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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

OnTheMarket traffic down 43% last month claims Zoopla

Zoopla, buoyed by its latest financial figures reported to the City yesterday, now claims that OnTheMarket lost 43 per cent of its traffic in November compared to October. 

Using data from what it describes as the “independent web-monitoring firm Hitwise” Zoopla claims that OnTheMarket visits in November totalled 2,139,301. 

This compares to 3,759,022 visits to OTM in October and 3,633,915 in September.

Zoopla claims traffic to OTM has been averaging about 10 per cent of the levels visiting Zoopla and PrimeLocation over recent months “highlighting the difficulty it is facing in finding a loyal audience” according to a statement from ZPG.

It claims that OTM had just six per cent of ZPG’s visits in November according to Hitwise. 

“Our results ... highlight that building a loyal audience of engaged users is about far more than just marketing spend. In a competitive market the quality of the product is what ultimately wins the day with both users and advertisers and that is what we are focused on” says ZPG spokesman Lawrence Hall. 

“Having delivered over 25m leads to our members last year, including over 300,000 appraisal leads (up 65 per cent), we remain by far one of the most effective marketing channels for property professionals in the UK and unsurprisingly we continue to see a solid flow of agents returning to us from OTM” says Hall.

Estate Agent Today has asked OnTheMarket for its comments.

Meanwhile City analysts have responded to ZPG’s figures to the City in characteristically varied style.

Jefferies - which advised Zoopla on its flotation - says ZPG “has done more with less and simultaneously stuck to its strategy (cutting marketing costs) and raised its game with more visitors despite fewer listings” and believes that with uSwitch, ZPG aims to be “for the homebuyer, the Amazon of UK residential, with services ranging across property to tradesmen to utilities.” 

The firm describes OnTheMarket as being “on the shelf” and warns that “unless estate agents start to fill their Christmas stockings with OTM subscriptions, we doubt it will be the UK's number two property portal by January 2016. If this target is not met, we suspect the rate of customers returning to Zoopla will gain momentum.

Exane BNP Paribas - which until recently has been praising OTM - describes Zoopla’s figures as “a small positive” with an outlook that “as usual is confident.” However, he points to falls in traffic and leads and anticipates “Agents’ Mutual [OTM] to remain a significant drag (traffic, inventory, membership, etc.).”

However, Exane sees Rightmove as being the big winner from the rivalry.

  • Simon Shinerock

    When I think of OTM these days I can't help imagining them in a Formula One Race and I can't get the comic phrase 'Chug Phutt Splutter' out of my head.

  • Algarve  Investor

    And so it continues. This just sounds like gleeful boasting from Zoopla. They could try and have a bit more glass.

    On the other hand, OTM has been bullish in its attacks on Zoopla and Springett has regularly insisted that OTM were days away from overtaking Zoopla as the number 2 portal. So you reap what you sow, I suppose.

    Algarve  Investor

    *Class even.

     
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    OTM are a bit like McLaren F1.... it all looks like it should perform from the outside, sadly the engine is knackered which means you cant properly develop the car !!! put put slutter bang dead ! the only difference is that all the OTM mechanics don't have a clue the cars not performing, because the team manager says its alright to finish last ....

  • Trevor Mealham

    In fairness. Clocks go back, less people view in the dark after work. Viewings become less nov/Dec/Jan. People view at weekends, that is as peoples christmas and new year plans allow.

    So all property sales websites traffic drops and grows with the seasons as does agents trade.

    But for sure reports like Richard Rawlings show stats that OTM is flagging and its one other portal rule is damaging not only for consumers relying on presence to show their property. But restraints causing lessor biz is bad for biz. I know agent MDs concerned they have wages to pay and one MD tied in for 5 years even claimed he was losing instructions as OTM wasn't a brand most home buyers or sellers knew of.

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    This constant stuff regarding OTM is becoming very boring - especially Simon Shinerock and Graham Norwood and his obsession with OTM.
    If it suits the subscribers so be it. However the MD who has signed for 5 years.............. I wonder if he really pushes OTM on all of his literature, advertising and displays? Even the 'big boys' who advertise in the Sundays do not. Are these subscribers just leaving it to others?

  • Trevor Mealham

    Interesting Ray. The trouble is that other forums have been very AM/OTM pro.

    Things change - for instance can agents tied in for 5 years to AM/OTM's restraints near a year on say it was the best move, or are they regretting it?

    Other bits that change are regulation restraints. As well as AM/OTM having their cartel-like rules for own commercial gain. Does their own remit fit government/consumer wants??

    Just the other day we saw Treasury put out a paper to bring more innovation into the industry.

    The paper wants generally more innovation, but also highlights online only agents. As such moreso now than months ago, AM/OTM are now flowing more against the Government tide upstream.

    Consumer beneficial markets - can't restrain by commercial anti-competitive company rules. AM and OTM are shown as two separate entities with different directors on the boards of each.

    Collusion against government consumer wants is a dangerous place to take agents.

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