A survey of estate agents’ market share post-lockdown indicates significant advances for independent agencies and online operators.
TwentyCi, a data consultancy, says single-office independent agents improved their market share by five per cent in the four weeks post lockdown.
Two-to-five branch independents also had a five per cent share during the same period, again better than before.
But the big winners at the time were online/hybrid operators which improved their share by 11 per cent, presumably taking advantage of the lockdown period when traditional agencies were closed.
Large agencies and corporates with six branches or more suffered the most, losing 21 per cent of their share during this four-week period immediately after lockdown.
The consultancy says: “During lockdown most vendors delayed putting their properties on the market, greatly affecting the industry as a whole. Fewer available listings naturally created a much more competitive environment, excluding online/hybrid businesses, it would seem the smaller more agile agencies were quicker to react and benefitted the most.”
TwentyCi does not give absolute percentages for the different agency types - just an indication of whether they are above or below their usual market share.
However in the more recent four weeks to late July the situation shows signs of returning to something more like normal - but with independents and onliners still performing better than before.
The online share is now six per cent above average; two-to-five branch agencies now enjoy a share some two per cent above average, and single-branch independents are four per cent above average.
Corporates and large agencies are fighting back, however; combined they are now only 10 per cent behind their pre-pandemic market share.