Connecting Your Business During a Pandemic
Customer experience takes on new meaning against the backdrop of a pandemic. If you have traditionally based your real estate business on personal contact, you need to update your gameplan to connect with customers in the online world.
Using online and virtual tools aren’t new in real estate, but now they are essential to maintaining your success in the world of real estate transactions. For your clients’ sake you want to minimize risk by reducing personal interaction.
You may be feeling squeezed by technology with services like Zillow and Redfin. Making a shift to communicating and serving your clients online, helps you stay in the game.
Reorient your customer experience. Educate your clients on how to work in the online world. You’ll reduce their apprehension. And you’ll show them you understand the current environment and can serve them in a way that minimizes risk.
By consciously providing empathy and care during this crisis, you’ll build a foundation of goodwill and long-lasting emotional connections with the communities they serve. Supporting emotional needs builds trust in this time of uncertainty.
Create and curate online resources to help your clients connect and do as much business as they can with you without personal contact.
- Create goodwill and long-lasting emotional connections by providing empathy and care in your messages. Let your clients know that you understand. Create positive statements on your home page and about page.
- Use your website to provide visual information on your listings. Create virtual walkthroughs for your properties. Immoviewer provides a Live Tour feature that lets agents share tour links with clients and control movement throughout the tour. FloorPlanOnline helps you create a point-and-click tour of the floorplan. Kleard offers on-demand open houses.
- Use online video chat for meetings with clients. You’ll establish and maintain a personal connection and help them walk through transactional “paperwork.”
- Facilitate document access by providing online access. States like California provide uniform documents with Zipforms for purchase agreements, leasing agreements, and rental agreements. All parties can sign virtually using Docusign.
- Use Notarize.com to notarize and sign documents online.
- Order property inspections online. Educate your clients about allowing the inspector to move safely through the house without other people present.
Actively Shift Clients to Online Channels
Guide clients through the online world as their needs turn digital. By walking clients through the digital world you’ll relieve their concerns about the pandemic.
Keeping your customers informed is important but only if what you have to say is important to them. Share tips and insights about how your industry can cope or even expand during these challenging times.
The current COVID-19 outbreak is global. Your clients will appreciate your shift to help them navigate the world of real estate transactions. Lead them in a caring, empathetic manner during these difficult times. You create the potential for real connections that will outlive the social and economic impacts of the pandemic.
Shift to Virtual Property Showings
Your mindset about property showings will help you build client relationships during the pandemic. Help potential clients get to know a property with virtual experiences. Video is the best way to present a property in the virtual world.
Most smart phones are more than adequate for video. If you are uncomfortable with video or not equipped, hire a professional. Real estate pros who are not equipped to take video footage of a property themselves should consider hiring a company to do so. Agents should also consider scheduling virtual showing appointments using Zoom or FaceTime to present the listing to clients.
Offer a livestream open house at a specific time and date. Invite prospective clients to your online event. YouTube and Facebook allow you to host live virtual viewing events. Build buzz about your open house event on social media and through online advertising.
You’ll be safely alone in the property while reducing the risk of exposure for everyone.
Virtual Showing Appointments
Use virtual hosting solutions like Zoom or FaceTime to present the listing to the client. It’s still a private session with your client. They can ask questions as you walk through the house. You can open doors and drawers, get closer to an electrical panel, show the view out the kitchen and respond to their specific questions. As you close your showing, remind them of the way you can help them complete the transaction with your virtual solutions.
Live Pre-Purchase Showing
Clients who are ready to purchase may want to visit the property to make a final decision. You can still minimize risk for their in-person property visit.
Implement a smart lock system to allow clients to visit the property at a stated time. Sellers and agents can control entry remotely using a smartphone or by providing a one-time access code.
If you are showing the property in person, remind clients to wear a mask and keep a distance of six feet or more. Provide disposable booties when they enter the house to limit external contaminants. Keep doors, drawers, and cabinets open to prevent guests from touching surfaces. Wipe down surfaces with disinfectant to protect owners from cross-contamination.
The Digital Shift to the Future
People need you. So far the real estate market is thriving. You’re lucky to be back in the selling world again. You can be dynamic in the digital world. Your empathy and understanding willl help both buyers and sellers reach their goals during a time of crisis.
Need to help your client with property in another location? Give your client the service they need, find an inspector at Inspect.com.