Rightmove is the UK’s largest online real estate portal and property website. The firm is massive and is listed on the London Stock Exchange. It is at the forefront of all real estate agencies in the UK. However, it is important to know that this success did not come overnight. Rightmove took the right initiatives at the right time and realised the potential of digitising its business, which makes for a good case study. So, let us take a deep dive into some of the digital initiatives that benefited Rightmove.
Rightmove was founded as a joint venture between four of the largest property agents in the UK. The company was founded by the 4 initial property agents and grew to become successful very quickly. By 2006, it was listed on the London Stock exchange as Rightmove PLC.
Rightmove became the leading business for buying and selling any property or getting in touch with an agent. Soon it had over a million listings on-site, and any potential customer could get in contact with every single real estate agent in the UK.
Rightmove itself is not a real estate agent but lists properties for real estate agents. It also makes it possible for homeowners to easily browse their dream homes and get in touch with their desired realtor.
Their business model has two sides. One is geared towards a vast “audience” looking for property listings online, and the other is towards property listings. Together, Rightmove uses multiple digital solutions to market the right property to the right customer and then ultimately get them in touch with the right realtor.
Since Rightmove is an online business, they have prioritised capitalising on the switch from traditional marketing to digital marketing. Their website can be reached from a number of devices. Their services are streamlined for optimum user experience. They employ various digital and marketing solutions to remain the market leader in the UK.
On its growth journey, Rightmove has faced many challenges since being founded in 2000. These challenges have included adapting to a digital world. As a new platform for marketing with high demand, Rightmove had to strategise efficiently to grow sustainably. Let us look at some of the challenges Rightmove faced and how it overcame them.
As online real estate picked up, Rightmove was already dealing with 20 thousand customers every day. They had to find a dedicated customer service provider to meet their growing demand. But it had to be done properly so that potential customers were offered the best experience. Their questions had to be swiftly answered and any issues resolved promptly.
A major part of Rightmove’s job is to sift through the huge quantity of data from a variety of sources. They have to then integrate the data with other demographics such as location, ratings and prices. Doing so helps Rightmove provide valid listings to possible customers. The more accurate listing they can find, the more likely they are to make a sale.
Another challenge that Rightmove faced was to find a way to keep up with the demand for more images of listings. Every day more and more images were being uploaded, plus the need for their listings to be available seamlessly on all mobile devices. Rightmove had to find a way to manage and deliver all these images and visuals smoothly while adding value to the customer experience.
Rightmove has employed various digital technologies such as data management software and marketing strategies such as a Content delivery system (CDS) to adapt and grow their business over time. The solutions were Freshdesk, AddressBase, and LimeLight CDS.
Freshdesk is a cloud-based customer service software that offers help desk support and smart automation to help businesses get more done in less time. Rightmove used Freshdesk to meet their ever-increasing demand. Due to the rise of online customers, more and more people need their questions answered or get connected with realtors; this is where Freshdesk was deployed.
AddressBase is an addressing gazetteer that offers full lifecycle information of a property, which can then be used within database systems and geographical information systems (GIS). For Rightmove, Addressbase was an upgrade to the software they were using previously. This upgrade allowed for faster verification of submitted addresses of listings and allowed for a more specific view of all listings over their lifecycle.
Content Delivery System
LimeLight Content Delivery Systems(CDS) is a management system based on improving customer experience, specifically when streaming and viewing any sort of content online. This provides companies like Rightmove a way to integrate their current CDS with LimeLight’s CDS. As a result, Rightmove was able to provide faster and more reliable content to consumers in an efficient and cost-saving manner.
Importance of digital innovation in the real estate agency
The most important lesson we can learn from this case study is the importance of adapting. The necessity of digital innovation has been brought about by change. Change in customer expectations and behaviours. People today need more visuals, graphics and information. The buyer of today will want instant, seamless access to your website on all their devices. Many people would prefer to see a virtual render of their property than having to drive down to the physical location. The technological advancements of today now allow the business to integrate these new services and massively improve their overall operations.
All these new needs and demands need to be met. The business that does the best job at providing these services and does it in a way that adds to the customer experience will excel and grow.
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