10 ways smaller agents can punch above their weight

Most start-up, young or independent estate agents in the UK have at least one large or corporate adversary on their patch.

And although competition is no bad thing, sometimes the significant head office, IT and financial resources that large chains can muster to support their local branches can seem like a huge advantage.

But there are plenty of ways smaller agents can punch above their weight and level the local estate agents playing field. Here are 10 ideas to help them achieve that.


Beat the competition to viewings

Unlike other portals, Zoopla enables any agent to appear on the lists of local agents that house hunters can choose from when sending out valuation requests. This enables smaller or newer agencies to compete on a more level playing field for online valuation leads and gain more instructions in today’s competitive and low-transactional market.


Look like you mean business

One of the most popular Zoopla tools that agents use is our area sponsorship banners. These appear within the property search results pages on an agent’s patch and therefore, regardless of size, agents can ensure both vendors and buyers see their name, helping build their local brand.


Promote your properties on Facebook

Online platforms and in particular Facebook are used by millions of home buyers and sellers on a daily basis, so they are ideal platforms on which to introduce an agency’s brand and promote its latest homes for sale, and generate leads. Find out how it’s done.


Take insightful house price reports along to viewings

You know your patch like the back of your hand. But how best to prove it? We enable agents to produce engaging local housing market reports to take along to viewings and help nail that instruction.


Wrap your company cars

Every estate agency has at least one company car, but how many use them to promote their business? It’s a smart and affordable way to let locals see your brand. To partially wrap a small-to-medium size car can cost between £500 and £1,200 – which is not a bad price to pay to turn your vehicle into a free advertising hoarding.


Support community initiatives with For Sale boards

Help local schools and other good causes get their message over by offering home owners the opportunity to promote community activities with boards outside their homes co-branded with your agency’s name. Most of the key board suppliers now provide this service.


Manage your sales progression better

Larger estate agents often employ dedicated sales progression teams and significant IT resource to manage each sale. But with Zoopla’s Jupix and Alto software suites agents of all sizes can access a level of technology to rival their largest competitors.


Benchmark your business with the competition

Zoopla’s valuation tool tech enables agents to understand how many valuations were generated in an area during the previous month, which of them turned into instructions and, most importantly, which agency won them. Now you can understand how your business is performing against the competition, whatever size it may be.


Let your customers login

Can your agency’s clients log into your system and check how their sale is progressing? Many larger agents offer this as standard but so can small estate agents now. PropertyFile enables businesses to offer vendors a log-in 24/7 from which they can check how their home sale is moving forward, sign documents and, if they’ve been offered a hybrid-style option manage their own sales process.


Manage rental properties more efficiently

Many landlords now expect to be kept up-to-date with their rental property’s performance, particularly if they live outside the area or overseas. Zoopla provides agents the tech needed to achieve that as part of joined-up wider property and estate agency management suite.

Author: Nigel Lewis, property journalist