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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Agency tries £1 stunt fee offer to drive Christmas web traffic

A single-branch agency operating around Blackpool is offering vendors ultra-low fees if they register their homes for sale online on Boxing Day.

Hindley & Lamb, a single-branch agency handling sales and lettings across the Fylde coast area, says from 10am on December 26 the first vendor to register their home for sale via their website will pay an upfront fee of just £1.

The next will pay just £6 and subsequent vendors will pay £5 extra each time - so, for example, the 11th vendor to register would pay £51.

The offer is only open to vendors with a FY postcode and a home valued under £500,000; although the agency has an office, the offer extends only to instructions made online.

"We decided to launch the sale on Boxing Day, as ... it's one of the busiest days for online shopping and one of the busiest days for property portals like Rightmove" says an agency spokesman.

Christmas traffic to major property portals is famously busy over the festive period. Back in January this year Rightmove says it enjoyed record traffic over key Christmas and New Year days for both sides and lettings. 

Page views on both Christmas Day and Boxing Day were up 22 per cent on 2014. On Boxing Day there were almost 31 million page views on the site, rising to 44 million on December 30. 

  • John Evans

    Desperate or what?

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    What is it with estate agents (not just these guys) ? that the only way they can see to be competitive is to chop their fees. To be competitive does not mean to be cheaper, it means to offer more value. There are two parts to value... cost and return. Both can be manipulated to increase value and therefore increase competitiveness.
    Every survey I have seen of vendors and what they want from an estate agent, low fees is way down the list.
    There are only so many properties on your patch that will be for sale, you can't make more, common sense tells me that I should be finding ways of getting more out of each one not less.
    The call centre agencies that are expanding at the moment, that is all they have to compete with.. lower fees. That's it, that is all they have. They are not local, they are not better, they don't do more, they are just cheap. But, they are getting away with it for one reason. To the public, estate agents are all the same, and if they are all the same then I may as well have the cheapest. It is a race to the bottom that you can't and don't want to win.
    Why would you wish to compete with them on their terms.. low fees ? those who do are falling into their trap.
    Failing to sufficiently and tangibly differentiate themselves from the crowd will be the death of many High Street agents.
    Those who are marketers not listers, merchandisers not shelf stackers, sales people not order takers, negotiators not passers on of offers, they will survive and prosper. The others ? nah !

  • David Gibbs

    I quite agree with Blue Blue's comments. I have taken a look at their website offer and its free of any catches, so they will literally be PAYING customers to sell their house for them!!! There are low fees and then there is stupidity. Yes they will get boards up to give them board presence, but at what cost to their business? They cant bank on selling mortgages to these customers, or use their preferred solicitor to get a kick back from them. They also cannot expect repeat custom from these people, as people do not move home for fun and so will be years until they are back in the market again. Unfortunately this type of thing drags every agent down, as people will begin to think that agents do not do anything for their money, or how else could they afford to offer this type of deal. Agents have to get smart and think of something that differentiates themselves from their competitors, other than slashing fees. Any "agent" can slash fees, but in my 26 years experience of this business, it is suicide to offer deals like this, as it is VERY hard to put your fees up again in the future, if you are known as a fee cutting agent.

    icon

    Bit quiet at the office today dave :)

     
  • Carl Smales

    The first rule of sales 'anyone can give it away!'

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    • J G
    • 09 December 2016 16:01 PM

    I'm due to open a new one branch office in March. My fees will be higher than most (I may charge £2!!) , but I am confident of our brand values, our unique differentiation on sales and letting, along with our message around quality. It does worry me that society chases the cheap deal and then ends up moaning about service, which in turn drags all agents names into the same pot, nevertheless, I'm sticking strong and believe that there is actually a market for a proper agency, no call centres, no high valuations etc etc....fingers crossed.

  • John Evans

    The easiest way to get the business is to be the cheapest and value the highest. Agent's vanity is market share. Revenue is vanity. Profit is sanity. Cash is reality.

    David OConnor

    Well said.
    It will take time for the 'vanity' agents to fall by the way side, but they will as without profit you do not have a business.
    All business is about service and a fair fee!

     
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