By Sara Williams
Recent increases in mortgage rates caused a slowdown in housing demand and a surge in new construction inventory. The remaining buyers have more options and higher expectations, so new homes must be effectively marketed to stand out against resale properties. In this blog, we will discuss how to leverage consumer behavior trends to engage potential buyers online and in person, how to showcase the benefits of new homes through visual assets and use technology to sell more inventory homes online. We’ll concentrate on marketing strategies that will help you increase visibility, and put potential buyers at ease by providing transparency and making it easy to buy your homes.
Let’s start with increasing visibility. One effective way for homebuilders to market new homes and differentiate them from resales is by utilizing short-form video platforms such as TikTok or Facebook and Instagram Reels. These platforms have become extremely popular among consumers and allow builders to showcase their homes in a fun and engaging way.
By highlighting the unique advantages of new homes, such as modern layouts, energy-efficient appliances, and technology, builders can appeal to potential buyers on social media. Additionally, by emphasizing workmanship and materials used in their homes, builders can assure buyers of quality construction. Utilizing short-form videos on social media can be a powerful tool for reaching potential buyers by going viral and standing out in a crowded market. We grew our social media at Anewgo from zero to over thirty thousand followers in less than five months by using this approach.
Another way to increase visibility is to list inventory in a marketplace. In today’s fast-paced world, consumers are looking for convenience and efficiency when buying a home. Gone are the days of browsing through individual builder websites one by one. Instead, buyers are turning to online marketplaces where they can easily search and compare homes across multiple builders and communities.
One such marketplace is Anewgo. This platform is designed specifically for the new construction home buying journey and offers features such as a shopper’s quiz to quickly match buyers with the right builder, advanced search technology, and smart filters for sorting by desired features. Additionally, the Anewgo marketplace allows buyers to collaborate with co-buyers, agents, and builders and complete personalized customer journeys online.
Other popular marketplaces include Zillow, Realtor.com, and Redfin. This shift in the way buyers shop for homes presents an opportunity for builders to increase visibility and attract more buyers by listing their inventory homes on these marketplaces.
One of the reasons consumers shy away from new is due to a general lack of transparency, so they often settle for used because at least they “know what they’re getting into”. In today’s real estate market, providing pricing transparency to potential home buyers is more important than ever. One effective way to do this is by using a mortgage calculator as a marketing tool. A mortgage calculator can help buyers understand the costs associated with buying a new home and can help them make informed decisions about their purchase.
One of the main benefits of using a mortgage calculator is that it can help buyers comprehend the total cost of buying a new home, including the down payment, closing costs, and monthly mortgage payments. Providing a mortgage calculator on your website can increase the chances of your properties getting sold, as it gives the buyer a clear picture of the cost breakdown and helps them in budgeting and planning.
Another way to provide transparency is to offer virtual tours. The rise of technology has made it easier for buyers to find and view homes from the comfort of their own homes. Virtual tours have become a popular way for buyers to get a feel for a home before they even step foot inside. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors, over 80% of buyers say they would like to see a virtual tour of a home before they schedule an in-person visit.
Virtual tours are not just about showing the interior of a home, they also play a crucial role in showcasing the community and amenities that are available to residents. According to a survey by the National Association of Home Builders, nearly 90% of new home buyers stated that community amenities were an important factor in their decision to buy a new home. This includes things like access to parks, community centers, and recreational activities. It’s important to highlight the neighborhood, local schools, shopping and dining options, and recreational activities. This not only gives buyers a sense of what it would be like to live in the area, but it also helps to differentiate new construction from resale homes.
Interactive virtual tours, such as those that allow viewers to navigate through a home or change finishes, colors, and furniture can be effective in helping buyers visualize themselves in the home. This will help buyers to get a more realistic and comprehensive view of the home, and make a buying decision more confidently.
However, just because a virtual tour is available, doesn’t mean that consumers want to navigate it alone. Live Guided Virtual Tours (LGT) offers a solution for builders to meet their consumers online and provide a personal touch to the virtual tour experience just like they would in a model home.
LGT allows builders to curate the experience by pointing out features and benefits as shoppers virtually tour the home. It also allows salespeople to get to know their clients better as they have the front seat to all activities (clicks) and therefore can position homes based on what’s important to their clients.
Another benefit of LGT is the ability to have multiple sessions running simultaneously. This allows for tours to be conducted in different languages or by different sales representatives, catering to the specific needs of each consumer. LGT can be accessed on both desktop and mobile devices, making it easy for clients to dial in from anywhere.
Incorporating virtual tours into a builder’s sales strategy is a great way to reach a wider audience, save time and resources, and provide a better customer experience. To maximize the effectiveness of virtual tours, builders should ensure that they are easy to access and navigate and that they accurately reflect the quality of the home and its features.
A study by Zillow found that homes with virtual tours receive, on average, 87% more views than homes without virtual tours. So be sure to incorporate virtual tours in your new home marketing to increase the likelihood of an in-person visit.
When it comes to touring model or inventory homes, it’s crucial to make it easily accessible. The trend of consumer self-service is on the rise as more buyers are looking for control and flexibility in the home-buying process. Self-touring options allow potential buyers to view homes on their schedule, without the need for a real estate agent or builder representative to be present. This not only saves time for the buyer but also allows them to view the home at their own pace and in a more private setting.
A survey by Redfin found that 67% of home buyers who used self-touring technology said it was “very helpful” in their home-buying decision. Self-touring can also help to reduce the number of walk-throughs and open houses needed. This not only saves time for the builder, but it can also help to reduce the number of people in the home at one time, which can be especially important during the pandemic.
With more buyers turning to self-touring options, builders need to take advantage of this technology to stay competitive in the market. There are several companies specializing in providing easy and secure access to builder inventory and model homes including NterNow and UTour.
Buy Now is another technology that taps into buyers’ desire for self-service. Using a “Buy Now” button on your website can be a powerful tool for selling inventory homes. By providing shoppers with the option to purchase or reserve a home online, you are giving them the convenience and flexibility to initiate a transaction whenever and wherever they are ready.
With a Buy Now button, buyers can purchase available inventory homes or they can design, price, and purchase a to-be-built home online, using tools like virtual tours and interactive floor plans to get a sense of the property before committing. Once they’ve made their selections, the Buy Now button will automatically populate a digital contract that can be signed and submitted online, with the option for co-buyers.
One of the major benefits of using a Buy Now button is that it allows builders to receive multiple offers on a property and accept the best one, optimizing sales. Additionally, it gives buyers the peace of mind of being able to stay informed throughout the process, with instant notifications of offer acceptance or rejection.
Using a Buy Now button allows builders to take deposit payments online using integrated payment platforms like Stripe. This can help to simplify the buying process and reduce the number of steps required to close a sale. Overall, a Buy Now button can be a powerful tool for selling inventory homes by providing convenience and flexibility for buyers, while also streamlining the sales process for builders.
Technology can play a crucial role in accelerating inventory home sales for builders. By leveraging consumer behavior trends and utilizing platforms such as TikTok, Instagram Reels, and online marketplaces, builders can increase visibility and differentiate their homes from resales. Additionally, by providing transparency and making it easy for buyers to understand the costs associated with buying a new home through tools such as mortgage calculators and virtual tours, builders can put potential buyers at ease and increase the chances of closing a sale. As the housing market continues to evolve, it’s important for builders to stay ahead of the curve and implement technology-driven strategies to stand out in a competitive marketplace.
Want to learn more about Anewgo solutions for homebuilders? Schedule a time to chat with our Director of Sales Sara Williams.