An industry stalwart has urged critics of Rightmove to fight for the portal to offer agents a fairer pricing system, not to kill it off completely.
Robert May, who entered the agency industry in 1986 and in recent years has operated his own portal called Rummage4property, has long been regarded as an expert on industry IT developments and the portal scene in particular.
He says consumers actively use and like Rightmove as a main point of entry into the property market and insists this has a strong value to agents as well. Although May is critical in particular of Rightmove’s lack of technical innovation and its lower quality service to the lettings sector, he insists it is a highly valuable asset on the sales side.
In a video interview with industry analyst Christopher Watkin, May says the recent flurry of criticism of Rightmove has been understandable and triggered by the unfairness of its pricing policy and by the portal’s poor reputation in agents’ eyes in recent years in particular.
May, who is based in Devon, says some years ago agents in his area ceased advertising en masse in a local newspaper, returning “on our own terms” after the paper revised its advertising rates downwards.
He believes a similar result with the number one portal would be best for the industry as “Rightmove at a fair price is very much the agents’ friend” he insists.
In the interview, May gives his view on the different campaign groups that have sprung up in opposition to Rightmove, about how Zoopla and OnTheMarket have responded, and how the industry may change in a post-Covid 19 era.
The interview is the latest by Christopher Watkin and is available exclusively to Estate Agent Today readers below - and Watkin is keen to speak with other players in the wider industry portal debate, and he gives details at the end of the video.