Speed is the Currency – Real Estate Business
We’ve all been there, waiting for a response about an item we want to buy or looking for more information about a service we hope to use.
Now imagine that this question relates to one of the most important financial and emotional decisions you are likely to make in your life.
How long is too long to wait? What happens if you get no response? And what do you think of the person you contacted if a response does not come quickly?
It quickly becomes clear that speed is key when it comes to good service and customer satisfaction.
And this is especially the case in real estate, where the asset involved is worth from a few hundred thousand dollars to a few million or well beyond.
Yet too often real estate agents forget that speed is a currency.
Some interesting statistics
I spoke with a few “seller referral” companies recently, and I was absolutely fascinated by one particular stat they both shared.
They noted that the most successful agents using these platforms had one thing in common: speed of engagement.
Their stats indicated that agents who responded to “Seller Rating” requests as quickly as possible had an 80-90% success rate in winning the deal.
And when we talk about the shortest time, it was less than five minutes from the time the request for expertise was submitted. Not one hour, not the next day—within five minutes.
It’s an incredibly valuable KPI. It’s a good reminder that ‘speed’ in everything we do has ‘actuality’.
And this reality applies to just about everything.
The McDonald’s Factor
Let’s face it, as consumers, we’ve grown accustomed to expecting things instantly.
Consider the early days of McDonald’s and the successful introduction of “drive-thru.” Now back to more recent innovations like the disruption that came with “Uber”.
Each of them emphasizes speed, immediacy. And while speed of service is not a new concept, it is one that has rapidly accelerated in recent years as time becomes a customer’s most valuable asset.
From now on, any form of waiting devalues the user experience. We want things now because as consumers we expect speed and service delivery to go hand in hand.
A legacy of the pandemic
As real estate boomed throughout the pandemic, one victim became the speed of response. Buyers could wait days for a response to their request.
Worse still, some received no response. Back then, agents were busy, properties were plentiful and sales were fast.
And yes, it was a market like no other that most will see in our lifetime, but it left a sour taste in the mouths of many potential customers.
I’d say that shouldn’t have been their experience, even at the height of the market, but if you’ve been guilty of leaving customers hanging, now’s the time to bring your company’s attention to the speed of response and not just on sales.
A competitive advantage
Whatever your role, be it sales, property management or administration, the focus on ‘speed’ will give you a competitive edge.
So how exactly does this happen? Well, you can start by reviewing your processes, service standards, and service delivery.
Identify where you can reduce the time needed to complete a particular task. Where can improvements be made that will set you apart from the competition and provide greater perceived value to your customers?
Creating a “competitive advantage” often boils down to simple, easy-to-execute improvements. Speed is one of them, and now is the time to turn your attention to this metric.
Manos Findikakis is the Managing Director of Agents’Agency.