Rightmove has revealed its figures for the full year 2020 - down in terms of profit and revenue because of the impact of the pandemic, but flying high as the market recovered.
One of the key figures for agents is how much money the portal makes from each member - this is the Average Revenue Per Advertiser, or ARPA.
This morning it has been revealed that ARPA in all-2020 was £778 per month, down 28 per cent from a year ago when it was £1,083.
However, as an indication of what’s to come in future, the portal points out that in December 2020 - just two months ago - its ARPA had bounced back up to a record £1,103, as the housing market recovered and agents piled in to publicise properties during the stamp duty holiday buying frenzy.
Rightmove also says this morning that over one million UK residential properties advertised on it during 2020 - up around 11 per cent on the previous year - and traffic to the site during the course of 2020 recorded 2.1 billion visits, compared with 1.6 billion in 2019.
The average time on site - another key indicator of how much Rightmove can charge, measured on consumer use - rose from 12.1 billion minutes in 2019 to 15.9 billion minutes last year.
Over the year as a whole the pandemic hit some of the portal’s headline figures hard.
Revenue was down 29 per cent “reflecting the impact of the discount support offered to our customers for the period April to September 2020” says this morning’s trading statement.
Operating profit was £135.1m, down 37 per cent, with the final dividend cancelled.
The portal remains upbeat in its message to its shareholders, however.
It says: “In 2021, we believe agents will continue to leverage our extensive suite of property advertising solutions to compete effectively and efficiently for new listings. Currently, we expect ARPA to increase from the December 2020 level at a rate of growth towards that seen in 2019.
“We will continue to closely manage our operating costs, although some of the short-term reductions seen in 2020 will reverse, and we will return to more usual levels of investment in our offering.
“Whilst there is clearly still significant macro uncertainty, with record traffic levels, a strong product suite and our ongoing commitment to delivering more innovation, the board is confident in the resilience of our business and the outlook for 2021 and beyond.”
Meanwhile in a separate statement this morning, Rightmove has revealed its busiest ever day - Wednesday February 17 - when visits to the portal surpassed the previous record of July 8 2020 as the stamp duty holiday was first announced
Over 8.5m visits recorded on February 17, while the number of prospective buyers contacting agents in February so far is up by 22 per cent on last year.
Rightmove also claims strong figures for its residential rental listings, overseas homes and commercial properties.
Rightmove’s property expert Tim Bannister says: “Despite all of the uncertainty right now, there are clear signs from buyers that they want to move home in the UK this year.
“Our traffic levels are on a par with the mini-boom from last summer, and July’s busiest ever day last year has been replaced by a lockdown day in February. Now that we have some clarity on what the roadmap out of lockdown could look like we expect to see more people putting their home on the market. This should help open up more choice in the market to satisfy the strong buyer demand we’re seeing.”