Rightmove has reported a dramatic bounce back in its fortunes - and it’s making more money from agents even than before the pandemic.
Today’s half-year performance figures obviously show significant improvements on the position this time last year after the pandemic hit, the housing market had been closed and the portal had reduced its fees.
However, today’s figures show significantly higher profits than in 2019 - long before the pandemic hit the property sector.
Rightmove this morning says:
- the key Average Revenue Per Advertiser (the amount paid by the average agent) is up 63 per cent to £1,163 per month - in 2020 when fees were reduced it was just £712 while in 2019 it was £1,077;
- relative to June 2019, Agency ARPA is up by £107 (11 per cent);
- membership numbers (the number of agents and developers advertising) are broadly flat since the start of the year at 19,116. There’s been a small rise of 130 agent branches to 16,052; there’s been a drop of 211 New Homes developments;
- revenue up 58 per cent on 2020 and up 4 per cent on 2019 “due to growth in Agency and Other revenues, partially offset by a decline in New Homes revenues”
- operating profit is £114.9m, up 86 per cent on 2020 and up 6 per cent on 2019.
In terms of visits to the portal, Rightmove claims that its position as “the place home-hunters turn to first” was further strengthened, with market share of time on portals at 90 per cent. Time on site averaged 1.7 billion minutes per month over the half year period - compared with 1.1 billion for the same periods of 2020 and 2019.
Site visits to Rightmove of 1.4 billion during the first half year of 2021 are 54 per cent up even on 2019 figures.
Rightmove's chief executive Peter Brooks-Johnson says: “The first half of 2021 brought further lockdowns, instilling in many a desire or motivation to move home, and the nation relied on us to help them to find their new life, with a record 10.4bn minutes spent searching and researching on Rightmove. The innovation we have delivered to help home-hunters find their happy, despite the restrictions, have been well used - with 200,000 video viewings and 160,000 rental viewing appointments made on the platform.
"Our customers expect our platform to deliver the best exposure for their brand, extremely effective advertising, and to help them to grow their businesses. The strong take-up of our premium Optimiser 2020 package shows agents’ continued belief in the Rightmove platform, as they invest in our digital products and innovative algorithms to help them to identify more opportunities to succeed.
"Constantly innovating our platform and finding and developing the best people are at the heart of everything we do. We are committed to further increasing our diversity by promoting Rightmove roles to under-represented ethnic groups and the LGBTQ+ community, and we’ll continue to support all our people through our mental health and wellbeing programme.
"I’m excited about the range of our plans – including our new digital mortgage and rental journeys – as we continue to help to make home-moving easier in the UK.”