access to quick, easy information, but working with cloud- and mobile-friendly documents means less hassle associated with paperwork. Automated and online technology is the future; 10 years from now, you may be surprised at what your business process actually looks like.